Sometimes even an author's biggest fans may be surprised by some new things they can learn about their favorite author. Today, author David Pereda is sharing some new insights into himself and his writing. You can also take a peek inside his new book, The Wall, and then download your own copy. Be sure to follow the tour for even more, leaving questions and comments along the way. Best of luck entering the giveaway!
THOMAS BERTRAM is an American living in San Salvador with his fiancée CECILIA. They own a popular neighborhood restaurant and plan to wed soon. Thomas's dream is to obtain a resident visa for Cecilia and return to the United States.
DOMINGO JIMENEZ and his wife BLANCA own a small repair shop across the street. Domingo's dream is to move to America as well so that his seven-year-old daughter NANCY can grow up speaking English and having a good education and a better life than he and Blanca had.
When armed gang members invade their neighborhood to demand "protection" money and threaten them with death if they don't pay, Thomas and Domingo's dreams for the future take on a new perspective. They decide to flee the country with their families through Guatemala and Mexico to seek asylum in the United States.
But their journey is more challenging than expected, and they face a myriad of difficulties and must overcome multiple obstacles that put not only their dreams but also their lives at risk.
Thomas’s first impression was that Ciudad Juarez was a city suffering from schizophrenia.
Based on the Reforma newspaper article he was skimming before he fell asleep, the schizophrenia was even more severe than it appeared from the airplane window. According to the report, murderous dark forces moved underground through the city with impunity. Coexisting with a well-educated and law-abiding middle class breathed some of the world's most feared and violent drug cartels. And while the local police bragged about having achieved a drastic reduction in crime over the past decade, more than 1,000 women had been murdered—and over 3,000 reported missing during the same period.
The article hinted at a police-force cover-up—and even possible police involvement—and blamed the crimes on the transient population seeking to cross the border illegally into the United States. It ended with an impassioned plea to Mexican authorities.
It all read like blah-blah-blah to Thomas.
As the jetliner banked for a runway approach, he spotted some of the transient population described in the article. Small groups of people dotted the protracted chain-link fence, plastic bags either slung over their shoulders or resting on the ground at their feet. Thomas wondered how much the article's writer had been paid to blame those poor souls whose only desire was to find a better life in the United States.
Cecilia saw them too. “What are those people doing?”
“Waiting for night,” Thomas said as the plane straightened, and he lost sight of the fence. “To cross to the other side.”
The pilot landed with a jolt. After a couple of bounces that elicited frightened cries from alarmed passengers, the aircraft rolled to a stop on the tarmac in front of an oblong cream-colored building. Cecilia, Alex, and Thomas deplaned and were guided toward one of the doors by uniformed immigration officials. The sun was so hot that Thomas’s skin crinkled.
“We have to go through immigration?” Thomas asked, raising an eyebrow. “I thought we were in Mexico.”
“Border towns in Mexico always check your documents,” Alex said. “I don’t know why. I guess it’s in case you’re planning to cross into the United States illegally.”
Cecilia glanced at Thomas with concern, and he noted the dark circles under her eyes.
***Followers of the GoddessFish Tour can now receive an exclusive and hefty discount on the ebook price of The Wall - from $6.99 to only $2.99. Here are the details:
1) Go to https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1084282
2) Choose to Buy the book
3) Select the format when prompted.
4) When checking out, enter this discount: TV96K
5) Follow directions to check out and download the book and pay only $2.99 instead of $6.99.
--> The code TV96K can be distributed to anyone you'd like without limit. The coupon expires on December 31, 2021.
This discount will also become available at Barnes & Noble, Apple Store, and other ebook retailers but it may take up to 72 hours for the price to be updated on those platforms. Meanwhile, ordering it from Smashwords will work on any ebook platform and device.***
There are many things about me fans may not know. However, I don’t want fans to know everything about me, either, so I’ll stick in this article to stuff about me I don’t mind sharing.
The first one is that my most successful book is one my fans have probably never read, or, if they did, they didn’t know I wrote it. The book sold 50,000 copies, and it was famous for a while. I wrote it under a pen name, which I won’t disclose, and it was an erotic novel. My then-agent wanted me to write more, but I declined. My first daughter had just been born, and I didn’t want her growing up and asking me one day, “What kind of books do you write, dad?” And me answering, “I write erotic books, honey.”
So, I didn’t write any more erotic books.
The second thing my fans may not know about me, since I have published eleven novels and several of them have earned literary awards, is that English is my second language. I’m an immigrant myself, which helped me identify with the characters when writing THE WALL. I was a penniless nineteen-year-old non-English speaker when I arrived in America, clutching my immigration papers. While that happened a long time ago, I have never forgotten those early memories. I came to the United States seeking the American Dream: to be successful and have a better life than the one I had in my country of birth.
And I have.
My life has been a fantastic rollercoaster ride. I have been a millionaire three times, and three times I have lost everything and had to start with nothing all over again. I have been married several times to lovely and awesome women from different countries, including a French aristocrat who introduced me to European nobility, that gave me five beautiful children. I have traveled worldwide on business and pleasure to more than thirty countries, including those described in THE WALL. I have earned three college degrees: English Literature, Mathematics, and an MBA. I have lived in six different countries and learned four languages, including those spoken in the book. I have competed in show jumping, equestrian events, and track and won multiple medals and ribbons. And I have done a lot of crazy but fulfilling things too: race sports cars, jump obstacles higher than Michael Jordan on horseback, ride racing camels in the Arabian desert, and a few other things that bring smiles to my lips but that I will never share with anyone because I’m not the kiss-and-tell type.
Perhaps the most revealing thing about me, and possibly the most unexpected, is that I’m a cowboy at heart. I love the cowboy ideal, whether real or not—honesty, loyalty, and courage. In my teens, I dreamed of running away to Canada and becoming a cowboy. I still dream of owning a ranch with horses and cattle and living a cowboy life.
Who knows, now that my youngest daughter is going away to college, I may just do that. I love the smell of horse sweat in the morning.
Before devoting his time solely to writing and teaching, Pereda had a successful international consulting career with global giant Booz Allen Hamilton, where he worked with the governments of Mexico, Venezuela, Peru, and Qatar, among others.
A member of MENSA, Pereda earned his MBA from Pepperdine University in California. He earned BA degrees in English literature and mathematics at the University of South Florida in Tampa. He loves sports and has won many prizes competing in track and show-jumping equestrian events.
Pereda lives in Asheville, North Carolina, where he teaches mathematics and English at the Asheville-Buncombe Community College.
Visit him online at: www.davidpereda.com
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