Friday, August 14, 2015

Blog Tour: Interview & Review of The Ones We Trust by Kimberly Belle

We are excited to welcome author Kimberly Belle today.  She joins us with an interview as she promotes her latest book,. The Ones We Trust.

Author:Kimberly Belle
Publisher: Mira
Date of publication: July 2015

When former DC journalist Abigail Wolff attempts to rehabilitate her career, she finds herself at the heart of a US army cover-up involving the death of a soldier in Afghanistan—with unspeakable emotional consequences for one family. As the story of what happened comes to light, Abigail will do anything to write it.
The more evidence she stumbles upon in the case, the fewer people it seems she can trust, including her own father, a retired army general. And she certainly never expected to fall in love with the slain soldier’s brother, Gabe, a bitter man struggling to hold his family together. The investigation eventually leads her to an impossible choice, one of unrelenting sacrifice to protect those she loves.

Beyond the buried truths and betrayals, questions of family loyalty and redemption, Abigail’s search is, most of all, a desperate grasp at carrying on and coping—and seeking hope in the impossible.

The Ones We Trust is a was kind of a confusing book for me.  I was expecting more of a political mystery than I actually got when I read it.  I did enjoy it, but I think that the synopsis was a little mis-leading.  At the heart of the story is the Armstrong family's quest to find to what really happened to their son/brother when he died in the war.  That is where Abigail comes in.  She is a former journalist who has the uncensored investigation packet dropped on her door step.  She tries to track down what really happened.

To be honest, I figured it out very early on, so I think that took away from the mystery for me.  I spent the book waiting for the characters to play catch up.  I did like watching the relationship between Gabe and Abigail grow as they learn to trust each other.  The ending wasn't neat and tidy, but I felt like that was a very realistic ending for their situation.  

The parts that I didn't like and felt like they were a little too convenient or coincidental was the story line about Maria.  I honestly think that distracted from the book for me and in the end didn't make much difference to the overall story.  

This is the first book I have read by this author.  I look forward to reading more of her writing in the future.

What inspired you to become a writer?

I’m not one of those writers who penned her first novel in crayon. Writing was something I’ve always loved in theory, but it felt like a pipe dream. Beyond the shaky economics of the profession, writing meant putting myself out there in ways that can be really, really uncomfortable. Writing a story and sending it out into the world is a humbling, unnerving, terrifying thing. Did I really want to roll over and show the world my underbelly? Did I dare?

It wasn’t so much inspiration as it was being faced with a major upheaval. In 2008, when the economy crashed, so did my job. By that time I was pushing forty, and I still hadn’t written that novel I’d always dreamed of writing. I saw it as a now-or-never moment. I could either go find another job, or I could go for it. I went for it, and now I can’t imagine doing anything else.

Where do you come up with the ideas for your books?

Everywhere! Sometimes it’s a character that starts whispering bits and pieces of her story in my head, and sometimes it’s a setting that speaks to me. I keep a notebook with me at all times so I can capture my ideas before they escape.

The Ones We Trust, for example, began with an idea for a person who’s done something dishonorable for (in his mind, at least) all the right reasons. When things are not as they seem, it’s incredibly easy to misjudge their behavior, to assume the worst of them, to react inappropriately because you don't understand. And even in the closest of relationships, trust is not a given, and we don’t give it infinitely. There’s a point where doubts start to surface and we draw a line in the sand, where we can no longer justify what we are experiencing with the belief that the other person is behaving with good intentions. This is the case with Abigail and her father. I wanted to explore how far they could stretch the father-daughter bond before it breaks.

What exciting projects are waiting in the wings?

My next book is an as-yet untitled story; here’s a quick blurb:

When Flight 23 crashes into a corn field, Iris Griffith is glued to the tv, and the constant news coverage of charred earth and smoking debris. She’s devastated for the families of those on board — one hundred and seventy-nine lives lost in an instant — and she grieves for people she never knew…until investigators show up at her front door and tell her she’s lost someone, too. Her husband Will was one of the victims. 

Only, Will was supposed to be at a conference in Florida. Why was he on a westbound plane? And why would he lie about his whereabouts? Iris goes on a desperate quest for answers, and her search leads to people and places she had no idea her husband ever knew existed.

And then the letters begin arriving, postmarked after the crash and written in her husband’s distinct scrawl, demanding she stop her search. Is Will still alive? Is this some kind of morbid joke? Iris is horrified—and in danger. The clues she uncovers show a man very different from the one she married, one whose past could make her the next victim.

Who is your favorite literary character and why?

That’s easy: Winnie the Pooh. Beyond his funny and wise Pooh-isms, Pooh was my son’s favorite, too, when he was young. The two of us read every story, watched every movie, sang every song, and I can’t think of Pooh without thinking of my son. He’s twenty-one now, but that scene when Christopher Robin outgrows Pooh still gets me every time.

Just for fun, if you could be any animal, what would it be and why?

I have a house full of dogs, but I would be a cat. A big, fat, lazy one that lies on the back of the couch all day, swinging its tail and waiting for someone to pet me.

Thank you for having me today! 

About Kimberly Belle

Kimberly Belle grew up in Eastern Tennessee, in a small town nestled in the foothills of the Appalachians. A graduate of Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia, Kimberly lived for over a decade in the Netherlands and has worked in marketing and fundraising for various nonprofits. She’s the author of two novels, THE LAST BREATH and THE ONES WE TRUST (August 2015). She divides her time between Atlanta and Amsterdam.

Keep up with Kimberly:

Purchase Links

Kimberly Belle’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Tuesday, July 28th: Books a la Mode – author guest post
Wednesday, July 29th: Life is Story
Thursday, July 30th: Sara’s Organized Chaos
Tuesday, August 4th: Mom’s Small Victories
Thursday, August 6th: Kritter’s Ramblings
Friday, August 7th: Romancing the Book – review & interview
Monday, August 10th: Books and Spoons
Monday, August 10th: Just One More Chapter
Tuesday, August 11th: Just One More Chapter – author guest post
Tuesday, August 11th: Jorie Loves a Story – author guest post
Wednesday, August 12th: Bibliotica
Friday, August 14th: From the TBR Pile – review and author Q&A
Monday, August 17th: Feminist Reflections
Wednesday, August 19th: Read Love Blog – author guest post
Thursday, August 20th: The World As I See It

1 comment:

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

Thanks for being a part of the tour!