Teaser Tuesday ~ Silvia Villalobos ~ Stranger of Friend


Silvia Villalobos, a native of Romania who lives immersed in the laid-back vibe of Southern California, is a writer of mystery novels and short fiction.  Her stories have appeared in The Riding Light Review, Pure Slush, and Red Fez, among other publications.  She is constantly drawn to premises filled with questions, which arouse feelings that are often beyond imagination yet seem real.  Her debut novel, Stranger or Friend, was published by Solstice Publishing, March 2015.  She is a member of Toastmasters International -- Valencia Club -- and its Vice President of Public Relations.  When not taking long walks through the local paseos or preparing a speech, she can be found writing or blogging.

The Story Behind Stranger or Friend, a literary mystery:

Inspiration, at times elusive, rushes at us like a storm of jagged images when a story must be told.  Such was the case in the writing of this mystery novel -- the culmination of two lives at a confluence of cultures: an Eastern European immigrant -- the author -- married to a California native of Hispanic descent. The result is a highly fictionalized story, an observation, of intersecting cultures, of newcomers and locals, the bumps along the way, discovery, rejection, and acceptance. This is the story of a woman going back home, only to find that home is no longer the place she remembers, or maybe never really knew. 


L.A. lawyer Zoe Sinclair finds her Wyoming hometown reeling from the murder of its most popular resident: her best friend, Lori. Not less unnerving are the strange cries coming from the woods. The lawyer inside the woman is prompted into action, but she meets resistance from a town wary of outsiders. When a second body is found and Zoe is threatened, the case turns personal. Under pressure from the sheriff to leave the probing to the police, and taunted by the killer’s subtle messages, Zoe finds herself trapped in a game of hunter and prey.


Someone had manipulated the case onto a dangerous path where friends suspected friends and neighbors distrusted one another …

He studied her, the woman from the city, likely an oddity to a man who’d never lived outside Pine Vale. She wasn’t a local anymore, but more or less a stranger ...  Zoe pulled her jacket tighter, hoping she'd make it through her first day home without having to explain she hadn't gone crazy in the city…

Fog rolled off the lake, filling the street. Puffy clouds gathered, ready to blanket the town with snow. Except for a few buildings, the old part of town didn't look much different from the dusty photos Mother kept in the attic. There was the hardware warehouse, the mortar and pestle handing outside the apothecary, revamped storefronts. Past Main, the road stretched below the endless sky, and in the distance the Laramie Mountains. Sights were as bright as her thoughts were dark ...

The author speaking at Toastmasters

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Thank you for having me on your blog, KC. And what a great blog it is.