Friday, August 26, 2011

End of Summer Bash: Welcome MaryLu Tyndall!

MaryLu Tyndall is such a kind person who writes enthralling and romantic historical fiction! I'm blessed to be a part of her "Motley Crew" - a group that helps spread the word about her great books!

Her latest series, "Surrender to Destiny," is a winner, and you can read my reviews of each of these three books by clicking the following links:

Surrender the Heart, Surrender the Night, and Surrender the Dawn

Amber: Thank you so much for joining us today! Could you share with us one of your favorite memories from this past summer?

MaryLu: Whale watching off the California coast!!! It was my hubby’s anniversary gift to me. We spent two nights in a cute hotel by the beach, ate lots of good food, walked along the shore, and went out on a 4 hour whale watching cruise! We were so far from the coast, you couldn’t see a speck of land. We spotted two different types of whales, but my favorite part was the dolphins! A large group of them bow-rode our ship. They circled our bow and kept speed with us, leaping in the air. It was quite a thing to see!

Amber: That sounds like a memorable experience!

If you could choose one of the characters from your latest novel to join you for an “end-of-summer” party, who would you want to celebrate with in person and where would you go?

MaryLu: Good question. =) If I wasn’t married, I’d choose my hero, Luke Heaton, a ruggedly handsome reformed rogue. And I’d take him to a deserted island in the Caribbean where we could frolic in the waves and eat coconuts and cook fish over a fire. Um-hum, but, since I am happily married, I’d choose my heroine, Cassandra. She’s a spunky, independent red head who always speaks her mind. She would be the kind of friend who’s a lot of fun to be around and someone you could trust with your deepest secrets. We would go to an island spa for facials and mud baths and massages and lots of nighttime entertainment! Do you sense I love tropical islands?

Amber: Love your ideas! ;)

Please tell us more about your latest release. If you could share a scene from the book to whet our appetites, that would be fabulous!

MaryLu: Surrender the Dawn is a story of failure and fear, family and hope, love, faith, adventure, and patriotism. Set during the War of 1812, it takes place in Baltimore, a city Britain was intent on capturing. The heroine, Cassandra, desperate to find a way to support her family is forced to hire the town rogue as a privateer. Luke Heaton longs to rid himself of his past and prove to Cassandra and the entire town that he is not a failure, but he ends up being blackmailed by the British into selling supplies to them. Cassandra and Luke fall in love, yet Cassandra grows suspicious of Luke’s activities. When the entire British fleet heads toward Baltimore and begins to bombard Fort McHenry, Cassandra and Luke get caught up in the fighting as lives, liberty, and the future of a nation are at stake.

This scene takes place at the beginning of the book. Cassandra has just been to a town meeting where she was denied investing in a privateer simply because of her gender. On the way home, she is assaulted by three ruffians intending to rob her. Luke comes to the rescue and saves her. Afterward he walks her home:

~ Excerpt from Surrender the Dawn ~

“Allow me to escort you home.” Closing the distance between them once again, he proffered his elbow. His massive chest spanned her vision even as his body heat cloaked her in warmth. Her breath quickened.

“There is no need.” Turning, she waved him off. “I’m sure there are no more ruffians afoot.” Except you, perhaps.

Mr. Heaton fell in step beside her. “Nevertheless, I would never forgive myself should any harm come to you, especially carrying such a fortune.”

Shock halted her. “What did you say?”

One dark brow rose. “They wouldn’t accept your money, would they?”
Cassandra flattened her lips.

Mr. Heaton scratched the stubble on his chin. “I was aware of the proceedings at the coffee shop tonight, miss. I would have been there myself looking for investors if I’d thought anyone in town would take a chance on me as captain.” Sorrow weighed his voice.

Cassandra took in this news and allowed it to stir excitement within her. If only for a moment. But no. Even if he would take her money, Mr. Heaton was not a man to be trusted. She clutched her reticule closer and started on her way.

Clearing his throat, he walked beside her. “You have nothing to fear from me, Miss Channing. I am no thief. A gambler, perhaps, even a libertine, but no thief.” He stumbled, but quickly leveled his steps.

Cassandra shook her head. How on earth had he managed to wield his sword so skillfully in his condition? She stopped and faced him. “You are drunk, sir.”

“Ah, yes.” He gave her a rakish grin. “How could I forget? Apparently, I’m also a sot.”

Cassandra searched for a glimpse of his eyes in the darkness, but the shadows denied her. How could he joke about such a disgusting habit?

“Wondering how I managed to fend off three men?”

“Two.” She lifted her chin. “I took care of one of them.”

He chuckled and reached up as if to touch the loose strands of her hair.

She began walking again. “Please leave me be, Mr. Heaton. I thank you for your assistance. Good night.”

“You should see my swordplay when I’m sober, miss,” he shouted after her.

“I’d rather not see you at all, Mr. Heaton.”

She heard his footsteps behind her. Turning right onto Howard Street, she quickened her pace. Without the street lights—kept in darkness due to the war—she could barely make out the gravel road. The crunch of her shoes on the pebbles echoed against the brick warehouses on her right. One glance over her shoulder told her that Mr. Heaton still followed her, though he remained at a distance. If his reputation weren’t so besmirched, she might find his actions quite chivalrous. Instead, suspicion rankled her mind.

Down Eutaw Street, Cassandra halted before her small yard—the shadow of a two-story brick house loomed behind a garden of red roses and goldenrods. She swung about to say good night and nearly bumped into Mr. Heaton.

“Oh, forgive me, Miss Channing.” Yet he didn’t step back as propriety demanded. Turning, she headed up the stone path to the door.

“If you’re seeking a ship to invest in, Miss Channing, mine is quite available.” His boot steps followed her.

She faced him. “I am seeking a reputable ship, Mr. Heaton. With a reputable captain.” She feigned a smile. The lantern light perched outside her door reflected a devilish gleam in his eyes—blue eyes. She could see them now, mere inches from her own face. Her heart took up a traitorous thump. “Preferably a sober one.”

“I’ve been at sea my whole life. Sober or not, I’ll make a good captain and bring you a fortune in prizes. Ask your friend, Noah.”

“I have,” she said, lifting a brow. “He warned me to stay away from you.”

Mr. Heaton chuckled and tugged on his right earlobe. “He did, did he?” His eyes scoured over her as if assessing her for some nefarious purpose. “Good advice, I’d say.” A sad smile tugged on his lips. “Well then, I bid you good night, Miss Channing.” He bowed slightly and turned to leave.

Slipping inside her door, Cassandra closed and bolted it, then she leaned back against the sturdy wood. No matter if his was the last privateer in the city, she would never align herself with Mr. Luke Heaton.

~ End of Excerpt ~

Book Trailer:

Amber: What do you look forward to most about the coming autumn season?

MaryLu: Roaring fires in the fireplace, hot cocoa, fall leaves, pecan pie, and family.

Amber: Sounds great! Thank you for helping us celebrate the end of summer again, MaryLu!

Readers, MaryLu has generously agreed to give away a copy of Surrender the Dawn to one lucky winner! So leave a comment with your e-mail address to get your name in the drawing!

*This drawing is open to residents of the U.S. and Canada only.*

All winners this week will be announced tomorrow (Saturday, August 27th), so enter today!


Lisa said...

Would love to win a copy of your book!
bluejay (at) hwyman dot com

Kav said...

I've read Surrender the Night, I guess it's only right that I read Surrender the Dawn too. If Amber's review hadn't sold me, that excerpt sure did!


Linda said...

Enjoyed the interview, Amber! Would love to win this! Thank You!

Linda said...

Sorry, forgot to add my address:


Katie McCurdy said...

Amber, I already have Surrender the Dawn sitting in my tbr pile, so please don't include me in this giveaway. :-)

Hey MaryLu! Great interview. So excited to see you here! That excerpt has my curiosity ruffled. Wonder what happens to change her mind! :-) Can't wait to get into this book! :-D

Laura Frantz said...

Pls. don't enter me as I already own this wonderful book!! I just wanted to stop and say hi and tell readers you're in for a real treat! Luke is so memorable a hero who tugs at your heart - and the storyline doesn't let up for a single second:) So GREAT to see MaryLu here. I'm blessed to call her my friend.

Casey said...

*not an entry*

Wow, what fun to go whale watching! Sounds like a very memorable time for you MaryLu! :D

Julie Lessman said...

Oh, girlfriend -- that scene was SOOO good that I am DYING inside to read this third installment. What a GREAT series this is, and I'm with you -- Luke looks like (and sounds like) he could end up being my fav too because God knows I love bad boys!!! :)

Wish you were going to ACFW, sis, but there's always next year, right?? And don't make me come out there -- you WILL go, understood???


Marissa :) said...

I would love to win this book! I t looks so good! marissamehresman(at)aol(dot)com

Amber S. said...

So good to host you again, MaryLu! :) And I've had such fun being a part of your "Motley Crew"!!!

Hello to everyone else, as well! Thank you all for dropping in, sharing your thoughts, and/or entering the drawing! :)

All winners will be announced tomorrow!


MaryLu Tyndall said...

Hi Ladies! How nice to see all your comments. I appreciate you taking the time to read my interview! Thank you Linda, Lisa, and Melissa for your interest in winning!
Glad the excerpt got you interested, Katie! And thanks for reading Surrender the Night, Kav!
Casey, whalewatching was a blast! Especially being out on the ocean. But those dolphins were spectacular!
Waving at my friends, Laura and Julie! Actually more than friends.. two of my favorite authors! I've always loved Julie's writing.. hey you have a book coming out soon, sister! And I've only recently discovered Laura's work. You are both fabulous!!.
And I am planning on coming to ACFW next year.. but I'd love to see you come and drag me, anyway.

MaryLu Tyndall said...

Oh, and thank you Amber so much for having me here!!

Anonymous said...

Love MaryLu's books & would really love to win this one.


Michelle said...

I've enjoyed all of MaryLu's books that I've read. Would love to read this one too.

mchapman (at) windstream (dot) net

Anonymous said...

I have loved all of MaryLu's books and would love to win a copy of Surrender the Dawn.

chellb dot chellb at gmail dot com

BookWorm8900 said...

Great interview. Would love to read this book!!!


God Bless,
Liz R

karenk said...

a wonderful posting/interview, amber...thanks for the chance to read marylu's latest novel :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Faith Hope Cherrytea said...

wonderful intro ! thanks for sharing it with us ") blstef1 at mymts dot net

Patricia said...

Thanks for such an entertaining post. I can't wait to read this book.
By all means enter me in this giveaway!

plb1050 at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to let you know I received the book today. I am so excited to have won and can't wait to get started reading it. Thanks for the giveaway.

Michelle (Chellb)

Amber S. said...


Thanks so much for letting me know! Isn't MaryLu awesome? :) Hope you enjoy the book!