Friday, November 1, 2013

Silent by Sara Alva

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Silent by Sara Alva

My guest today is author and friend, Sara Alva, whose newest novel is Silent. I first fell in love with Sara’s stories when I read Social Skills, a wonderful story of first love and painful social anxiety. Silent is a beautiful story about life as it really is for youth in a major metropolis. Sara is also a like-minded person who works tirelessly to help and advocate for our youth of today. Please join me in welcoming Sara Alva and Silent.

Silent Cover jpgAlex’s life as a teenager in South Central LA is far from perfect, but it’s his life, and he knows how to live it. He knows what role to play and what things to keep to himself. He’s got it all under control, until one lousy pair of shoes kicks him out of his world and lands him in a foster care group home.

Surrounded by strangers and trapped in a life where he could never belong, Alex turns to the only person lower on the social ladder than he is: a “special” mute boy. In Sebastian, Alex finds a safe place to store his secrets—those that sent him to foster care, and the deeper one that sets him apart from the other teenagers he knows. But Sebastian has secrets of his own, and when tragedy rips the two boys apart, Alex will stop at nothing to find the answers—even if it means dragging them both through a past full of wounds best left buried.

It might just be worth it, for the slim chance at love.

Available From: Amazon | ARe | Barnes&Noble

A Hundred Tiny Moments: Behind Silent

Most authors put pieces of truth in their fiction. Some stories grow from tiny moments of reality, and others combine a hundred of those tiny moments, add a dash of drama or fantasy, then mix them into a sort of truth-stew that becomes fiction when served.

Silent falls into that second category. As far as I know an exact replica of Alex isn’t walking the streets of Los Angeles, though he could be. Alex and all the other characters he meets along the way are a mixture of many Los Angelenos, of countless experiences, of things I’ve seen and people I’ve known. My other profession has taken me into the communities featured in Silent, and I was able to draw upon those memories when creating my cast of characters. Even those with the most fleeting of appearances on the page have their roots somewhere in this diverse city.

Of course, Alex in particular has a special place in my heart. His plot line may have started in my head as “just a story”, but it quickly took on a more personal meaning as I began writing through his eyes. I’ve witnessed many of the conflicts I included in Silent—neglect, abuse, poverty, gangs, and just generally growing up way too fast. And though I do what I can when and where I can, there’s always that underlying knowledge it won’t be enough to fix the parts of the world that are broken. I guess all any of us can really do is to try to mend the little pieces within reach.

So, though Silent wasn't written with the intent of a "message", it is a window into a world less seen in our country. It is a way for me to express a reality, even if the story is fiction. But it’s also not meant to make people sad. Alex can and does overcome his challenges, and so can many of those like him. If you ever have the chance, there are things you can do to lend a hand--volunteering, educating, a donation when possible. Even if it only touches one life, I promise it’s worth it.

Excerpt from Chapter 1

Other blog posts on Silent

True Colorz Featured Author Interview + Giveaway Opportunity

Setting the Scene: A Photo Walk with Alex -- Guest post on Madison Parker's blog

About Sara:

Sara Alva is a former small-town girl currently living in big-city LA with a husband, two cats, and an avocado tree. She recently discovered—after a year in her house—that she also has a fig tree in her backyard, which might mean she needs to get out more. But sometimes the stories waiting to be told demand more attention, and when she puts fingers to keyboard, it’s usually to write about journeys of self-discovery, heartache, personal growth, friendship and love. When she isn’t writing, she’s teaching or dancing. For more information, free short stories and news on upcoming releases, visit Sara’s website at

Connect with Sara: Website | Facebook | Twitter


  1. Thanks so much for this wonderful interview and insight into Sara and SILENT!

    1. Thank you, Tara! Sara is a wonderful author and it was a pleasure to have her here. Thanks for stopping by! It's always great to see you here!