Thursday, July 04, 2013

Interview with Cristiane Serruya author of Trust: Betrayed

What inspired you to become an author?
TRUST started in a very unexpected way. I had a horrible flu that kept me in bed for days. I felt so bad that I could not even read, then I decided to tell myself a story. The seed was planted. It was a story about people that are ridiculously wealthy and beautiful but, like anyone, are empty without love. Money helps, but it can’t buy you love. The thing grew up and I decided to give the writing a chance.
Do you write in different genres?
Oh, yes, I do.
I’ve started with the Romance genre, the TRUST TRILOGY. In November 2012, TRUST: A NEW BEGINNING was published, then came out TRUST: BETRAYED in April 2013 and TRUST: PANDORA’S BOX in in the oven for autumn 2013. The books are about Sophia, Ethan and Alistair. Three completely different persons who met each other. Each one of them leave beautiful - and sometimes dark - marks in the life of the others. 
I have worked in the Philosophical genre too, and have published THE MODERN MAN, a divagation about the evil banality of daily acts. It is a short story published in a bilingual book - Portuguese and English. I’ve written it in 1988, when I was in the Law School and received the highest grade and an award for it. It never left my mind and I decided it deserved to be published. Now, it's finalist in two categories on the Readers' Favorite Award.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
My book treads on the same subject of my Law School thesis, which was about violence against women and children. 
I have always felt that children and women are still very much abused and too many cases still go unpunished. And I’m talking about many types of abuse: verbal, psicological, physical and economical abuse, besides physical and sexual violence. 
On November 2010, 30 Seconds To Mars released a videoclip to one of their songs, called Hurricane, which I love by the way. It caused great controversy due to the strong and violent sexual content. When I read E.L.James’s so called books, I’d already written 800 pages of my trilogy. I stopped and rethought my whole story.
I’m a woman of my time and this subject is being talked about all around the world and not only by ELJames. 
The problem with James's books is that she uses the BDSM as an excuse to vomit her sexual fantasies and to transform the male leading character in an abuser, a criminal. And I'm not going to talk about the leading woman character.. That's enough propaganda. 
So, as a lawyer and a woman, I decided that I had to change a bit of dear Alistair’s and Ethan's characters to introduce in the literary world my thoughts about these subjects. 
In my opinion, men and women have yet to learn how to live and respect each other. Many people don’t know how to respect themselves and others or what morals and principles mean. For every act there is a correspondent counter-act. Sometimes, only a tragedy makes us see that too much freedom and too many pleasures only lead to disaster. 
We have to review a few of our so called rights and a few of our so called freedoms, or else we are going to lose a great deal of what we have achieved, not only as women but as human beings.

Is the book, characters, or any scenes based on a true life experience, someone you know, or events in your own life?
Yes, they are. I wouldn’t say that have that the male leading characters have a blueprint, but I can say that I have mixed in my cauldron a few personalities and came out with them. 
It's a secret , but the only one that is closer to a blueprint is Sophia. Also, there’s a lot of me in Sophia - and in Gabriela. For example: I could read when I was three years old and I was in Law School when I was fifteen. Also, I’m totally afraid of butterflies. 
Fortunately, I’m still married with my dear husband, but I had a friend who had experienced a very similar situation to Sophia and Gabriel's, her late first husband. 
Ethan is so like so many deranged and troubled people who infest our world today. He’s the fruit of horrible parents, who, one way or another, profoundly hurt their offspring because they are selfish, criminally negligent or perverted.
And Alistair, is as those so many abuse and betrayed men. This may come as a shock, but many men are abused by women and are harshly ruined in mind and soul.

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Well, I have a very ecletic taste in books. 
When I was young, I loved Barbara Cartland, Charlotte and Emile Brontë and all romances. As I grew, Kafka, Ionesco, Anouilh, Victor Hugo, George Orwell and many others made their way into my library. Also, the Greek classics and lots and lots of romance, besides a few Brazilian authors. I’m kind of obsessed about books, so I have a Kindle and the Kindle app on my iPad, iPhone and iMac, besides lots of physical books. I read in traffic, in the doctor’s waiting room and a few hours every day at home. Recently, I finished the Millennium  trilogy, by Stieg Larssen and loved it. I hope I have learned something from them, but I cannot say that I have just one author that influenced me. 
What book are you reading now?
I just finish reading Fernando Pessoa, The Book of Disquiet, Herman Merville, Bartleby, and a biography of Hannah Arendt. I've had no time for romances right now.
What books are in your to read pile?
  • Franz Kafka,The Metamorphosis, which I’ll have to reread for the course I’m taking in Brown University, called "The Fiction of Relationship". 
  • All the Rick Riordan's books, as my oldest daughter keeps telling me is the second best author in the whole world, because - LOL - she thinks I’m the best one. 
  • And the last releases of Gena Showalter and Kresley Cole.
Do you have to travel much to do research for your books?
I used my own experiences as lawyer and a traveller. I studied and lived in England, France, Italy and Switzerland, and, of course, Brazil. I have traveled a lot and I used these experiences to write my book. 
For sunsets, moon phases, weather, this kind of thing, it was ok to use the internet to have accurate information but for other, like wine, which I love by the way, I consulted an expert, because drinking wine is one thing but having an expertise is another. 
I cannot write about something I don’t know or just google or go to wikipedia and put them in my books. It's feels like forging things and cheating my readers, that are expecting to read reality in fiction. This is the one of the principles, in my opinion, of writing a good book, my readers can be sure that besides, of course, the created leading characters, everything in there is real, even some of the the real people I put the characters in contact, like the chef Michel Roux, from the restaurant Le Gavroche, in London.

Roxanne, I'd like to thank you for this interview and for helping me promote my books. Hearing from readers is very important to a writer. It always helps us to do a better job. So, I want to invite everybody to leave a message here or on my website "". I can also be reached on twitter @CrisSerruya or on my Fan Page TRUST TRILOGY.

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Mila Ramos

Trust: Betrayed
Trust Trilogy Book Two
Cristiane Serruya

Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance

ISBN: 1482586479 
ISBN13: 9781482586473

Number of pages: 551 pages
Word Count: 137.903

Cover Artist: Renata Fontanive

Book Description:

Alistair and Sophia have found each other. Their hearts are opening to love again and they are set to have their 'happily ever after'. Or so it seems. 

BETRAYED, the second installment of the Trust series, journeys back into the past to reveal their secrets and dark deeds. 

Sophia, the ravishing owner of Leibowitz Oil, is determined to have a relationship with Alistair, but a dark and terrible secret lurks beneath the surface she presents to the world. Will she be able to find peace within herself?

Alistair, a powerful banker, is in love with Sophia but has difficulties overcoming his guilt over his daughter's death and his BDSM proclivities. Certain that he doesn't deserve to be loved, he will do everything to push Sophia away, despite his love for her. Will he be able to find redemption? 

Ethan, a steel tycoon, no less haunted by his secrets and lies, is still in love with Sophia after their short lived relationship. He now lives in an alternate reality he has created, because the loss of Sophia is too unbearable to face. He will pay any price to have her. Will he have her back in his arms or will he overcome his loss and move on?

Sophia, Ethan and Alistair will need to overcome their guilt, fear and pain and learn to see themselves through forgiving eyes. 

Or will they succumb to their misery?

Trust : A New Beginning
Trust Trilogy Book One
Cristiane Serruya

Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance

ISBN 13: 978-1480236295

Number of pages: 464

Book Description:

They are beautiful. They are rich. They are strong willed and successful. They have everything, but love. And each one of them has a dark secret looming in their past.

Sophia is a 25 year old Brazilian widow. Intelligent and ravishing, she flees from her own country after a tragic incident. Hiding from everyone and everything, she remains alone, torn between the love for a dead man, the torment of living without part of her memory and the fear of moving on. 

Ethan is one of the most important tycoons in the steel industry. As the memory of an awful evening in his adolescence haunts him night and day, he keeps looking for an elusive woman whom he could love - and who would love him - as he never has in all his 35 years... Until he finds Sophia. 

Alistair is a 34 year old powerful banker, searching for one–night stands with women who will warm his bed. And that he can punish physically to abate his anger for his late wife's black deeds and his own guilt for being such a debauched man for so many years. Any woman will do, and he has many to choose from, as they all fall instantly for his manly, devilish charming ways.

In Europe, in the months after October 2009, their paths will cross and clash. Who will win the prize of love?

About the Author:

I live in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with my husband and two daughters. I'm a lawyer, who specializes in cases of sexual abuse and violence against children and women. I also have a Masters in Business Law and a BA in Fine Arts. 

I've always loved to read, write and listen to music. I lived and studied in England, France, Italy and Switzerland. Traveling is one of my passions - as is keeping fit and healthy. 

After twenty-two years of practicing law, I decided to give writing a go. And - amazingly - it was just the piece that was missing in my life.



1 comment:

Mariana Oliveira said...

Nice interview! I loved the first book. Cristiane really knows how to write a romance.