3 years later

Here are some pictures of Guadalupe, Ica, Peru from June 22, 2010.  The earthquake occurred August 15, 2007.  The white USAid tents and the ruins in these pictures are where people are still living almost three years after the earthquake destroyed their homes.  I should have been shocked at the lack of progress in rebuilding the town but honestly it wasn’t a big surprise.  The tents are far from the ideal home to live in.  Temperatures go down to 50 degrees at night and in addition to the cold, the wind blowing the thick plastic (which is supported by a wooden frame) around would keep even a deep sleeper awake.

Side By Side

The cover of my new book, while not exactly reflective of the dark action of the book, is special to me for two reasons:

  1. My father drew it ♥
  2. I saw the destruction of the actual building the day after the earthquake
Surviving the Earthquake
The signs are different in the drawing: día del Pisco Sour is a take on a flyer posted about a celebration of a Peruvian cocktail. The Peru sign on the right is a campaign to promote Peruvian tourism.

Book Launch!

Tremor in the Hills

I am so excited to announce the launch of Tremor in the Hills on Amazon!

It’s been 11-1/2 years since the earthquake that started this journey but natural disaster relief continues to be a world wide necessity. With this book, and its Kindle version, I hope to do my part to improve the state of disaster victims’ lives.

Visit the links above and Thank you for your support!

Book Blurb and Poll

Tamara goes back to her family’s hometown one year after a deadly earthquake to find that on the surface, not much has changed. After a young anti-corruption activist is murdered and Tamara’s best friend disappears, she is caught between two social classes that clash as the police try to find the killer. Did someone in her rich landowner family’s circle kill the boy, or was his death a result of the dark secrets he had been hiding?

Set in the desert off the coast of Perú, Tremor in the Hills is a young adult mystery that deals with the struggles of earthquake relief, corruption and the mental trauma that major natural disasters cause.


To Complain or Not to Complain… that’s hardly the question

Because I’m a survivor (see previous posts) I try hard not to complain about things. It is a struggle since I’m a natural pessimist, but I know that I need to be grateful for where I live and all of the things that I have. I remind myself that there are still people living in tents because of a natural – or man made – disaster; innocent people caught up in conflicts; many other awful things happening.

So I post this not just for myself and my friend, two mothers who United Airlines involuntarily bumped from their flight on Christmas Day, thereby separating them from their families and stranding us in Houston – but for the many people whose experiences have been much worse.

I think, for example, of the case that the taxi driver in Houston told us after we complained to him of our circumstance. Two women in their eighties arrive in Texas knowing little English. They are bumped from their flight. Unable to defend themselves, they are left with absolutely no compensation – certainly not the amount that they should get, and not even with a basic hotel room voucher. The taxi driver felt so sorry for them that he drove them to his hotel and put them up for the night at his own expense.

Yes, there is humanity left in this world. It doesn’t seem to be found in the upper management or boards of airline companies though.

So if you also have had any issue, make sure you visit flyersrights.org and sign their petition so that Congress passes the Airline Passengers Bill of Rights that has been stalled for over a decade.


Going on the Radio: Brilliant. Help!

Tomorrow, Sunday December 13th I’ll be going on the radio for the first time, thanks to my childhood friend. I’ll be talking about Never Shaken:Tales of Survival, a book I self published a few years ago. The book was a large undertaking – small, perhaps, in comparison to the world of traditionally published non-fiction out there – but the heart and soul of thirteen earthquake survivors are to be found in the true stories collected, transcribed, edited and sometimes translated by me.

It’s a book about sharing; about community healing through writing, and a pay-it-forward if I can to organizations that help with the aftermath of natural disasters. I’d love your support – tune in tomorrow:



And click below – your support means a lot!

QR code Never Shaken

Getting Out

I love Amazon – the ability to search for anything and find almost everything, click and it’s on its way is awesome – but it is also wonderful to find these independent bookstores where the people are friendly and can give personal recommendations. I was here today for a Mystery Writers of America meeting; fun stuff listening to a retired FBI agent!