Rafael Lopez  header

Literary Events in San Miguel de Allende

September 8, 2016: Literary Sala Reading

Date: Thursday, September 8, 2016
Time: 5:00–7:00 p.m.
Location: Hotel Aldea
Ancha de San Antonio #15

Admission: $50 pesos for Literary Sala members, $100 for non-members. Includes wine reception. Tickets available at the door.

Murder, Mayhem, and Macho Men Make Their Way To The September Literary Sala!

By Carole Schor

Detectives and murders and spies, oh my! Join us for a most exciting evening of murder, mayhem and espionage—both nonfiction and fiction—on September 8 with Heribert von Feilitzsch’s fascinating revelations about German espionage in Mexico during World War I; and Tim Wilson, reading from the first book in his new detective series, Mezcalero.

Heribert von Feilitzsch

Heribert von FeiitzschMexican/US border stories abound in today’s news, but our stories are nothing new. During World War I, German secret agents known as the Secret War Council formed the first foreign terror cell known to have operated in the United States, provoking acts of sabotage and labor unrest, and proving hard to prosecute. German spies actually brought the United States to the brink of war with Mexico on several occasions and infiltrated the highest levels of the Wilson administration, Wall Street, and industry.

Heribert von Feilitzsch has written an eye-opening book, The Mexican Front in the Great War, an expose about Felix A. Sommerfeld, a German secret service agent in Mexico, chief of the Mexican Secret Service under President Madero, and a diplomat and arms dealer for Pancho Villa. At the same time, he was running the Mexican portion of Germany’s war strategy in North America. As Heribert will tell you, “Hold on to your seats. A story like this could not be invented. Sommerfeld makes James Bond and Jason Bourne look like amateurs. He was by any account the most influential foreigner in the Mexican Revolution. He was also Germany’s most influential secret agent in World War I!”

While working as a mining engineer in northern Mexico, Sommerfeld became an informant for the German government. During the Mexican Revolution, he ostensibly wrote for the AP news but filed regular intelligence reports to the Germans. In his function as a specialist on Mexican affairs, he helped the German government sell arms and ammunition they had bought to keep them out of enemy hands. Sommerfeld was a successful spy, a masterful manipulator, and a ruthless power broker. Was he a traitor, a criminal, a liar? Possibly, but though he was feared by his enemies on all three military fronts, he was loyal to his friends, friends also on all sides of the three countries’ militaries and governments.

Tim Wilson

T.E. (Tim) Wilson is a Canadian author who has spent much of his life living and writing in Latin America. His experience includes a stint as a human rights observer in post-conflict Guatemala with the Network in Solidarity with the People of Guatemala (NISGUA), and his work as a journalist, which has taken him from the high Sierras to the depths of Mexico’s prison system. Tim works now as a journalist in Mexico, both for the mainstream press and at his blog, La politica es la politica, which covers modern Mexican issues like drugs and violence and corruption.

And now he is the author of a series of crime novels, the first being Mezcalero. Detective Sanchez is on the hunt for a missing Canadian woman on the Pacific Coast of Mexico. He is one of the toughest, smartest and most reckless detectives in all of Mexico, a manly man of machismo and bravado.

But surprise: This tough Ernesto Sánchez was born Cristina Sánchez in Mexico City. The family was in the drug trade: Cristina’s father and uncle acted as middlemen for the Cali cartel, moving cocaine from Colombia to the United States. It was a tough, dangerous business, and when things got hot, the family migrated to safety in Canada. Cristina was sixteen. Soon after, Cristina transitioned to being Ernesto.

Wilson derives a lot of inspiration from Mexico, a country he feels is more tolerant and open-minded than many might believe, hence the ease of acceptance by Mexicans of his trans-hero. He first came to Mexico in his mid-twenties and says, “Right away, Mexico blew my mind! Mexico stimulates me almost on a biological level. How could this place not inspire a person to write? In Mexico I feel that I can push some narrative boundaries that would be taboo in Canada, where the heroes tend to be good citizens, and the anti-hero is, at best, an eccentric.”


Join us for a testosterone-filled evening (with a little bit of estrogen on the side!) on September 8 at 5 PM at the Hotel La Aldea on the Ancha. Admission is 50 pesos for members and 100 pesos for non-members, including a wine and snack reception.

Membership in the Literary Sala supports ­not only the literary life of San Miguel including scholarships for teens and reading projects for children in the campo, it also offers attractive benefits like reading groups, discounts at the monthly author readings, as well as discounts and priority seating at the Annual Writers’ Conference. A Membership Table will be available at the Sala event.

Also at this Literary Sala event, it will be possible to purchase tickets to Writers’ Conference events or to purchase a Conference package. For more information visit sanmiguelwritersconference.org.