Kelly Romo currently lives in Oregon where she teaches language arts, literature, and social studies. She loves the outdoors; hiking, kayaking, and camping. Kelly grew up in Fontana, California, running around with all her thrill-seeking cousins and siblings; jumping off cliffs into the Colorado River, exploring caves on the beaches of Mexico, riding dirt bikes, water skiing, and snow skiing. Kelly has a Master of Fine Arts in Writing and a Master of Arts in Teaching.
Whistling Women is her debut novel and came out of her love for San Diego and Balboa Park. Even though the characters are all works of fiction, the world’s fair, nudist colony, and famous figures are based on the historical facts of the 1935 California Pacific International Exposition.
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A BURIED SECRET KEEPS TWO SISTERS APART
Life went terribly wrong for Addie Bates in San Diego, and she'd been running from those memories ever since. For fifteen years, the Sleepy Valley Nudist Colony has provided a safe haven for Addie to hide from the crime she committed. But when the residents pack up to go on exhibit at the 1935 world's fair in San Diego, Addie returns and must face the thrilling yet terrifying prospect of reuniting with her estranged sister, Wavey.
Addie isn't the only one interested in a reunion. When her niece, Rumor, discovers she has an aunt, Rumor is determined to bring her family together. But it is not so easy when the women are forced to confront family secrets, past and present.
Set against the backdrop of the 1935 world's fair, Whistling Women explores the complex relationships between sisters, the sacrifices required to protect family, and the lasting consequences of a single impulsive act.
A YOUNG WOMAN GETS CAUGHT UP IN A REBELLION AGAINST THE MEXICAN GOVERNMENT
Coming July 15th
After her brother is murdered on a citrus ranch in Southern California, a powerful man repatriates Mariana’s family back to Mexico at gunpoint. Her family struggles to make a living in Tijuana, a rowdy border town filled with tourists escaping prohibition in the United States. Trying to better her life, Mariana ends up disgracing herself and being shipped off to her cousins in Guadalajara. There, she finds herself in a household of women involved in the rebellion.
It is the mid-1920s and the Mexican Government is enacting laws to restrict and outlaw the Catholic religion. Federal soldiers are murdering Catholic priests and massacring whole villages of men, women, and children who do not comply. They are hanging men in trees and from the telegraph poles along the railroad as a warning—yet the people, who call themselves Cristeros, continue to fight.
As Mariana witnesses the sheer determination of people sacrificing everything for what they believe in, she must discover her own strength in order to survive and reunite what is left of her own family—or become one of the thousands of martyrs willing to die.
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Larry Kirshbaum at LJK Literary Agency
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Tel: (917) 952-6042