Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Redemption: Interview With MaryLu Tyndall

*Your hostess for this clash is Asst. Editor Michelle Massaro

Welcome back, I'm so glad you could join us. Today I'm interviewing MaryLu Tyndall, author of excerpt B: The Redemption. So grab your favorite snack, put up your feet, and visit awhile.

MaryLu Tyndall, a Christy Award finalist, and author of more than ten novels is known for her swashbuckling historical romances filled with deep spiritual themes. 

MaryLu dreamt of tall ships and swashbuckling pirates during her childhood years on Florida’s Atlantic Coast. Unfortunately, instead of pursuing that dream, she worked as a miserable, landlocked software engineer for fifteen years. Only by the grace and providence of God, did she decide to answer His call to write a Christian Pirate series. Today, while writing her eleventh novel, she manages a home, husband, and six kids while battling three cats who have decided that her keyboard is the best place to sleep!  She believes that without popcorn and chocolate, life would not be worth living, and her sole motivation is to bring others closer to God.

Michelle: MaryLu, I can already tell you're going to be lots of fun! What is it about "the high seas" that called you to write this story?

MaryLu: I've always been in love with the sea! I used to spend hours as a child sitting on the warm beaches of South Florida, dreaming of romantic tall ships and adventures at sea. There's something so mysterious, alluring, wild, and majestic about the sea. Though man has learned to float upon its waters, the sea remains an untameable frontier. The age of tall ships when man first began to cross the sea and discover new lands is such an exciting time. I knew if I ever wrote a novel, it would have to be, in part, set upon the sea.

Michelle: Your enthusiasm is contagious, MaryLu. =) Now, to focus on your story, a great many of us grew up with absent fathers or a parental break-up, and it's often a source of pain into adulthood. How did Charlisse manage to forgive and love her father despite his hurtful treatment of her?

MaryLu: Only by the strength and love of God can any of us truly forgive those who have hurt us, especially if that hurt has come from a parent or spouse. Charlisse had a glimpse into the broken man behind her father's vicious exterior, a man destroyed by what he thought was rejection, a man terribly wounded and desperate for love. So often, we judge others by what they do and say, and especially by the way they have hurt us, but we don't really see that on the inside they are miserable and suffering.  God is the only One who can show us a person's soul and then give us the ability to forgive and love that person, no matter what they've done.

Michelle: Edward lived a very harsh life, though he repented in the end. What do you think drove him to choose his violent path? How did he justify it to himself?

MaryLu: Edward believed a terrible lie. He believed that the one woman he loved, the woman he had married and who bore his only child, had left him because he didn't make enough money.  Consequently, he became angry and bitter and instead of seeking the truth or forgiveness, he decided to feed his rage by hurting all those around him. He turned toward the darkness and kept moving in the wrong direction until his soul was cauterized by evil and he had no conscience anymore. He believed that by hurting others, his own pain would grow numb, but he was only lying to himself.

Michelle: Do you know a real-life Charlisse who either extended undeserved grace or witnessed a last-moment salvation?

MaryLu: I don't know anyone who has witnessed a last-moment salvation, but I do have a friend who, much like Charlisse, has extended a hand of forgiveness and love to a father who abandoned the family for a younger woman, ruined her brother's and sister's lives, and forced her mother to work standing on her feet all day when she was old and ill.  When people tell me there is no God, I like to point them to my friend, because without God, we humans aren't capable of such grace and forgiveness!

Michelle: Amen to that. What's your favorite fan comment you've received for The Redemption?

MaryLu: I received a letter from a teenage girl telling me that The Redemption prompted her to start reading the Bible her parents had bought her, which eventually led her to give her life to Jesus. I love these type of letters! They always bring tears to my eyes and I'm always astounded that God can use my books to bring people to Him!

Michelle: Wow, you can't ask for anything better than that. So what's next? What should we keep an eye out for from you?

MaryLu: I have two books coming out this summer. A novella co-authored with Kim Vogel Sawyer, Ronie Kendig and Dineen Miller called Central Park Rendezvous and a full length novel called Veil of Pearls set in Charleston, SC in 1811 about a runaway slave from Barbados, who doesn't appear black, but who falls in love with the spoiled son of wealthy plantation owner and gets swept away in the glitz and glamor of Charleston society without anyone knowing her true identity!

Michelle: Ooh, fun. What a great list of authors. MaryLu, it was so fun getting to know you today. Do you have a question for our readers before we say goodbye?

MaryLu: Yes. What is your favorite all time book? And please give me three reasons why.

Michelle: You heard her, now it's your turn. Leave your answer in the comments, or ask the author a question, and you'll be entered into Friday's book drawing. Tweeting or sharing the link on facebook gives you even better odds so let us know if you do that. Thanks for stopping by!

17 comments:

Olivia Stocum Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

My favorite ALL TIME book is Northhanger Abby. It has a castle, mystery, and a super witty hero.

I shared a link on facebook.

Elaine Marie Cooper Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

MaryLu, what an awesome interview! And I can picture you as a little girl, sitting by the sea and dreaming. No wonder your first love is to write about the ocean!

I cannot wait to read "Redemption." What a complex, intriguing story.

I'd say one of my favorite all time books is "To Kill A Mockingbird." I love Atticus Finch"—he is kind, just, and such a loving father. I love Scout—confused, hungry for love, and curious about her world. And I love Boo Radley—a gentle soul, completely misunderstood by most of the community. Such a great story!

Thanks for the insightful interview, Michelle!

elainemariecooper(at)yahoo(dot)com

MaryLu Tyndall Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Well Olivia, you can't go wrong with a castle and a super-witty heroine, in my opinion! I've seen the movie but never read the book. IT sounds great!

Elaine, sounds like you enjoy deep and interesting and quirky characters! I believe characters really make the story. Setting and plot are important, but it's the characters that keep us coming back. Glad you enjoyed the interview. :-)

Gail Pallotta Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Hi Mary Lu,
Congratulations on your new book and all of your writing.
My all-time favorite book is An American Tragedy. Three of the reasons are: It shows the human condition so well. It clearly points out that we don't all start in the same place in life. It illustrates that our actions have consequences.

Michelle Massaro Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Good morning! My all-time favorite book is A Voice In The Wind by Francine Rivers. Reasons:

1) I feel like I'm living in the time shortly after Christ. Great setting.

2) Hadassah, the main character, makes me want to be a better Christian and makes me wish I knew her.

3) The story-arc spanning many years watches the sad progression of Julia, Hadassah's owner or mistress, from spoiled young girl to tortured, lost woman and really makes me open my eyes to the power of gradual veering off-course.

Can't wait to hear everyone else's favorites today. Thanks, MaryLu!

April W Gardner Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Hi Mary Lu! Hi Michelle!
I thoroughly enjoyed this interview. What an amazing story about that woman forgiving her father. Jesus, give me a heart like that!
My all time-favorite book is Behold the Dawn by K.M.Weiland.
1. Its setting--the Crusades
2. The super-dreamy (yet not cheesily so) knight hero. Yum!
3. The author's beautiful prose

MaryLu Tyndall Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Thank you Gail. Ah yes, An American Tragedy. So, you value stories with a moral.. stories that teach something important. I do too!

Michelle.. a Voice in the Wind is on my list of favorites too! I've read the series twice. (which I rarely do) What an awesome display of God's Redemptive power.

I've never heard of Behold the Dawn, April.. but it sounds like my kind of story!

Chaplain Debbie Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

I'm not here to enter into the contest. I just wanted to say that all of MaryLu's novels have brought me closer to God. She has a way of pulling you into her stories; as though you are actually there. I've lost a lot of sleep reading her novels; because I refuse to put them down. :)

MaryLu Tyndall Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Ah.. you're so sweet, Debbie! But I'm sorry about the missed sleep. ;-)

Gwendolyn Gage Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Hi MaryLu! My favorite books are 1) A Voice in the Wind, 2) Echo in the Darkness. I don't know that I have a third one that competes with them yet. What I love about AVITW is the challenge to serve God unto death, and I love the story of Marcus' redemption in EITD. Both books made me cry my eyes out!

I would love to read "The Redemption".

gwen[dot]gage[at]gmail[dot]com

MaryLu Tyndall Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

I adored both of those books too, Gwendolyn! Haddassah wasn't your usual heroine.. She became such a role model for me. Her story was so touching and the entire series brought me closer to God.

Renee Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

My favorite book of all time is a tie between Pride and Prejudice and Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. Both have strong heroines who have qualities I wish to emulate-such as bravery. Second, the relationships between all the characters are amazing. I for one love picturing Mary at the piano at that party singing her heart out with her little squeaky voice and her father coming and telling her to stop and "allow someone else the chance to show off." A father trying to protect his little girl when she is in fact one of the laughingstocks of the party. Two of his other daughters are the other laughingstocks, but that's another story. Third~sigh~the hero. Both stories have an amazing hero that you root for and sigh for. If you are like me, you cry when the hero and heroine finally get together and "share true love's kiss" to quote a fave movie of mine.
Also, I must say that I too have lost sleep reading your books Marylu because they are fabulous and have all the elements of my favorite books :) Please keep writing!
I posted to FB too ;) potosrose(@)gmail(dot)com

MaryLu Tyndall Wednesday, January 18, 2012  

Renee, sounds like we have similar tastes.. Price and Prejudice is on my list of favorites too. I just adore the language and the characters are simply delectable!
Ah ha! I know what movie you're talking about. Princess Bride. Such an awesome movie..
Thanks so much for your kind words!

Michelle Massaro Thursday, January 19, 2012  

Ah! I thought of Enchanted when she said "true love's kiss". But Princess Bride is one of my all-time favorite movies. My BFF and I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning during sleepovers giggling like crazy over "Mawwage. Mawwage is what bwings us togevwah." tee hee!

Sidney W. Frost Thursday, January 19, 2012  

I enjoyed the interview and I was so glad to hear about the reader who found the Lord after reading your book. That's what I hope to hear someday.

In response to your question about my favorite book I can't put my finger on one book. I've read so many over the years and they affected me in different ways. I went through a James Michener stage and I've read all of his. I collected Pulitzer Prize fiction and read most of those. The author that showed me I could write a Christian book about older characters was Jan Karon and so I would always include her books as favorites.

MaryLu Tyndall Thursday, January 19, 2012  

Ah, Michelle.. yes Enchanted of course! But I'm almost sure "true Love's kiss" was in Princess Bride as well. You did a great impression! made me laugh. LOL.

Thanks for dropping by, Sid! Yes James Michener is fabulous. My hubby really adores him and has read nearly all his books. Right now he's loving Vince Flynn's books. Have you read any of those? I've never read a Jan Karon book, but now you've got me intriqued.

Sidney W. Frost Thursday, January 19, 2012  

I haven't read Flynn's books, but I checked them on Amazon and they look like books I'd like. Some of Davis Bunn's books get into politics some and I enjoy those. I learned more about the 2008 financial meltdown from reading his Book of Dreams novel than from nonfiction books.

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