CWI says aloha to Hawaii Pacific University professor Tyler McMahon this month. McMahon, who graduated from Boise State University with a Masters in Fiction Writing, is the editor of the Hawaii Pacific Review and author of the 2011 novel How the Mistakes Were Made. His visit to the Treasure Valley is part of a tour in support of his upcoming novel, Kilometer 99 (set to hit bookstores in June). On McMahon's website, tylermcmahon.net, the fast-paced thriller is described as the story of Malia and Ben, both volunteers, who meet and fall in love in El Salvador. When an earthquake ends Malia's project, the two grab an "old Jeep Cherokee, a wad of cash and their surfboards" and make plans for an "epic trip through South America. But just as they say goodbye to their gritty and beloved Salvadoran beach town, a mysterious American surfer known only as Pelochucho shows up--throwing cash around and persuading them to stay. Days become weeks; documents go missing; money gets tight. Suddenly, Ben and Malia can't leave. Caught between bizarre real estate offers, suspect drug deals and internal jealousies, this unlikely band of surfers, aid-workers and opportunists all struggle to find their way through a fallen world.
Early reviews are calling Kilometer 99, which is heavily influenced by McMahon's own experiences as a member of the Peace Corps in El Salvador, "un-put-downable."
While he's here, he'll also sit on the Treefort: Storyfort panel on publishing Friday, March 21, at 3:30 p.m. (See Culture, Page 25) as well as give a talk on Saturday, March 22, at 2:30 p.m. Both events are at the Sesqui-Shop, 1008 Main St.