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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I hope you will forgive me for my lack of experience at doing this.
But.....
My strong enjoyment of this book(s) causes me to want to share my opinions and ask Jeffry Hepple to share some of his thoughts with all.
This is not a Book Klub it is a discussion thread, so welcome and enjoy. I set no rules (other than the normal ones of KB and human decency).
Also SPOILER notice. We will be talking about things that can enhance your enjoyment of the works but also can expose details if you have not yet read them. So I suggest that you read them and then come back and join in.
I will start out by saying that I enjoyed these two books very much and I have already posted mini review and told Jeff in a PM.
Observations: the books have many typos. It sometimes seemed that there was one on each page. But the book was so engrossing that I barely noticed.
I did some quick Wikipedia research on the subject and found that the historical perspective is correct and it seems to me that the embellishments follow acceptable paths. The double time-line stories is a great technique. More later. Please join in.
 

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Thank you for starting the thread, Geoff.

I think you're being too kind about the typos, however. I am a notoriously fumbled fingered typist and for some reason cannot see my own mistakes. Our own GertieKindle has been slaving over the original manuscript for a very long time and expects to send me her last pages of edits on Sunday. I'm hoping to have new editions published with all Gertie's corrections by the following week.

Malintzin Tenepal, the hereditary Princess of Quetzalcoatl, who became known as La Malinche during the Conquest, vanished from history after giving birth to Cortes's son. Most of what I've written about her after that time is fiction or based upon unsubstantiated rumor. What really happened to Montezuma's treasure I leave to the reader.

Many of the events of violence along the Mexican border have been lifted directly from current news stories. The State Department's warning in the book was quoted verbatim from the official web site.

I will of course be happy to answer any specific questions about the work.

I sincerely appreciate all of the kind words and the criticism from KindleBoards members. You folks have helped me imeasurably and I'll always be grateful.

Jeff

 

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Hi Geoff and Jeff, and everyone else who will join in here!

I am happy to participate in this discussion, I really love TTOLM vol I, I haven't even read vol II yet (hangs head down in shame).

I have to leave for the eye doctor now for a regular exam, so won't be able to say much now except that I am thrilled to be here to enjoy further in depth discussions; Here is a little to start with, might as well start at the beginning...

I really like how the story began with the press report and the arguments, I didn't know it was a true account at first. The book was full of surprises as to the reality of the history for me. I thought it was all fiction but quite a bit of actual history enfolds all areas of this story. It is like a history lesson along with a good book. Should school have been this way, I might have paid attention.

Okay, now I have got to leave so I am not late.

I will be back later so have fun everyone,

-Sailor
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I thought the interspersed Talk Radio sessions added dimension to the storyline.
I also thought the dual story reveal of the old manuscripts and the current events was extremely entertaining.  Did anyone find it irritating?  Or did everyone else also enjoy this?
Jeff, I felt that the central character (the lynchpin, if you will) was Link.  Was this true, or did I just read it that way?  Also wondering if you identified with him. I ask this because Robert Heinlein always wrote himself into his books.  He was often not the lead character but the "old man".  In Stranger in a Strange Land he was not Valentine Michael Smith but was Jubal Harshaw. There are other illustrations for Heinlein.  Is this true for you?
Got other questions but will slip them in now and then.
 

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geoffthomas said:
I thought the interspersed Talk Radio sessions added dimension to the storyline.
As I was proofing the manuscript, I told Jeff that I thought this was a wonderful way of bringing the outside world into the events and different perspectives to what was going on.

I also thought the dual story reveal of the old manuscripts and the current events was extremely entertaining. Did anyone find it irritating? Or did everyone else also enjoy this?
I definitely enjoyed this aspect. It was more than just the old and the new. Several stories were going on at the same time ... cliffhanger after cliffhanger. You could see how Maggie's rash actions were affecting so many other people and she was totally unaware of what was going on. I sort of call Vol. 2 "Maggie grows up." :D

Jeff, I felt that the central character (the lynchpin, if you will) was Link. Was this true, or did I just read it that way? Also wondering if you identified with him. I ask this because Robert Heinlein always wrote himself into his books. He was often not the lead character but the "old man". In Stranger in a Strange Land he was not Valentine Michael Smith but was Jubal Harshaw. There are other illustrations for Heinlein. Is this true for you?
Got other questions but will slip them in now and then.
I agree that Link did become the central character. He became the common denominator between the characters and the story. I had to laugh at his troubles with the women in his life. l laughed out loud when he said that with so many women telling him to "forget it," he was going to get Alzheimer's. Too funny.

Jeff, placing Dona Marina with the Coronado expedition was brilliant.

One of the things I really liked about these books, is that you get the sense that you can trust Jeff to be historically accurate. While there is no proof that Dona Marina was with Coronado, it is definitely plausible.

I'll be reading Gone for a Soldier, next. Jeff, I'm not too far from Bergen County right now. And I've always been a fan of the Bergen County Cadets (originally the Garfield Cadets and now just The Cadets).
 

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geoffthomas said:
Jeff, I felt that the central character (the lynchpin, if you will) was Link. Was this true, or did I just read it that way?
The way you read it is the only real truth, Geoff. When I started writing I intended to make Maggie de Vega the central character but Link got bigger as the story developed.

geoffthomas said:
Also wondering if you identified with him (Link). I ask this because Robert Heinlein always wrote himself into his books. He was often not the lead character but the "old man". In Stranger in a Strange Land he was not Valentine Michael Smith but was Jubal Harshaw. There are other illustrations for Heinlein. Is this true for you?
You won't find me anywhere in the book but you'll find Link in the next. :)

Gertie Kindle 'Turn to Page 390' said:
I'll be reading Gone for a Soldier, next. Jeff, I'm not too far from Bergen County right now.
Gertie, wave at the bones of my ancestors as you go by Bergen County and thank you for all your editing.

sailor said:
I am happy to participate in this discussion, I really love TTOLM
Sailor, great video. Rather than cluttering up your thread let me thank you here.
 

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Would anyone else like to see Jeff write something featuring Tory and Lance?  I wasn't too crazy about Tory at first.  I couldn't get a handle on who she was.  She got better as she developed a relationship with Maggie and Link.  When Lance came along, Tory became a person.  He really compliments her, and I love the way he handles her. 

Jeff, you teased us poor readers with Lance's background, now, I need to know more.  Perhaps a series of short story adventures (200 pages?), compiled into an omnibus, where info about Lance is leaked to us gradually? 
 

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Having been leisurely swimming in Jeff's Gone for a Soldier, I look forward to LaMalinche, which is my considerable TBR pile - but although life isn;t short, I get to it before I reach the clearing at the end of the path.

Edward C. Patterson
author of stuff
 

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Volume 2 is even more exciting and a not putter downer!  It took me some time to decide to "slog" (Jeff's words  ;) ) through the Treasure (I have a definite problem typing with that La M word) and even though I have not finished Vol 2. it is just a matter of time, get me off of KB and I'll have time to read  :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
More questios and comments:

I thought that violence and sex were kept to a perfectly acceptable level.
Especially in the world of Cortes, there was a lot of Aztec bloodletting that was a part of life.
But we did not dwell on it for sensationalism.  I appreciated that.

The mainline characters were people of means (outright wealth in some cases).
Margaret and her family were aristocracy and wealthy.
Link was actually VERY well-off. (at one time it was said that maybe he had more money than the Contessa).
Tory was brought up with money too.  Jim managed to make a lot with renting out his mercs.
And the ranchers from Chihuahua, Tom and Bill Hurst had a lot of money too.
Heck even the albino German asssassins had a castle.
And of course in the backstory, the spaniards had government money and the Aztecs we met were mostly of the  aristocracy.
So.....not too many common folk here.  These people could rent a hummer when they wanted to or buy a speed boat or guns (even illegal ones).  Did you purposely choose to write about people without monetary challenges?  It is not that I object.  I like to read the story the way the author wrote it.  I was just wondering.
 

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Anju No. 469 said:
Volume 2 is even more exciting and a not putter downer! It took me some time to decide to "slog" (Jeff's words ;) ) through the Treasure (I have a definite problem typing with that La M word) and even though I have not finished Vol 2. it is just a matter of time, get me off of KB and I'll have time to read :D
Yes, I definitely agree with that. Still a lot of action, maybe even more, and the characters grew and developed.
 

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geoffthomas said:
The mainline characters were people of means (outright wealth in some cases).
Margaret and her family were aristocracy and wealthy.
Link was actually VERY well-off. (at one time it was said that maybe he had more money than the Contessa).
Tory was brought up with money too. Jim managed to make a lot with renting out his mercs.
And the ranchers from Chihuahua, Tom and Bill Hurst had a lot of money too.
Heck even the albino German asssassins had a castle.
And of course in the backstory, the spaniards had government money and the Aztecs we met were mostly of the aristocracy.
So.....not too many common folk here. These people could rent a hummer when they wanted to or buy a speed boat or guns (even illegal ones). Did you purposely choose to write about people without monetary challenges? It is not that I object. I like to read the story the way the author wrote it. I was just wondering.
One of the unfortunate realities of life is that, when confronted with trouble, those with money have more alternatives. Without Link and his money, Maggie would have been unable to undertake her treaure hunt and the story would have ended there.

As far as the other characters are concerned, La Malinche was in fact a princess in Montezuma's Court and the Emperor Montezuma was fabulously rich. Cortes and his men said that they came to the New World to spread the word of God and to get rich.

Jim Dennison, Link's Army buddy, retired after 20 years and used his military training to build a lucrative, if somewhat shadowy, private business. Although it isn't really clear in this book, his main source of income was hostage rescue. The number of hostages taken in Columbia by FARC alone is staggering. There's a closet industry in hostage rescue and negotiations that most of us don't know exists. We'll learn more about this in Lonely Is The Soldier. Anyone interested in the subject of FARC in Columbia might like this book:



$9.99

Some of the other characters, such as FBI Special Agent Padilla and his cousin Elena were just working people but your observation is correct, most of the characters are indeed wealthy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Gertie Kindle 'Turn to Page 390' said:
Would anyone else like to see Jeff write something featuring Tory and Lance? I wasn't too crazy about Tory at first. I couldn't get a handle on who she was. She got better as she developed a relationship with Maggie and Link. When Lance came along, Tory became a person. He really compliments her, and I love the way he handles her.

Jeff, you teased us poor readers with Lance's background, now, I need to know more. Perhaps a series of short story adventures (200 pages?), compiled into an omnibus, where info about Lance is leaked to us gradually?
Gertie,
I would love to see Jeff write more about Tory and Lance's future/adventures.
I would also like to see a story about Lance's background.
Also I think that there must be several books possible about Link.
And I will read them all.
I am a hooked fan.
 

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geoffthomas said:
I also thought the dual story reveal of the old manuscripts and the current events was extremely entertaining. Did anyone find it irritating? Or did everyone else also enjoy this?
I think the duel story added so much more dimension that you couldn't be bored with the story. I really loved this fact about the book. Most authors could never have pulled this off, but Jeff made it flow smoothly, AND, you could remember where it was you left off because he brought you right back to the story time-line of where you needed to be. I was amazed with this part. I also loved reading about Malitzin Tenepal's time frame and the history that went on back then.

Just to share with you all, when I read books, I really have a problem with comprehension. This is my first book discussion and it is hard for me to see the depth of what all of you have put into this; you are all skilled literary readers, I am a simple reader. It is good to know even though we have this difference, Jeff's story still comes across as an excellent read.

I will read more posts and answer more later, you are all so far ahead of me, I will catch up. So much in-depth analysis here, this is a great discussion. I am seeing things that I have missed in the story and will need to go back and reread it again. ;D

-sailor
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
sailor said:
I am seeing things that I have missed in the story and will need to go back and reread it again. ;D

-sailor
Any book that I really enjoy I wind up re-reading. There are a couple of C.J. Cherryh's books that I have read more than 5 times. And I will be re-reading this one. I have already gone back to re-read sections so that I can get my thoughts organized.
 

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Jeff said:
We'll learn more about this in Lonely Is The Soldier.
Is this what you are working on now?

Some of the other characters, such as FBI Special Agent Padilla and his cousin Elena were just working people but your observation is correct, most of the characters are indeed wealthy.
You really had me going with Padilla. I thought for sure he was going be killed at some point. First the jail, then the hospital where Elena was killed. That really surprised me. She knew, though, didn't she. She wasn't taking a risk going to the clinic. She wanted it to happen that way.

One of the things I found interesting about the book is the way you handled the deaths of the evil-doers. They were so arrogant, so wrapped up in their own power, it never entered their minds that they might be vulnerable. Ramirez left himself open to La Gata and one swipe of her stilleto. La Gata, herself, believes in her nine lives and never figures that a simple peasant woman would step out from behind a tree and decapitate her. Duran in his arrogance, places himself directly into the clutches of Mueller, who casually pulls out a gun and shoots him between the eyes in the middle of a conversation. It never occurs to any of these people that someone might actually do unto them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I am always a little curious about an author's goals, if there are any.
I recall reading that Raymond Feist said that he was just trying to "write a good yarn" (I hope I got that right).
And others put forth their politica agendas: Gulliver's Travels comes to mind as well as Robert Heinlein writing Starship Trooper (good book, not such a good movie) where he detailed his Rome/Sparta concept of citizenship.
Did you have any desires to suggest how to fix things, or just right a page-turner or anything?
 

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Geoff,

Obviously my first goal was to write a book that readers would enjoy but I had three distinct sub-goals in mind while writing The Treasure of La Malinche that almost overrode the first:

1. I wanted my Grandson, Joshua Martinez, to be proud of his American heritage, both European and Native.
2. I wanted the America public to be more aware of the potential threat of the Mexican Government melting down and spinning into anarchy.
3. I wanted to tell the little known story of La Malinche and of the Spanish Conquest.

To accomplish those goals I decided to interweave two distinct and separate story lines that had two contrasting writing styles. The Dona Marina memoirs has a single voice throughout, almost no dialog and is written using very long run-on sentences and the formal style of the 16th century. The modern adventure story has no character point of view, is nearly 100% dialog, and uses a very loose almost colloquial style.

One unforeseen consequence of the above decisions was a book that is really too big for any bookstore and for many readers. Thanks to the Amazon Kindle however, most readers don't know that they tackled a half million word book until they're finished.

Gertie,

Yes, the prequel to The Treasure of La Malinche is called Lonely Is The Soldier. It begins with Lieutenant R.A. Lincoln being selected and trained as a member of 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment -Delta and follows his career to the failed hostage release in Iran, the successful hostage release in Panama, through the drug wars in Columbia and the turmoil in the Persian Gulf.

Thank you all very much,

Jeff
 

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Jeff said:
To accomplish those goals I decided to interweave two distinct and separate story lines that had two contrasting writing styles. The Dona Marina memoirs has a single voice throughout, almost no dialog and is written using very long run-on sentences and the formal style of the 16th century. The modern adventure story has no character point of view, is nearly 100% dialog, and uses a very loose almost colloquial style.
That's one of the things that make the books so interesting. The reader can fall into more than one mode. I would add the talk radio voice as a third.

One unforeseen consequence of the above decisions was a book that is really too big for any bookstore and for many readers. Thanks to the Amazon Kindle however, most readers don't know that they tackled a half million word book until they're finished.
I can handle knowing that the books are about 1200 pages. I read those kinds of blockbusters all the time. But 500,000 words sounds a bit overwhelming.

Gertie,

Yes, the prequel to The Treasure of La Malinche is called Lonely Is The Soldier. It begins with Lieutenant R.A. Lincoln being selected and trained as a Special Forces - Delta Operator and follows his career to the failed hostage release in Iran, the successful hostage release in Panama, through the drug wars in Columbia and the turmoil in the Persian Gulf.
We shall eagerly await the prequel, but please don't tell us how many words. :D
 
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