HITCHHIKER by Vincent Zandri
HITCHHIKER by Vincent Zandri
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The Big Thrill Discusses HITCHHIKER with Vincent Zandri

Book Cover: HITCHHIKERHave You Ever Wondered What It Would Be Like to Return to a Time When You Were Your Happiest, and Where Nothing Could Kill You?

A middle-aged woman and once promising fiction writer who now finds herself a widow and an empty-nester, decides to embark on “a road-trip to nowhere.” The man she repeatedly runs into…a hitchhiker…will change her world forever and cause her to question the nature of her existence on earth. New psychological suspense inspired by The Twilight Zone from New York Times bestselling Thriller Award winning author, Vincent Zandri.

Vincent Zandri stopped by The Big Thrill to discuss his latest contemporary thriller, HITCHHIKER.

Author Photo: Vincent Zandri

Vincent Zandri

Can you pinpoint a moment or incident that sparked the idea for this book?

The Twilight Zone was the original inspiration for this short thriller or novella (86-pages). For some reason I always intend to write a real short story of maybe twenty pages, and it always balloons into at least novella or short thriller length. I had no idea what I was going to write until I wrote it. The ending surprised even me.

Were there any particular books, movies, or songs that were knocking around in your head while you were writing this one?

It didn’t happen when I started the story, but as I kept going over the course of a week or so, I started hearing all those tunes I loved from the mid 1980s when I was in college and freer than I’d ever been in my life. REM, The Ramones, The Chameleons…they were bands I listened to all the time. I thought, what if you could go back in time and see yourself as you were. What if you could actually meet the young you? How would you do that? I can’t answer the question because that would be a spoiler.

When you first created your protagonist for this book, did you see an empty space in crime lit that you wanted to fill? What can you share about the inspiration for that character?

This is a female protagonist/narrator, strong female character-driven book. I’m as much interested in women’s POVs as I am men. I’m aware I’m mostly known for my more masculine hard-boiled fiction, but some of my most bestselling titles (titles that have sold well over 100,000 units) are female driven. I wanted to write a book that was mysterious and suspenseful, and yet somehow out of this world.


Vincent Zandri is the New York Times and the USA Today bestselling ITW Thriller and PWA Shamus Award winning author of more than crime 170 novels and novellas including the Dick Moonlight PI series. Called one of the most “prolific” writers of his generation, Zandri is a freelance journalist and the host of the Writer’s Life Podcast on YouTube.

To learn more about the author, please visit his website.