Monday, August 11, 2008

Meet M. L. Tyndall - Interview & Book Giveaway

Today’s special guest is author M.L. (MaryLu) Tyndall. Not only is she a fabulous author, but she’s one of the nicest gals you’ll ever meet. Her latest novel, The Falcon and the Sparrow is available now from Barbour Publishing. Let’s meet MaryLu!


ML TyndallMaryLu Tyndall dreamt of pirates and sea-faring adventures during her childhood days on Florida’s Coast. She holds a degree in Math and worked as a software engineer for fifteen years before testing the waters as a writer. Her love of history and passion for story drew her to create her first trilogy, The Legacy of the King’s Pirates Series. MaryLu now writes full time and makes her home with her husband, six children, and four cats on California’s coast, where her imagination still surges with the sea. Her passion is to write page-turning, romantic adventures that not only entertain but expose Christians to their full potential in Christ. For more information on MaryLu and her upcoming releases, please visit her website at or her blog at


JA: Please tell us about your latest book, The Falcon and the Sparrow.
MLT: Hi Jen, thanks for having me! The Falcon and the Sparrow is a story of betrayal, intrigue, love, and loss. It follows the tale of a young girl who is being forced to spy on her homeland Britain or her only brother will be killed by Napoleon. In the process, Dominique falls in love with the Admiral she is spying on and struggles with her own insecurities and fears as well as God’s purpose for her life.

JA: Your heroine, Dominique Dawson, finds herself torn between loyalty to her homeland and the need to save her brother. Was there a certain “aha moment” that inspired this character?
MLT: The main inspiration for Dominique came from deep inside of me. Of all the heroines I have written about, Dominique is most like me: shy, insecure, and timid. I wanted to show that despite her weaknesses, God never left her, but instead He gave her the strength she needed to cope with a very harrowing situation that would terrify even the bravest of souls. I spent hours trying to come up with the most impossible situation I could think of to thrust Dominique into. And what could be more gut-wrenching than being forced to choose between saving the life of your only brother or betraying someone else you love dearly, along with your own country? I know. I’m very mean to my characters!

ML Tyndall CoverJA: Set during the resurgence of Napoleon, this story takes us to France and Britain. How much research was necessary to nail the historical facts?
MLT: If a location and time period are new to me, I usually spend a couple of months doing research. Ultimately, it would be best to travel to the location, but in this case, and much to my disappointment, I didn’t have the time or money. So, I rely heavily on good old research books from the library, on internet sites and articles, and, in this case, on friends who are also expert historians.

JA: What do you hope people take away after reading The Falcon and the Sparrow?
MLT: My main goal was to show that no matter if you’re the type of person who’s always scared, or shy, or who thinks poorly of yourself, or maybe you’re the type of person who believes you can’t possibly make a difference for God, if you rely on Him, if you follow Him with all your heart, He will be your strength, and He will use you in powerful ways you never dreamed of.

JA: What’s next for you in the writing arena?
MLT: I am working on a 3 book series entitled Charles Towne Belles about three sisters living in Charleston, South Carolina in 1718. The first book, The Red Siren, is about a lady who becomes a pirate by night in order to acquire enough wealth to protect her sisters from unwanted marriages. It will release in February 2009.

JA: On your website, you say “I am now living the adventure I had always sought.” I found that a moving and insightful statement. Would you care to share what it means to you?
MLT: I spent most of my life searching for meaning. I grew up in a broken home and wanted nothing to do with God, but I knew something was wrong with the world. I knew deep down there had to be something more than the menial existence and the heartache I saw all around me. Of course I believed the lie Satan told me and still tells people that if I followed God, I would be bored and live a restricted life. When I had exhausted all other means of finding purpose and adventure, I finally turned to God. Or I should say, He found me wallowing in the dark deep pit I had dug for myself and pulled me out! Since then, I’ve experienced things other people only dream about. But the key is to Love God, to Fear Him, to follow Him with all your heart, soul, mind, body and strength.

JA: Who are some of your favorite authors?
MLT: Linda Chaikin, Francine Rivers, Rafael Sabatini, Jane Austen

JA: Is there something people would be surprised to know about you?
MLT: I had six different fathers growing up and I’ve only met my real Dad once.

JA: Last but not least, how can people keep up with your latest publishing news?
MLT: Visit my website at or my blog at and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter.

Thanks for taking time to share your heart and your talents with us, MaryLu. May God continue to bless your writing journey!


Normally, I wouldn't pick up a book set during the Napoleonic conflict. It's just not a time in history that appeals to me. Having said that, I am so glad I had the opportunity to read The Falcon and the Sparrow. The writing is crisp and tight, sweeping the reader along as Dominique encounters one harrowing situation after another. Her struggle between her desire to save her brother’s life and her disgust at betraying not only her country, but the family she has come to love, keeps her in a constant state of unbalance. But through it all, Dominique clings to her faith and to God, who is always with her, even when she doesn’t feel His presence.

Tyndall creates multi-faceted characters that demand your attention. Aside from six-year-old William, who is a pretty straight-forward child, no one is as they appear to be on first glance. It’s a real pleasure to discover the shades and nuances of each personality.

The fast moving plot picks up greater speed at the end. After some unexpected twists and turns, the resolution is both satisfying and enjoyable. Bravo to MaryLu Tyndall!


If you’d like to be entered to win a copy of The Falcon and the Sparrow just leave a reply to this blog. I’ll pick a winner at random on August 18th. Please leave an email address so I can contact you if you're the winner. (To prevent spammers from trolling for your email, please use this format with the brackets--you [at] yourmail [dot] com--or something similar.) Good luck!



ladystorm said...

I love M.L. Tyndall's books, please enter me in the contest.


ladystorm282001 at yahoo dot com

Julie Lessman said...

Wonderful interview, Jen and Mary Lu! I am dying to read this one!! Please enter me in this contest.

gsus at charter dot net

Anonymous said...

Great interview! MaryLu's one of the best authors I've read. Please enter me in the drawing!

Deborah Piccurelli

windycindy said...

Hello, She is a wonderful author! What a difficult situation the heroine has in this book. Please enter me in your drawing. Many thanks, Cindi

sarah said...

Nice interview. mary lu, i LOVE your books. please enter me in the contest.
sarahwoll at hotmail dot com

bookwurm70 said...

Love the time period this is set in. How cool that a Christian writer is writing about this period! Please enter me.

bookwurm70 [at] yahoo [dot] com

Lindsey said...

I'm so looking forward to reading this one - please enter me in the drawing!

Thank you!

ladyufshalott at yahoo dot com

Smilingsal said...

Please consider my name for the drawing.

Blissful said...

Looks great! Thanks so much, and congratulations on your book!

tetewa said...

Please include me in the draw, I enjoyed the interview!

Becky C. said...

Sounds like a very interesting book.

Please enter me in the contest!

Thank you,

Becky C.

Mary said...

Loved the interview! I am hearing rave reviews and can't wait to read The Falcon and The Sparrow, please include my name! Thanks.


Anonymous said...

Interviews with good authors are always a pleasure to read. I first saw this book in a CBD magazine and thought it looked like a good book.

chellegrl824 at gmail dot com

MaryLu Tyndall said...

Hi everyone! M.L. Tyndall here, AKA MaryLu.. Just dropping in to say Wow, thanks for all the interest in my new book, and for all the wonderful comments! And thanks to Jen again for having me on her blog.
Many Blessings to each one of you!

Pamela J said...

I've never read a M.L. Tyndall book. Sounds like this one is just written for me! Since I'm sometimes scared or shy, may think poorly of myself about some things and wonder if I can possibly make a difference for God. I'm glad the book includes that if I rely on Him and follow Him with all my heart, He will be my strength, and He will use me in powerful ways I never dreamed of. It will be a good lesson for anyone who reads the book to know these things. It's going to be a great book. Please enter me in your drawing. Thanks.
Pam W
cepjwms at yahoo dot com

Maureen said...

The story sounds like one that I would enjoy. Thanks for the interview.

Bonnie Leon said...

Great Book Trailer. Sounds like an exciting adventure. I'm hooked. Hope I win.



Cheryl said...

I have wanted to read this book. Please enter me in the drawing. My email address is shryackmom[@]charter[.]net

Patty said...

Sounds like a wonderful story. I haven't had the pleasure of reading one of her books so I would be elated to win.


Doreen said...

Sounds like a wonderful read to me!! :) purposedrivenlife4you(at)gmail(dot)com

Sara said...

This looks very interesting . . I used to read books like this all the time but had slacked off because I don't have a lot of money for new books and the small library I go to doesn't get in many new christian books . . .

artist4christ -at- cyberhaus -dot- us

Jennifer AlLee said...

Great to see all you ladies here! Yes, this is a great book. Don't let the time period scare you off... not only is it full of wonderful historical information, but it's a fun read. Well worth your time.

cathikin said...

A really good interview. I would never have guessed that MaryLu had such a difficult life growing up. And I would never have thought of her as being shy or timid. Obviously, the Lord is working through her!

Carolynn W. said...

Please enter me, I love MaryLou's books. Can't wait to read this one too!