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Writer Daniel Alarcón on the strange, tragic story of 'The Contestant'




Beto Ortiz and Ruth Thalía Sayas Sánchez on El Valor de la Verdad.
Beto Ortiz and Ruth Thalía Sayas Sánchez on El Valor de la Verdad.
Luka Gonzalez/Archivolatino/Redux

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The game show "The Moment of Truth" dares contestants to reveal some of their deepest darkest secrets in exchange for big cash prizes. Here in the U.S., the program didn't fare too well, but it was a big deal when it came to Peru.

Their first contestant was a 19-year-old woman named Ruth Thalía Sayas Sánchez. What happened to her on the show changed her life forever.

It's a harrowing story Daniel Alarcón wrote about for the new publication California Sunday Magazine.

Alarcón is the author of "At Night We Walk in Circles," a finalist for the 2014 PEN/Faulkner Award, and the executive producer of Radio Ambulate.