Thursday, October 15, 2015

The Frailty of Things by Tamsen Schultz @goddessfish @tamsenschultz

An interview with best-selling author, Kit Forrester, 
the lead character of “The Frailty of Things”

Welcome Kit! What a treat it is to have you stop by today for this Q&A. Shall we begin? Where do you dream of traveling to and why?

After my life imploded when I was seventeen, I took off and spent several years in Europe, mostly Italy, and I still consider it my second home. Now that I’m with Garret (I’d call him my boyfriend, but there is nothing “boy-like” about him, believe me) we travel to Africa, particularly Rwanda, a lot. So given that I’ve hit several of the major continents, I think where I’d most like to go are places I haven’t been. I would love to travel the backwaters and bays of Vietnam (lazy days aboard a boat with Garret would NOT be a hardship). Or perhaps Buenos Aires or Montevideo—the sultriness that is associated with both those places is appealing. Then again, a spa week in Cuernavaca with my girlfriends sounds pretty appealing too.  

What do you think makes a good story?
As an author myself, I like to write stories that shine a spotlight on the little moments in life that seem inconsequential but are an essential part of (or become an essential part of) my characters. Little moments are often overlooked in the flash-bang world we live in but they can be just as beautiful or heartbreaking as those big banner-and-balloon moments.

As for what I read, my good friend Matty Brooks (writing as Hilde Brooks) writes all too engaging political thrillers that have kept me up well into the early morning hours. And my mentor, Marco Baresi, is always someone I read when I want to remind myself to stay humble—the way he uses words seduces a reader in an almost magical way, his gift is both awe inspiring and frightening in its beauty.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Until I was seventeen, I honestly assumed I would grow up, go to a good college, get married, and maybe have some sort of career, but mostly I would support my husband’s career and take care of the home. It all sounds very 1950s doesn’t it? Don’t get me wrong, a lot of couples live this way and it really works for them. My cynicism isn’t a judgment on this seemingly traditional view of marriage, but more a judgement of myself and how oblivious I was to what was really going on in my house. Once I realized who, and what, my father was, all thoughts of settling down to a familiar life—with the man as the head of the house (so to speak)—no longer held any appeal. After that, it took me a few years to figure out what I wanted to do and who I wanted to be. Marco Baresi helped tremendously with that, guiding me to questions I didn’t even know I should be asking. It wasn’t until I realized how writing really saved my soul—really helped piece me back together—that I decided it was something I needed in my life. Thankfully, readers seem to like what I share and so I’ve been able to live as a writer since my first book was published in my mid-twenties.

Do you play any sports?
No way. Despite looking athletic (I’m really tall), I do not have the slightest inclination to sports or physical activity (as a workout). I do have a gym in my house, but when I put it in I think it was more aspirational than realistic. Of course, Garret uses it now so maybe fate knew something I didn’t when I added it to the design plans all those years ago.

Morning Person? Or Night Person? How do you know?
I’m a whenever-inspiration-hits-me kind of person. Sometimes I’ll stay up until three in the morning writing or reading or catching up on some of my favorite TV shows. But other nights, I’ll be in bed by nine and up at four. I also have a tendency to wake up in the middle of the night with an idea and just get up and write—if I do that, I’ll often head back to bed mid-morning and sleep until early afternoon. We don’t have any kids so this kind of schedule is a bit of a luxury that not everyone has.

What would we find under your bed?

Hah, you’d have to ask Garret that. I try not to look under the bed too much. Last time I did though, there were several metal suitcase-looking things. I’m pretty sure they are gun safes but since they require his fingerprints to open them, and a security code, I can’t say for certain.

Do your friends think you are an introvert or an extravert? Why?

If you ask Vivi and Jesse, two of my good girlfriends, they will tell you I’m an extrovert. But Matty and I (I mentioned Matty Brooks above) are really only just less introverted than they are so to them, we both seem extroverted. I think in reality, I’m an extroverted introvert if that makes any sense? As to why I think this, I’m really not sure—given the events of my life, I think I was forced to really spend a lot of time thinking about my place in the world, what it was and what I wanted it to be. I suppose I could have gone the opposite way and just partied myself out until I did something really stupid, but when the chips were down, I drew in on myself. I guess, to me, that would make me think I was born an introvert, but maybe one with extrovert training.

You just won a huge lottery what is the first thing you'll buy?
Not to sound blasé, but money was never an issue for me. Granted, a lot of the money I grew up with turned out to be dirty money derived from some of the most heinous crimes imaginable, but I didn’t know that at the time. Of course, when I found out, I tried, as best I could, to set things to rights. I know I won’t ever be able to repair all the damage, but from the day I found out just where most of the family money was coming from, I didn’t touch a penny other than what I needed to put my plan in place. That said, my mother, who died when I was young and was never a part of the empire my father built, left both my brother and I a sizable trust—it’s what allowed me to take off for Europe right after high school and live there for several years before I started writing.

So why am I telling you all this? Because if I won the lottery, it would sound cliché to say I’d donate the money if you also didn’t have the background as to why I could, or would, do that. And it is what I would do. Garret and I are very involved in a few orphanages in Rwanda; if I won the lottery, we’d probably use the money to set up some kind of scholarship fund for the children or capital fund for the buildings. The people who run the program, and the kids living there, have helped Garret in ways that only he can speak to, but as his partner, I’m forever grateful that they have always welcomed him into their lives and routines. Money won’t pay for what they’ve done for him, but it will go a long way in helping ease the work they do.  

Is there a piece of advice that you have received that has really stuck with you? If so, what was it?
I don’t know if it’s advice since it’s not really something someone told me, but my life experience, and Garret’s, have drilled into us just how frail life can be—everything and everyone you know can be gone in an instant. It’s not something to be feared nor is it a reason to hide your heart away from people who love you, after all no one gets out of life alive, but it is a reality and what we do with that reality is up to us. As for Garret and I, we try (sometimes more successfully than others) to be grateful for what we have and to fight for what—at the end of the day—is important to us and that’s each other, our family, and our friends. 


The Frailty of Things
by Tamsen Schultz


Independence. Kit Forrester is a woman who wears her independence like armor. Despite keeping secrets and hiding her past, she’s built a life she loves and is accountable to no one. Until, that is, one of the world’s most wanted war criminals sets his sights on her and she must weigh the risk to one against the chance of justice and closure for many—a decision Kit couldn't make on her own even if she wanted to.

Certainty. As a man who makes his living in the shadows of governments and wars, certainty isn’t a part of Garret Cantona’s vocabulary, and he’s just fine with that. But when Kit walks into his life, he realizes he’s never before been so sure about anything or anyone. Suddenly, he finds he’s looking at the world, his world, in a different light. And now that he is, he’s determined to protect it, and her, in whatever ways he can.

Frailty. No one knows better than Kit and Garret that an appreciation for what is, or what was, or what might be, can be born from the uncertainty and fragility of life. But when a hunt for a killer leaves Garret no choice but to throw Kit back into her broken and damaged past, even his unshakable faith in what they have together might not be enough to keep it from shattering into a million pieces.


“We need to talk,” Caleb said. Kit didn’t respond for a moment. She and her brother didn’t talk. They never talked. Not anymore. There had been a time in their lives when that hadn’t been the case. There had been a time when she’d idolized her older brother, when he’d looked out for her, when they’d gone fishing together, and when she had believed that he had an answer for everything.

But that time had long ago passed, and they hadn’t been in each other’s presence for more than a few days a year for over a decade. Kit started to speak but stopped short when a second figure emerged from the passenger side of Caleb’s car.

She was glad her face was hidden in the shadows of her hat and scarf as Garret Cantona, her brother’s right-hand man, straightened to his full height. Kit was tall, easily five foot eleven, but Garret’s six-foot-three form dwarfed hers. Like Caleb, he wore jeans and work boots, but rather than a jacket, Garret sported a black sweater and a gray beanie. She knew the hat covered light-brown hair that, if it got too long, curled in ways that bothered him. And she felt, more than saw, his light-blue eyes—eyes rimmed with thick, black lashes—studying her.

“And I see you brought your Mini-Me,” she added, forcing her gaze from Garret back to her brother in time to see a look of irritation flicker across Caleb’s face.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Tamsen Schultz is the author of several romantic suspense novels and American Kin (a short story published in Line Zero Magazine). In addition to being a writer, she has a background in the field of international conflict resolution, has co-founded a non-profit, and currently works in corporate America. Like most lawyers, she spends a disproportionate amount of time thinking (and writing) about what it might be like to do something else. She lives in Northern California in a house full of males including her husband, two sons, four cats, a dog, and a gender-neutral, but well-stocked, wine rack.

Author Twitter: @tamsenschultz
Author Website:


Tamsen Schultz will be awarding a $30 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn host.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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