James A. Jacobs will be giving an Author Talk Sunday, Oct. 30 at 4 p.m. at San Geronimo Valley Community Center regarding his recent historical thriller Days of the Dead. Set in Mexico 1968, the year of the Olympics but also the first and worst government massacre of activist students and their supporters — men, women and children: The Tlatelolco Massacre. Focus will be on elements of memoir (James worked for U.P.I. during that time and witnessed many of the events portrayed in the novel) and themes of ecumenism and diversity, especially as it relates to the main character, Daniel Mendoza, a 28-year-old American journalist who tries, unsuccessfully, to intervene between government forces and activist students intent on shutting down the Olympics as well as reforming government.
While the historical backdrop is the Tlatelolco Massacre, the novel also focuses on Daniel Mendoza’s search for his wife, 8-year-old daughter, and activist nursing student friend who were disappeared after the massacre. A harrowing rescue mission occurs that takes Daniel to the Pacific Coast Sierras and back again to Mexico City.
“I enjoyed reading Days of the Dead very much, including the ‘craft’ of your work as you tell your story. All the puzzle pieces fit together in a sensible though complex way. I especially liked the shifts in time, giving background information from the prequel Mendoza novel Transgressions. The use of different narrators is masterful.”
Clark Sturges, Devil Mountain Books
For information about directions, see the SGVCC website. To learn more about the novel, see the author’s website:www.jamesajacobs.com.