The Players in Esperanza

Hotel in Otavalo where Tess and Ian stay



Tess Livingston


She's a 33-year-old FBI agent who finds herself on a bus in Ecuadorian Andes, headed for Esperanza, a city she has never heard of. She has never been married, but is involved with her bureau partner, Dan Rodriguez.


Ian Ritter


42-year old professor of journalism as the University of Minnesota. He's also on the bus headed for Esperanza, but doesn't recall buying a ticket there, doesn't recall much of anything, in fact, before he boarded the bus.




The undisputed leader of the largest tribe of brujos in the world, which is about 60,000 strong. Her last physical life was in Spain, in the Middle Ages, when she was the daughter of a wealthy landowner who hated the man she loved. She died of a broken heart at a young age.




A shaper shifter, the last of his kind. Tess and Ian first meet him at the strange bus depot in the middle of the Andes, where he is a thin, hungry black lab named Nomad who befriends them. As a man, Wayra was born in 1199 and was bitten by a shape shifter when he was in his teens. He's the man with whom Dominica was in love, who was murdered by her father. For nearly a century in the afterlife, before Dominica turned against the forces of good, she and Wayra were partners. They still have a love/hate relationship.




Dominica's partner, a man she seized at the turn of the century when he worked in a Ford car factory. Ben helped Dominica build the brujo virtual city. They share a condo in the brujo downtown with the ghosts of several dogs, cats, and birds.


Manuel Ortega


A resident of Esperanza whom Tess and Ian first meet at the bus depot. He drives the Esperanza 13 bus and invites Nomad to ride with them into the city. Like everyone else in Esperanza, he is not what he seems to be.


Juanito Cardenas


The doorman at the hotel in the old town where Tess and Ian stay, a campesino. But like Manuel, he isn't what he appears to be.


Ed Granger


The manager of the hotel, an Aussie. He clearly understands the role that Tess and Ian will play in the liberation of Esperanza.


Sara Wells


A cultural anthropology professor at Berkeley who, in 1968, left the U.S. for Ecuador to investigate the rich mythology about Esperanza. She was never heard from again. But she is alive and well in Esperanza.


Lauren Livingston


Tess's 63-year-old mother, an emergency room nurse at a hospital in Key Largo. When Tess was in a coma from a gunshot wound that nearly killed her, Lauren moved her to Key Largo.


Maddie Livingston


Tess's 19-year-old niece, a computer geek and rebel, who lives with Lauren.


Louise Ritter


Ian's ex-wife, a control freak.


Luke Ritter


Ian's 22-year-old son.


Dan Rodriguez


A Cuban-American FBI agent, Tess's partner and ex-lover.


Vivian Ortiz


She started a blog about the mysterious deaths of people all over South America and correlated the circumstances and the material like a forensics pathologist. Her blog galvanized people throughout Ecuador to rebel against the brujo domination.

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"You get what you concentrate on...there is no other main rule." -Seth