Sue Houser

Pen Name:



Children’s, Middle Grade, Historical Fiction, Nonfiction


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Phone: 505-294-3142


I am a native of New Mexico. I grew up on a pinto bean/corn farm in the Estancia Valley. After high school, I worked as a legal secretary while I pursued degrees in psychology and counseling. After I retired from a career in social work/counseling, I joined writing organizations and took classes. My published books are New Mexico-themed stories, and I am proud to say they have all won awards. I live with my husband, Roger, in the foothills of the Sandia Mountains. We enjoy exploring out-of-the-way places in New Mexico.

More from Sue

I just released my newest middle-grade historical novel. Walter Steps Up to the Plate is set in historic Albuquerque in 1927. Walter willingly becomes a caretaker for his tuberculosis-stricken mother and accompanies her from Chicago to Albuquerque where they stay with relatives. A curious young lad, Walter finds time to explore the small, unique town. After a chance encounter with Al Capone, Walter unwillingly becomes Capone’s errand boy. When Capone arranges to pay for the mother’s expensive medical treatment, Walter faces a difficult decision.


Title: Walter Steps Up to the Plate
Publisher: Kinkajou Press (2023)
Genre: Middle Grade Historical Fiction

Walter will do anything to help his mother when she’ s diagnosed with tuberculosis, but does that include standing up to Al Capone?

Twelve-year-old Walter wants to spend the summer of 1927 watching his beloved Chicago Cubs play baseball. Instead, his life is upended when his mother is diagnosed with tuberculosis. Walter must leave everything he knows and loves to accompany his mother to Albuquerque, New Mexico?a place he has never been to live with relatives he has never met. To help with expenses, Walter gets a paper route. But the situation gets worse when his mother is admitted to a sanatorium and needs expensive surgery. A chance encounter with the gangster, Al “Scarface” Capone might change his mother’ s fortunes, and get her the surgery his mother needs. But to do it, Walter will become indebted to the notorious gangster.

Available for Sale


Title: Amelia and the Magic Ponies
Publisher: Irie Books (2022)
Genre: Children’s

In Amelia and the Magic Ponies, Los Caballitos has come to town! Amelia gets in line to ride the carousel, but when a thunderstorm blows in, the wooden ponies are hurriedly stashed in an old barn―and forgotten. The following year, Amelia goes in search of the enchanting little merry-go-round. Can she convince her grandfather to restore the damaged horses?

This book, written for 4-8 years old, parallels the story of Tio Vivo, an antique carousel that was found abandoned in Peñasco, New Mexico. In 1937, the Lions Club of Taos lovingly restored the carousel, then called Los Caballitos or Little Ponies. Artists then painted the ponies in bright, colorful designs. Renamed Tio Vivo, this charming carousel continues to take children on magical rides during Fiestas de Santiago y Santa Ana in Taos, New Mexico.

Available for Sale


Title: Wilmettie
Publisher: Texas Tech University (2020)
Genre: Middle Grade Historical Fiction

Wilmettie is a middle-reader work of historical fiction from award-winning children’s author Sue Houser. Wilmettie is the story of a family’s covered wagon journey from West Texas to New Mexico Territory in the early 1900s. When Wilmettie’s stepfather decides to follow his dream and claim a homestead of his own, Wilmettie’s younger brothers are excited about the journey. But twelve-year-old Wilmettie is reluctant to leave her familiar surroundings and the grandmother she loves. The book takes readers along for her family’s adventures on their way to what will become their new homestead: covered wagon trains are formed, rattlesnakes are encountered, rivers are forded, and banks are robbed. Along the way, Wilmettie meets new friends from places and cultures unlike her own as her family makes the perilous journey to claim their homestead land. But will it end up being a true home to Wilmettie?

Available for Sale


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