Spotlight on New Books: The Opposite Of Trust by Rodger Carlyle

The Opposite Of Trust: A Cold War Novel Of Passion And Betrayal by Rodger Carlyle

Every night Ellen would sit on the rickety picnic table next to Wolf Lake, letting the aurora temporarily fill some empty spot. Some nights she could imagine her body converted to electrons dancing across the sky with the aurora taking her somewhere, anywhere but there. But there was where she had chosen to stay. Anywhere but there would be filled with the stares and whispers of everyone.

Around her the needle-shaped trees sparkled in the northern lights, the rounded snow-covered mountaintops glowing. Above clear dots of glowing stars and planets filled the sky. Even where the waving glow of the green, yellow and pink northern lights washed from mountaintop to mountaintop the brightest dots shown like ornaments.

A blast and blinding flash to her left jarred her from her stupor. The sound of an explosion rumbled through the mountains. The air around her compressed then roared on, flinging her hat into the trees. Her ears screamed in pain from the concussion. A fireball rolled from the far lakeshore onto the ice.

IT’S 1958 AND THE U.S. MCCARTHY WITCH HUNTS ARE DESTROYING lives, while in Russia, Stalinist hardliners are fighting Khrushchev’s reforms. Both countries are paranoid over the other’s nuclear threat.

A Russian bomber trying to deliver a threatening message to an American Air Force Base crashes on a remote Alaskan lake. The lone survivor, Major Anton Bidkov, has flown the mission to free his wife from a political gulag, even though he knows in his heart that she is already dead. Ellen, a self-exiled widow of a career U.S. intelligence officer, whose life was destroyed when he was denounced as a Communist sympathizer, rescues Anton. Realizing that both share similar stories, their common betrayal sparks a fire inside that each thought was forever gone.

Ellen and Anton’s impossible affair faces one major threat; each is a trained professional and patriot who together may have the key to stopping the deadly North Pacific air war between America and Russia. Is it worth risking what they have, to do what each knows is right? Do they owe their respective governments anything?

“The Opposite of Trust is not overcrowded with characters, and Carlyle does an admirable job of making them feel believable. Grigori Rasputin stands out with his maniacal reactions, while Chad Gritt is a classic war hero.” –The BookLife Prize, 2021

Available for purchase at Barnes & Noble, or at

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