Saturday Spotlight- Romina Garber

Posted August 9, 2020 by stuckint in Features, Saturday Spotlight / 0 Comments

Hello everyone. Today we are stoked to share our exclusive Q&A with Romina Garber about her debut Lobizona. It’s a novel full of werewolves, witches and a magic school. It can be purchased wherever books are sold or you can request the title from your library.

About the Book

Lobizona (Wolves of No World, #1) by Romina Garber, Romina Russell
on August 4, 2020

Some people ARE illegal.
Lobizonas do NOT exist.Both of these statements are false.
Manuela Azul has been crammed into an existence that feels too small for her. As an undocumented immigrant who's on the run from her father's Argentine crime-family, Manu is confined to a small apartment and a small life in Miami, Florida.
Until Manu's protective bubble is shattered.
Her surrogate grandmother is attacked, lifelong lies are exposed, and her mother is arrested by ICE. Without a home, without answers, and finally without shackles, Manu investigates the only clue she has about her past--a mysterious "Z" emblem—which leads her to a secret world buried within our own. A world connected to her dead father and his criminal past. A world straight out of Argentine folklore, where the seventh consecutive daughter is born a bruja and the seventh consecutive son is a lobizón, a werewolf. A world where her unusual eyes allow her to belong.
As Manu uncovers her own story and traces her real heritage all the way back to a cursed city in Argentina, she learns it's not just her U.S. residency that's illegal. . . .it's her entire existence.

About the Author

ROMINA GARBER (pen name Romina Russell) is a New York Times and international bestselling author. Originally from Argentina, she landed her first writing gig as a teen―a weekly column for the Miami Herald that was later nationally syndicated―and she hasn’t stopped writing since. Her books include Lobizona and the Zodiac quartet. When she’s not working on a novel, Romina can be found producing movie trailers, taking photographs, or daydreaming about buying a new drum set. She is a graduate of Harvard College and a Virgo to the core.


1-  Lobizona is steeped in Argentinian folklore, can you share the inspiration/mythology behind the novel?

Romina: The mythology of Lobizona is inspired by an Argentine law called ley de padrinazgo presidencial 20.843. It declares the President of Argentina godparent to the seventh consecutive son or daughter in a family. I was curious how and why this legislation came about, so I fell down the rabbit hole of online research, where I found a superstition about seventh children. It claims these kids are born cursed: Seventh daughters are brujas, and seventh sons are lobizones. Werewolves. 

2- Were there any scenes cut from the novel that you wish had made it into the final draft? 

Romina: There’s a scene I really loved that I cut for now because it wasn’t earned yet. It’s a special bonding moment between Manu and Javier, in which he shares with her his deepest secret. I still believe they will have this conversation, but it didn’t feel honest in the context of this first book. To be true to the character development, I had to hold off for now.

3- What is your favorite fantasy sub genre? Anything you would like to try your hand at writing some day? 

Romina: I’m a fan of epic fantasy, magical realism, fables, superhero tales. . . . I’d love to write a villain’s origin story someday.

4- There are quite a few characters with magical abilities and gifts in Lobizona. If you could have any magical ability what would it be and why? 

Romina: Does teleportation count as a magical ability? In the current climate, I would love to be able to visit my friends and family without having to travel!

5-Can you tell us anything about other projects you are working on? Any spoiler free hints about book 2?

Romina: I’m working on the sequel to Lobizona and a SFF short story for an awesome Latinx anthology called Reclaim the Stars. The sequel has been a thrill to write, particularly as it takes place in a supernatural version of Argentina. My favorite part has been crafting each new location, but I really shouldn’t say more. . . . 

6- What does your writing process look like? Do you figure things out as you go or do you plot things out? 

Romina: I’m a big-time plotter. It’s in my Virgo nature to rely on outlines and lists and charts to keep my thoughts organized. The first thing I do when starting a new project is worldbuild. I need to understand the context my characters are born into so that I can craft beings organic to the universe of the story. Once I’m familiar with the setting and the cast, I begin my outline.

7- Which authors inspire your writing the most? Anyone you would love to co-author a book with? Any genres you would love to try writing outside of fantasy?

Romina: When I was learning English in elementary school, the first time I truly heard the language was in Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends. It was that book that inspired me to begin writing poems and stories of my own, in both English and Spanish. 

In theory, there are tons of authors I’d love to co-author with; but in practice, I’m not sure I could write a book with someone else. Part of the appeal of being a novelist for me is the fact that I can create these stories in isolation, and later enjoy them in good company! Outside of fantasy, I think I want to tackle a contemporary mystery one day. 

8- Did you always want to be a writer? What are some of the books that shaped your love of reading?

Romina: I knew I wanted to be a writer the instant I heard Shel Silverstein’s stories, and the books that shaped my love of reading growing up were The Babysitters Club, Goosebumps, His Dark Materials, anything Judy Blume or Jorge Luis Borges. . . . 

9- Do you have any reading or writing quirks?

Romina: I don’t read novels when I’m deep into drafting. I worry too much about the stories getting mixed up in my head. Instead, I let my tbr stack pile up on my nightstand, and it becomes an incentive to finish writing so that I can reap the rewards and READ!

10- When you are not writing (or reading) what do you enjoy doing?

Romina: I love swimming, photography, hanging with friends, binging TV shows, bar trivia nights, yoga. . . .  

Rapid Fire Questions

1- Coffee or tea?

Romina: COFFEE!

2- Dogs or cats?

Romina: CATS!

3- Favorite place to read?

Romina: BED!

4- What types of books are in your reading wheelhouse?

Romina: YA!

5- What are some 2020/2021 releases you are excited about?


6- Lastly, where can our readers learn more about you and your book?


What About You?

Have you read Lobizona? Do you have questions for Romina? Let us know in the comments!

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