Kristi Belcamino is a writer, artist and photographer who makes a tasty biscotti. She grew up in a Northern California town called Paradise.
After graduating from Paradise High School she moved to L.A. where she received an associate of arts degree in business administration from Fullerton College and later, received a bachelor’s of arts in Journalism from California State University, Long Beach.
During those wild college years, she lived with four Australian Rugby players in a house a block from the beach. They loaned her a wetsuit and surfboard and attempted to teach her to surf, but gave up because she was too afraid of sharks. (Blame watching Jaws as a kid.)
During college she also lived in a Mara Salvatrucha gang neighborhood with the now-famous singer Beck and his family. (Hi T! Hi Bibbe and Sean!)
During college she had internships The San Gabriel Valley Tribune newspaper, EMI Records, and Rolling Stone Magazine where she got to hob nob with rock stars — or at least be in the same room as them, including the time Eddie Van Halen bumped into her spilled her drink, but he smiled at her and she forgave him.
After graduation, she and her boyfriend headed south and camped along the Baja California beaches in a flimsy orange tent for weeks on end. A few months later, they packed all their belongings in a hatch back and drove to Seattle to chase the grunge scene for a few months before reducing all those belongings to what would fit in a backpack and headed to Europe.
After tromping through Europe, Belcamino landed in her boyfriend’s home town of Minneapolis and began her first job in journalism working for the state medical journal and then getting hired as a reporter at a small newspaper in White Bear Lake.
Sick of Minnesota winters, she took a reporting job at the Carmel Pine Cone for a few months before getting her first big break at a daily, The Monterey Herald, where she started covering crime. Her highlights working in the Monterey Peninsula include getting to speak to Clint Eastwood, flying above Big Sur in an FA/18 fighter jet, racing a Dodge Viper at Laguna Seca, being sneered at by a crabby Jerry Seinfeld and having Hall-of-Famer Reggie Jackson ask to be introduced to her because he loved a story she wrote about a naked, masturbating, car-accident-causing driver.
Belcamino then moved to Oakland when she was hired as the police reporter at a larger daily, the Contra Costa Times. While there, she covered every horrific crime anyone could imagine, but the one that haunts her the most involved her efforts to find out what happened to a missing little girl by spending numerous hours interviewing a convicted kidnapper who told her tales of his exploits as a long-time serial killer.
Then, she had a baby. Within nine months, she and her husband had packed up and moved to Minnesota to be around his large Irish family. Within a year, she had another baby. When her youngest started kindergarten, Kristi started writing a novel inspired by her dealings with the serial killer. Within four months, she had her first draft. About a year later she signed with Stacey Glick at Dystel & Goderich Literary Management.
A year after that her first novel, Blessed are the Dead, based on her experiences as a crime reporter, sold to HarperCollins in a two-book deal.
Kristi lives in Minneapolis with her husband and her two fierce daughters.
BLESSED ARE THE DEAD pits Italian-American Bay Area Crime reporter against a serial killer who preys on children. When they were little girls, Gabriella Giovanni’s sister was kidnapped and killed. Twenty years later, Gabriella spends her days on the crime beat flitting in and out of other people’s nightmares and then walking away unscathed. That changes when a little girl disappears and Gabriella’s quest for justice and a front-page story leads her to a convicted kidnapper who reels her in with tales of his exploits as a longtime serial killer and promises to reveal his secrets to her alone. Meanwhile, Gabriella’s passion for her job quickly spirals into obsession when she begins to suspect the kidnapper also killed her sister. Gabriella won’t hesitate to risk her life to garner justice for the dead