Days of the Dead

MEXICO CITY, 1968 . . .

It's the year of the Olympics, the first sponsored by a developing country. There's a lot at stake, especially when activist students and thousands of supporters launch a summer-long protest aimed at reforming a ruthless, authoritarian government. Ten days before the games are to begin, government security forces plan an armed assault. The result: Hundreds of innocent victims are murdered and forcibly disappeared . . . and the games go on. Known as the Tlatelolco Massacre, it was the first and worst act of repression in the nation's modern history. In this historical thriller, Daniel Mendoza, a 28-year-old American journalist, violates his professional code by inserting himself into the conflict with a greater cause in mind: Avoiding a “final solution.” Instead, the crisis deepens, which threatens not only his life but also the lives of those dearest to him.​

Praise for Days of the Dead

“In this high-minded historical thriller, Jacobs portrays the murderous repression unleashed in 1968 by the Mexican government and an American journalist’s efforts to ameliorate a deepening crisis. A compelling, harrowing, realistic and moving story. The journalist’s subsequent mission to rescue his wife and daughter from the compound of the country’s most-wanted guerrilla leader is sensationally-plotted.” — USMC Captain (ret.) and FBI Special Agent (ret.) John E. Denton (International Espionage and Hostage Rescue), Knoxville, TN.

“In this sequel to the coming-of-age novel, Transgressions, Daniel Mendoza, 28, an ex-Marine boxing champion-turned journalist, is burned-out from covering the murder and mayhem of the Civil Rights crises in the U.S. and seeks escape to cover the Olympics in Mexico City. Instead, he’s plunged into an even-worse nightmare: The Tlatelolco massacre and the disappearance of his wife and daughter. Daniel undergoes a spiritual breakthrough which allows him to fully understand his personal and communal responsibilities. Set amidst personal and political turmoil, Jacobs has also crafted a beautiful and touching love story that is tragic but immensely uplifting.” 
— Rabbi Eric B. Wisnia, Congregation Beth Chaim, Princeton Junction, N.J.

“Within contained, beautiful prose, we follow Daniel Mendoza’s brooding introspection in search of the right moral choices. Set among the dreadful events of the 1968 Tlatelolco massacre of hundreds of students and their supporters in Mexico City, this novel could not be any more relevant in light of the 2014 disappearance and murder of activist students in the state of Guerrero.” — Isabel Izquierdo, Foreign Languages chairperson, Diablo Valley College, Pleasant Hill, CA.

“Exotic settings, exciting action, and well-executed dialogue all keep the reader moving along as the narrative pace quickens to unfold its story. Climactic, earth-quaking events make for an explosive ending.” — Russ Tarby, entertainment editor, Eagle Newspapers, Syracuse, N.Y.

“Jacobs’ sequel novel is set during the cultural clashes and civic unrest within the context of the 1968 Olympics and student protests in the U.S and worldwide. It features complex characters with devious motives as well as a detailed knowledge of Mexican political, religious, social and military cultures. The writing is crisp, and each chapter reads like a short story.” — Ron Cochran, PhD anthropologist and U.S. Army veteran, Billings, MT.

“Jacobs’ second novel featuring Daniel Mendoza takes us on a storied journey through the festivals and furies of a complex world that should be shockingly familiar to readers concerned with the glories and agonies of Mexico today. Mendoza works hard to keep the lid on extreme violence exercised by the Mexican government, including enforced disappearances of hundreds of the nation’s children. But that’s just the first act of Mendoza’s complicated mission to seek justice, retribution . . . and just possibly salvation. A searing but very satisfying story.” — Timothy Kennedy, PhD, University of Tampa, author of Where the Rivers Meet the Sky: A Collaborative Approach to Participatory Development.

By James A. Jacobs

Son of a professional boxer, the author earned degrees in English, Journalism, and Social Science from Syracuse University. An ex-Marine and former journalist, he lives with his wife, Susan, in San Rafael, California.  

ISBN: 978-1-4951-5480-5

Price: $16.95