Book Review & Author Interview - Trust: Betrayed by Cristiane Serruya

Title: Trust: Betrayed
Author: Cristiane Serruya
Series: Trust Trilogy #2
Publisher: CreateSpace
Published: April 19th, 2013
Page count: 556 pages
Format: e-book
Source: From the author in exchange for an honest review.

Book Summary:
In BETRAYED, the second installment of the Trust series, Sophia, Ethan and Alistair will face and revisit their past dark deeds. 

Each one of them will need to overcome their guilt, fear and pain and learn to see themselves through forgiving eyes. 
Or succumb to their misery.

Alistair Connor MacCraig, a powerful banker, and Ethan Ashford, a steel tycoon, are both in love with Sophia Leibowitz, the ravishing owner of Leibowitz Oil.

Sophia fells for Alistair's seduction. She is determined to have a relationship with him but a dark and terrible secret lurks beneath the surface she presents to the world. When she regains her memories, shame and fear will take control of her. Will she be able to find peace within herself?

Alistair is in love with Sophia but he has difficulties overcoming his guilty over his daughter's death and his sexual preferences. Certain that he doesn't deserve to be loved, he would do everything to push Sophia away, despite his love for her. Will he be able to find redemption? 

Ethan, no less haunted by his secrets and lies, lives in an alternate reality because the loss of Sophia is too unbearable to face. He would do everything to have Sophia back in his arms.

*The Reader's Review*

My rating: 4/5 stars!
Good gracious, this book sure is something. Betrayed has come a long way from the first book, Trust: A New Beginning. It starts right where it left off, confusing and bottled up with so many secrets I can't believe the author managed to keep them safe up until now. If I were the author, I would have let them all out from page one (yeah ... not good, right?). I had no idea what was happening as everything was going too fast with no hints whatsoever, so naturally, I was hooked.

In Betrayed, the characters really start to come out of the pages as they slowly peel layers of themselves and show their true forms. They are raw characters, broken and messed up, carrying a strong facade just to not appear weak. They are proud, but also filled with anger and a touch of craziness, making them sort of dangerous to the people they love. And yet, they are still beautiful, despite their many flaws. I loved their intellect and dominant personas, it often was an entertaining battle to see who had the final say in things. However, I sometimes did hate their masochistic ways.

The setup of this book is great. It feels comfortable as it changes smoothly from the present to past life events of the characters. Getting to know younger versions of Alistair, Ethan and Sofia helped a lot to understand how and why they act the way they do, what led them to turn out to be so damaged and incapable of trusting, to fall in love. It also made me change my mind about some things.

I liked that Betrayed is a gasp collector, there were many things that never crossed my mind until they did, and being surprised is one of the many things I love when reading a book. I'm excited to read the conclusion of this trilogy, I want to know more, I want to see what happens after that small happy ending of two of our characters, how long it lasts and what demons are going to be set lose to break havoc in their lives. I'm ready, bring it on.

P.S. Go Alistair! I like you even when you are mean. 

{  Author Interview  }

Hi Cristiane, welcome to The Reader and the Chef! Thank you so much for taking some time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions.

Thank you, Melissa. It’s a pleasure to be featured in your lovely blog. :)

~ First, why don't you tell us a bit about the Trust Trilogy? (for those who don't know about it)

The TRUST TRILOGY focuses on the lives of three characters who, on the outside, seem to have it all. They are wealthy, good-looking, intelligent and successful in their own fields. But they all have deep scars from terrible events that happened in their lives, sometimes ending with the death of a loved one. When they meet, in late 2009 and early 2010, their encounters will change their deepest certainties and alter their outlooks on life, as only love and trust can. 
The TRUST TRILOGY has just been finished last year: Trust#1, A New Beginning was first published in November 2012, and a new edition was released in February 2014; Betrayed was published in April 2013 and its last installment, Pandora’s Box is… coming out in today! 
Now, on May 27th, comes out the TRUST TRILOGY as a bundle.

*Whoot! Happy birthday to Pandora's Box!*

~ Did you always plan for a trilogy?

Oh, no! It was supposed to be a stand-alone book, but the story started to grow, the characters became demanding and rebellious, well I mean, they had a life of their own… Ah, no I’m not crazy… It’s just that… Well, to make it short, I had to cut the story of Sophia, Alistair and Ethan it in 3 pieces so they could fit in readable paperbacks.

~ Who is your favorite character to write about: Sophia, Ethan or Alistair?

Oh, God! How can a mother choose between her many children? I loved to write about all my characters, even the secondary ones. Even about the “bad”  guys. Although I hated them, I loved writing about Ethan’s parents. I laughed a lot imagining the ridiculous English mistakes Calista did and the boisterous and absurd way of talking of George. Oh. And the criminals… Ah, that was quite enjoyable. Really. 
But if I had to choose just one… Aw, just one, it would beGabriela! Gabriela is adorable!

*I love Gabriela too, she  is so lovely!*

~ If you could write more of any character from your books, dig deeper into his/her story, who would it be and why?

Surprise! I will! I will write the stories of Sophia’s siblings: Carolina, Felipe, Victoria and Valentina, but the one that deserves a whole trilogy all for himself is Tavish Uilleam. Oh, my God! That Highlander is an irresistible mystery in need of unwrapping!!

*YES! I was thinking about him, and of Felipe. I'm glad to hear this. :D*

~ Sophia is very fond of music and has an eclectic taste, which song do you think is her favorite? How about yours?

Well, Sophia and I are very much alike when it comes to music. Sometimes, we need calm or monumental classic music; in others, we need contemporary alternative rock, like Linkin Park, Imagine Dragons, 30 Seconds to Mars, Evanescence… It changes according our mood. :)
If I had to choose one song for Sophia, it would be Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol. If I had to choose one, just one song- Argh! Melissa, this is not fair! I have a whole list for the films… Err… When Hollywood calls me… I mean… :) No one has called me. Yet. 
Where I was? Ah! Yes, just one song: Demons by Imagine Dragons.

*Yay! All my favorite bands.*

~ What genre do you fear to write about but wish you could someday?

Young Adult, no doubt. I’d love to write a book for teenagers! Maybe one day.

*Sign me up for this one, I adore YA.*

~ Name one book you think is underrated.

Hmmm… I know about many that are overrated. rsrsrs Now, about one that is underrated… Can I skip this question? No? Okay. I think The Book of Disquiet by Fernando Pessoa is underrated. Although there are readers who rate it 5 stars, there are some that rate it 1 star. If I could I would rate it 10 gold stars.

~ What advice do you wish someone had told you in your earlier stages as an author?

Many. *Sigh* For example, get a lot of beta readers. Distribute your book to a few as soon as you think your manuscript is ready; It’s not. Leave others for the last step, preferably the ones that are good in grammar. And get a proofreader that did not edit your book, your editor already knows your story and it’s too difficult to catch a typo.

~ What can you say about the power of love and trust?

In two words: It heals.

~ How epic will Pandora's Box going to be?

Today is its publishing day and I’m dreading it. *biting bottom lip* I don’t think I as its author, could answer that question impartially, Melissa. I loved writing it and I think it is a great end to the trilogy, but really… I prefer to hear my readers say this. In fact, I’d love to hear my readers shout it out loud!

And, last question...

~ Chocolate Mousse or Lemon Soufflé?

Oh, my. Such a difficult decision, but… *licking lips* Mmm… Lemon Soufflé!

Thanks again, Cristiane! These were wonderful answers and I'm very excited for you, for Pandora's Box and your next projects.

Thank you, Melissa, for the opportunity to share my work and thoughts and for helping me promote my book. Hearing from readers is very important to me. It always helps me to do a better job. So, I want to invite everybody to leave a message here or on my website’m available to comment, or answer any questions.

                              About Cristiane Serruya:

Cristiane Serruya is the author of The Modern Man and the TRUST trilogy: A New Beginning; Betrayed; and Pandora’s Box (to be released in the end of March). She’s also a lawyer, and has worked with abused women and children. She also has a Masters in Business Law and a BA in Fine Arts. She lived and studied in England, France, Italy, Switzerland, and, of course, Brazil. Cristiane lives today in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with her husband and two daughters.
She has always loved to read, write and listen to music. After twenty-two years of practicing law, she decided to give writing a go. And - amazingly - it was just the piece that was missing in her life.

Find her online: Website | Facebook  | Trust Trilogy Fb Page | Goodreads | Pinterest | Youtube
Twitter: @CrisSerruya and @Trustrilogy

Go wish Cristiane and Pandora's Box a happy book birthday, and don't forget to add the Trust Trilogy on Goodreads if they sound right up your alley! ;)


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. The series sounds really good and Cistiane was so funny!