While most authors produce fiction to provide readers with nothing but a quick thrill, David C. Edmonds (Chile 1963-65) is quickly building a reputation for intricate adventures that, as one reader put it, shouldn’t be read if one expects a good night’s sleep. His extensive travels in, and assignments to, Peru in the 1980s and 1990s exposed him to a culture in which kidnappings, assassinations, bombings, and torture were an everyday occurrence. While Edmonds won’t say how much of the narrative is true, these experiences provided the inspiration for what is now Lily of Peru in which love and terrorism collide in the international love story of a Florida university professor’s struggle to rescue the love of his life from a brutal war between the Peruvian government and a bizarre terrorist organization.
When university professor Markus Thorsen reads these words from the woman he’s loved since his Peace Corps days — Marisa with the long dark hair and sparkling blue eyes — he abandons his work at the university and flies to war-torn Peru. Once there, he hopes to whisk Marisa to safety, far away from the violence and her abusive Peruvian husband. But when he arrives in Lima, he’s confronted by a general with a subpoena, agents with guns, and the startling accusation that Marisa is a key figure in a brutal terrorist organization called the Shining Path. And the government wants his help in bringing her to justice.
His refusal to cooperate makes him a suspect as well, and he’s soon on the run, desperate to learn the truth and get her out of the country. But is she the Marisa of his dreams, the woman who goes limp with desire when he reads Neruda to her, or is she the bomb-throwing terrorist of her wanted posters? The truth lies somewhere down the road, and nothing is going to stop Markus from finding it — not the soldiers who dog his every step, not the spirits of Inca ruins where he takes refuge, not Marisa’s ex-husband who wants her back, and not the hostile natives and witches who chase him into the eastern jungles.
Markus planned on his Peruvian reunion resulting in happily ever after, but now he simply hopes he and Marisa make it out of the country alive.
David Edmonds is a former Marine, Peace Corps Volunteer, Senior Fulbright Professor of Economics, academic dean, and U.S. government official with long experience in Peru and other countries in Latin America. He’s the author, editor or ghostwriter of seven other books, including the award-winning Yankee Autumn in Acadiana: a Narrative of the great Texas Overland Expedition Throught Southwestern Louisiana October – December 1863. Dr. Edmonds grew up in Louisiana and Mississippi and studied at L.S.U., Notre Dame, Georgetown, George Washington and American University. He currently lives in Florida with his wife, Maria.
Much to Dave’s delight, in mid-February an excerpt of Lily of Peru was published in the largest English-language publication in Peru — PeruThisWeek.com.