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"Listen up. Here's what's going to happen. I'm seeing my acupuncturist, I'm taking medicine, I'm still fighting this the best I can. My doctor says that at this point, that's the most I can do. I refuse to put any more poison into my body or spend any more time in hospitals. This is where I want to be. With the people who matter most to me. Okay?"

Susannah, making her declaration of how she's spending her final days, The Summer I Turned Pretty

Susannah Fisher

Name

Susannah Fisher

Age

35+

Gender

Female

Nicknames

Beck (by Laurel)
Suze (Mr. Fisher)

Occupation

N/A

Family

Adam Fisher (ex-husband)
Conrad Fisher (son)
Jeremiah Fisher (son)

Susannah "Beck" Fisher was the mother of Conrad and Jeremiah Fisher and the wife of their rather estranged father Adam Fisher.

She was the rock that everyone desperately clung to, being a close maternal figure for Belly (even more so than her own mother) and the childhood best friend of Laurel.

She dies between The Summer I Turned Pretty and It's Not Summer Without You, a result of her long battle with cancer. Throughout her time alive, she is shown to be very friendly, loving as well as very compassionate. 

The Summer I Turned Pretty

Susannah wants nothing more than for her next summer with her family to the best one yet - because it is her last one with them. Her breast cancer has returned and is without a doubt terminal this time. Even near death with cancer and her husband leaving her, she is lively and upbeat with her family and loved ones. She refuses to spend what she knows to be her final days in a hospital bed, but with friends and family. She initially tries to keep her cancer a secret from "the summer kids", not wanting to ruin it for them. What she doesn't know is that everyone - except Belly - is aware of her cancer. She finally admits her cancer has come back with a vengeance in the end of the first novel, but states that she wants to be with her family to the end of things.

It's Not Summer Without You

Despite her strong spirit, she dies between the first and second novels. Her death serves as a strong and vicious blow to everyone, causing them all to struggle to live without her. It takes them about a year to form a life without her existence and to get their act together in order to move forward in their lives. She remains heavily remembered by her family and friends throughout the rest of the series.

We'll Always Have Summer

It is discovered she left letters to "the summer kids" to read on their wedding days. The readers, however, only get to read the letter she left for Belly. It is, however, mentioned that in Conrad's letter she wrote how she had seen him truly in love only once; which was with Belly.

Appearance and Personality

It is mentioned she had long caramel colored hair prior to her cancer that was soft. However, during chemo, she lost her hair and began wearing wigs that "were the best money could buy". After chemo, her hair grew back, but she kept it short at her chin. It is mentioned she also had a signature sun hat she always wore.

She was very lively and spirited, deeply loving her family more than anything. Despite Belly not being biologically related to her, she considered the young girl to be her "secret daughter" and loved her as such. She had such a deep motherly bond with her, it even rivaled the relationship between Belly and her actual mother, Laurel. She also truly loved her husband, Adam, despite how badly he treated her and refused to leave him. He was an alcoholic, frequently cheated on her and emotionally mistreated Jeremiah and Conrad. He even took off during her time with cancer, during which he left her all together.

Quotes

  • "When did you go and grow up? When did you turn into this phenomenal woman?" (...) You have always been lovely, but oh honey, look at you. You're so pretty. So pretty. You're going to have an amazing, amazing summer. It'll be a summer you never forget."
  • "It's a special night. It's the first night of summer."
  • "Summer doesn't start until our friends get here."
  • "Mothers get to have secrets too. I don't ask you boys about your secrets, now, do I?"
  • "Laurel, I'm a big girl now. I need you to stop managing my life. I'm the one who gets to decide how I want to live it."
  • "Oh, Belly. That's not true. She would care. She does care."

Trivia

  • She and Laurel had been best friends since the age of nine and both shared heart shaped scars on the inside of their wrists.
  • On her deathbed, Susannah had Conrad promise to take care of Jeremiah. She also had Belly promise to take care of Conrad as her final wish to her.
  • Despite only appearing in one novel of the three, she is considered a major character given how large of a role she plays in the main characters lives - even beyond her death - and all three novels.
  • She deeply loved working at a women's shelter and regularly worked there, getting money donated to the cause. A plaque and garden had been built in her honor to all the work she had put into it.
  • Flowers had been something she loved, saying she "needed them to breathe". She kept a variety of flowers in various size vases throughout the summer house. Her favorite flowers were peonies, which she kept in a vase on her nightstand so they were "the first thing she saw in the morning".
  • She "knew" that one of her sons would end up with Belly and even told the young girl she had her blessing to marry one of her boys, commenting she would hate to lose them to anyone else. However, in her letter to Belly for her wedding day, she did acknowledge the possibility that Belly would not end up with one of her sons.
  • According to Belly, Susannah was always on a diet and watched what she ate.
  • Susannah held a liking for sea shells. She kept them in hurricane vases in the house as well. Whenever she walked on the beach, she would always come back with a handful of shells and show them to everyone.
  • According to Conrad, she was big on thank-you cards.
  • Before her death, she wrote hand written letters to her sons, Belly and Steven to read on their wedding days. While the readers got to see the letter she left for Belly to read, we do not know what she wrote for the boys. However, it is discovered that she accidentally mixed up Conrad and Jeremiah's letters together. This is revealed when Conrad gave Jeremiah the enveloped letter addressed for him, but the latter brother found that the letter inside was meant for Conrad. Jeremiah later tells Belly that one thing Susannah wrote in the letter to Conrad is how she only ever saw him in love once - with Belly.