Expat Authors Put Their Love of Mexico Into Mystery Novels

Leigh Thelmadatter - MexicoNewsDaily.com
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May 22, 2022




Jinx Schwartz and John Scherber both draw from their time living here for settings and plots (MND)

I am a fan of nonfiction writing, especially about Mexico, but sometimes it is more fun, and more insightful, to read something fictional set in our adopted home.

There is no lack of talent among the many foreigners who live here and find Mexico to be an inspiration. But two have caught my attention because both draw heavily from their many years in the country, are rather prolific and are both are known for writing mysteries/whodunnits.

Jinx Schwartz’s work focuses on protagonist Hetta Coffey, a “sassy Texan with a snazzy yacht, and she’s not afraid to use it!”

Unsurprisingly, Hetta’s life draws from Schwartz’s own. Born and raised in Texas, she says she has a “natural affinity” for Mexico.

Her nomadic life brought her to San Francisco, where she met and married a naval officer. The newlyweds took his boat from there to Baja California, and when they rounded Los Cabos into the Gulf of California, they fell in love with the sea and its desert coasts. In the end, the Schwartzes spent the most of 30 years on a boat in that area, only leaving to escape hurricane season.

Schwartz draws heavily from her real-life experience as a foreigner living and exploring Mexico through the couple’s boat.

John Scherber’s main protagonist for his Murder in Mexico series is named Paul Zacher. All the stories are based in the mountain city of San Miguel de Allende. Scherber’s Mexican inspiration began before he even got here.

He grew up in Minneapolis and discovered a talent for writing in high school. In 1964, he went to San Francisco to begin a writing career, but after writing two books that he says “were not very good,” he all but quit at age 25.

Despite several attempts to get back on track, he would not write seriously again until he was 62.

All of author John Scherber’s 31 books in his Murder in Mexico series of mystery novels have been set in San Miguel de Allende Guanajuato.

Read the rest at MexicoNewsDaily.com

Related: She Paints to Lift the Lives of Poor Mexican Kids (Ozaukee Press)

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