WIL MARA VISITS SAVURBKS

Welcome

PLEASE WELCOME WIL MARA TO SAVURBKS!

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WIL MARA’S BIOGRAPHY:

Biography

Wil Mara has been writing books since 1988. He started with a manuscript about herpetology (a childhood hobby), which led to a job as an editor with TFH Publications, aka, ‘The World’s Largest Publisher of Animal Books.’ In the mid ‘90s, he left TFH to work for Harcourt-Brace, at which time he began his first foray into fiction, ghostwriting a title for Albert Whitman and Company’s popular ‘Boxcar Children Mysteries.’ By the time he did his fifth ‘Boxcar’ in 1999, he was also editing for textbook publisher Prentice Hall and writing extensively for the school-library market.

His first novel for adults, Wave, was released in 2005. The flagship title in a series of disaster thrillers, it chronicled a small island community’s reaction to the news that a tsunami would strike its shores in less than two hours. Wave sold through its first printing in a matter of weeks, went on to win the New Jersey Notable Book Award, and was picked up in both paperback and eBook by Macmillan Publishing.

Wil’s second disaster thriller, The Gemini Virus, was released by Macmillan in October of 2012, in hardcover, eBook, and audio. Gemini tells the chilling story of a supervirus that begins in the industrial Northeast and spreads rapidly through the rest of the world. It received excellent reviews from critics and consumers alike, stayed on Amazon’s list of ‘Top 20 Best New Medical Thrillers’ for fourteen straight weeks, and was picked up for overseas distribution within a month of its initial publication. The mass-market paperback came out the following August.

In July of 2013, Wil’s first novel featuring Jason Hammond, Frame 232, was released. Examining the possiblity of a final, decisive piece of evidence to the Kennedy assassination being discovered in modern times, the book immediately earned scores of excellent reviews, reached the # 1 spot in its category on Amazon.com, and was nominated for the 2013 Lime Award for Excellence in Fiction. The second book in the Hammond series, The Nevada Testament, is scheduled for release in the second half of 2014.

Wil has four other Hammond titles in development, as well as one standalone story due for publication in 2015. His disaster series will also continue with a new story, Fallout, that same year

AN INTERVIEW WITH WIL MARA:

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What are the challenges of writing a contemporary novel that delves into the mysteries of the past?

The greatest challenge for me was to make certain I didn’t violate any of the established facts. One of the aims of the Jason Hammond series (Jason is the recurring hero in all these books) is to fill in the gaps with entertaining-but-still-plausible fiction. Sounds easy enough, right? Not necessarily—you have to first make certain you know all the little details that have already rooted. None of the Hammond books attempts to rewrite history—I extrapolate reasonable possibilities from the truths that exist, then endeavor to write an entertaining story. And if a reader learns a thing or two along the way, all the better.

How did you select the JFK assassination as a central topic to Frame 232?

I’ve been fascinated by the assassination all my life—and even if I wasn’t, I couldn’t escape it because it has loomed over my generation with a long and foreboding shadow. The story itself came together in a matter of seconds after I heard about a mysterious figure called the ‘Babushka Lady.’ This lone woman was wearing a head scarf (i.e., a babushka) and standing about thirty feet from the president’s limousine when he was struck. Most assassination researchers believe she also had a camera in hand, quite possibly an 8mm that took motion pictures rather than stills. And yet, we’ve never seen the images she captured, and her identity has yet to be determined. That got me thinking, “What if she caught something that no one else noticed…and then her film turned up now and altered all that we thought we knew about the assassination?” I figured that was a pretty interesting premise, so I followed up on it.

What are your literary influences?

They are many and varied. Everything from the classics—Shakespeare, Flaubert, Chekov, Austen—to modern commercial fiction—King, Grisham, Koontz, etc. I don’t like to pigeonhole myself as a reader, and I don’t harbor that snobbish, literary hardening-of-the-arteries attitude, either. I’ll give almost anything a try, and if I find it intriguing and enjoyable, I’ll see it through to the end. If I had to pick a favorite writer overall, it would probably be Steinbeck; even his ‘lesser’ works are brilliant. But my favorite novel of all is still To Kill a Mockingbird. I would place that above even Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer in terms of American relevance, certainly in the latter half the 20th century. But please don’t interpret that as a knock against Samuel Clemens, aka Mark Twain. Everything that flowed from the end of his quill was magnificent.

What are tips for keeping a reader engaged, yet not overwhelmed, by too much suspense?

Keep things happening and keep them fresh. Spend time fleshing out your players and make them real people rather than ‘novel characters.’ You don’t have to have a James Bond-esque action scene every five pages, but you do have to demonstrate to the reader that the story has substance and is steadily growing and evolving. And when you reach the last quarter of the book, you better be sledding down the hill at full speed. When the hero is about to lower the boom on the bad guys, don’t have him stop at the convenience store for a bottle of Coke. Bad idea, that.

A NOVEL ON THE JFK ASSASSINATION:

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The time had come, she decided, to rid herself of this burden, to take the steps necessary to put the matter to rest once and for all. And the first, she knew—against every instinct and desire—was to watch that film….

FACT — Only a handful of people who were standing in Dealey Plaza on the day JFK was assassinated remain unidentified.

FACT — One of them, a woman wearing a head scarf who has since become known as the ‘Babushka Lady,’ was no more than thirty feet from the presdient’s limousine when he was struck.

FACT — Many assassination experts believe she not only had a camera, but a video camera, and thus probably shot the clearest and most detailed moving images of the horror that unfolded. However, her film has never seen the light of day.

WHAT IF — This film surfaced now…and showed something that no one except the elusive ‘Babushka Lady’ has ever seen…something that radically altered everything we thought we knew about the assassination…and became a dire threat to a few very powerful people…people who would stop at nothing to keep the truth concealed….

During the reading of her mother’s will, Sheila Baker discovers that she has inherited everything her parents ever possessed, including their secrets. A mysterious safe-deposit box key leads her to the answer to one of history’s greatest questions—Who killed John F. Kennedy? Not only does she have the missing film that exposes her late mother as the infamous ‘Babushka Lady,’—she has incontrovertible proof that there was more than one shooter.

On the run from people who will stop at nothing to keep their secrets buried, Sheila turns to billionaire sleuth Jason Hammond for help. Having lost his own family in a tragic plane crash, Jason knows a thing or two about running from the past. With a target on their backs and time running out, can Jason finally uncover the truth behind the crime that shook a generation—or will he and Sheila become its final victims?

Ten years in the making, Frame 232 is the new suspense novel from critically acclaimed, award-winning author Wil Mara, and the first in a new series featuring pivotal character Jason Hammond. It was released on July 1st from Tyndale House in eBook, hardcover, paperback, and large-print editions.

INTRIGUIED?

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http://www.wilmara.com/eshop.html

INTERESTED IN LEARNING MORE? VISIT WIL MARA AT:

HOME

http://www.wilmara.com/index.html

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

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LORENA MCCOURTNEY VISITS SAVURBKS

Welcome
PLEASE WELCOME LORENA MCCOURTNEY TO SAVURBKS!
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MEET LORENA MCCOURTNEY
Biography

Lorena McCourtney started out with a degree in agriculture and the intention of writing non-fiction on agricultural subjects. But, as with many plans, life went in a different direction, and her writing turned into a career in fiction. She first wrote numerous children’s stories, then short stories for women. Romance novels followed, then a switch to Christian romances, and now she feels she’s found her real home in Christian romantic suspense.
Lorena and her husband live in southern Oregon, where their only livestock now is one eccentric cat.

Q&A WITH LORENA MCCOURTNEY:

Q&A

How did you create your character Ivy Malone?

Ivy is an older woman who is dismayed to realize she seems to have aged into invisibility. This came out of my own personal experiences with getting older and turning invisible, so Ivy is really a part of me with some differences and additions to make her a full-blown character. She’s more adventurous than I am – I wouldn’t, for example, want to spend the night alone in a cemetery as she did! She’s more outgoing. She’s tossed into becoming a sleuth because of circumstances in her life and quickly realizes that “invisibility” can be a handy asset. I didn’t fully create her before I started writing, and other facets of her personality simply pop up along the way. Ivy, I discovered, is not an arts-and-crafts sort of person. Neither is she a great gardener. Some writers develop a character fully before they ever start writing, but mine kind of grow along the way.

What is your process for writing a mystery?

Idea comes first, of course. I think of any story – mystery or otherwise – as kind of a circle, with the necessary elements of a story spaced around it. These necessary elements are plot, characters, setting, theme, and title. An idea may enter at any point on that circle. The Ivy books started with the idea of the character of Ivy. The Julesburg Mysteries started with a plot point – what if a woman is accused of murder and isn’t sure if she did it or not? The idea for the Andi McConnell Mysteries started when I saw the huge trunk of a limousine at a car show and thought – hey, wouldn’t that be a great place to stuff a dead body? I’ve done a couple of books where a title popped into my head and I wrote a story to fit it. (I do like to have a title early on, as it seems to give me a sense of direction, but it may be one of those well-known exercises in futility, because someone at the publishing house usually comes along and changes it.) And setting – well, I simply wanted to set a story in the Grand Canyon, where we took a great raft trip, and so I thought of a story that fit that setting. Which resulted in a romance titled “Canyon.”

Where/ how do you come up with your story lines?

I probably answered that in my answer to “what is your process for writing a mystery?” but I might add that I think of plot in a fairly simple way. A mystery starts at Point A, commission of the crime, usually murder (called the “inciting incident” in some teachings on writing) , and ends at Point B, the apprehension of the killer. So it’s a matter of getting from point A to point B in the most interesting and tension building way possible, with a final climax scene of danger and revelation.

How do you create realistic humor in your novels?

I’m really not sure. My main characters often have a wry or quirky sense of humor and so they simply see the world from that viewpoint. Since my stories currently as usually classified as “cozies,” I go for a lighthearted view of life, including crime, rather than the dark side. Circumstances simply seem to pop up that have a humorous twist. I don’t deliberately try to manufacture them.

ARE YOU DYING TO READ A GOOD MYSTERY?

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Cate Kinkaid is just dipping her toe into the world of private investigating until one of the many résumés she has floating around lands her a real job. All she has to do is determine that a particular woman lives at a particular address. Simple, right? When the big and brooding house happens to contain a dead body, this routine Pi job turns out to be anything but simple. Is Cate in over her head?

READY TO READ?
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AMAZON: http://www.amazon.com/Dying-Read-Novel-Kinkaid-Files-Book/dp/0800721586
BARNES AND NOBLE: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dying-to-read-lorena-mccourtney/1106874146?ean=9781441238221

WANT TO LEARN MORE? VISIT LORENA MCCOURTNEY AT:

HOME

http://www.lorenamccourtney.com

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?
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TRACIE PETERSON VISITS SAVURBKS

Welcome

PLEASE WELCOME TRACIE PETERSON TO SAVURBKS!

Tracie Peterson

MEET TRACIE PETERSON:

Biography

Tracie Peterson is an award-winning, best-selling author of over 95 books. Having given her heart to Jesus at the young age of six, Tracie has always felt called to some form of ministry, and writing fulfills that mission field.

Tracie received her first book contract in November, 1992 and saw A Place To Belong published in February 1993 with Barbour Publishings’ Heartsong Presents. She wrote exclusively with Heartsong for the next two years, receiving their readership’s vote for Favorite Author of the Year for three years in a row.

In December, 1995 she signed a contract with Bethany House Publishers. Tracie now writes exclusively for Bethany House Publishers. She has co-written with a variety of authors including Judith Pella, Judith Miller, James Scott Bell and her daughter Jennifer.

Throughout her writing career Tracie has found time to speak at writer’s conferences where she has a special heart for new authors. She is often joined by her husband Jim, whose background in history offers new authors insight into research. Besides teaching at conferences, Tracie also at one time managed Barbour Publishing’s Heartsong Presents book line – overseeing the production of 52 books a year. Tracie teaches at women’s conferences around the country and shares her testimony and insight for Christian living through the eyes of an author passionately in love with her Heavenly Father.

Tracie was awarded the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award for 2007 Inspirational Fiction and the 2011 Lifetime Achievement Award from American Christian Fiction Writers. Her books have won numerous awards for favorite books in a variety of contests, including USA “Best Books 2011” Awards, best Religious Fiction for Embers of Love!.

Making her home in Montana, this Kansas native enjoys spending time with family–especially her three grandchildren–Rainy, Fox and Max..

Q&a WITH TRACIE PETERSON:

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What is your first step in writing your novels?

I always prepare a detailed synopsis. I start with the concept and then grow it to a line or two and then a paragraph and then flesh that out. Eventually I have a chapter by chapter synopsis that I use as a guideline or map to complete the story. The synopsis gives me an idea of additional research that I’ll need, as well as helps me maintain the pacing and develop of the characters.

What are your techniques for maintaining reader interest?

I try to make the character true to their natures and their responses accordingly. I work to keep the book constantly moving forward so I avoid a lot of back story, flashbacks and purple prose.

What is your favorite genre to write? Why?

Historical – especially romance or family saga. I love the various time periods in America and elsewhere. I love showing that there truly is nothing new – that emotional and spiritual problems in the 1800’s are some of the same we face today. I want each of the books to entertain, but also to educate and encourage.

How/why did you start writing?

I’ve written most of my life. My mother used to give me a pencil and paper and tell me to write a story in order to keep me quiet in church. Afterward she would have me tell her the story. So storytelling has been a part of my life since I was little. I tried to get published in my late teens, but that didn’t work so well as I still had much to learn. Then I had a family and put aside writing for a time, but always read and gathered ideas for books I’d like to write. In 1992 I sent a letter to Barbour Publishing asking for guidelines. I had heard in one of my writer’s meetings that you should also include what you were currently working on or what you had readily available. I told the publisher that I had completed a Christian historical romance and if they would like to see it, I would send it in. Two weeks later I got call from the editor of new line called Heartsong Presents. He ask if I was interested in writing contemporary romance as at the moment he had enough historical. I really wasn’t, but he convinced to try my hand. When I turned that synopsis in, I reminded him that I had a historical romance ready to go. A couple of weeks later – he called and said they’d like to see the historical. Shortly thereafter Barbour Publishing bought it and it became one of the earliest books in the Heartsong series. Later, I switched to Bethany House Publishers because I wanted to write longer novels and at that time Barbour didn’t do that. Now I write exclusively for Bethany House/Baker Publishing. I write as a minister to share the Gospel of Jesus and to offer Biblical application and encouragement. My goal is that through the books the reader will fall more deeply in love with God.

COMING SOON BY TRACIE PETERSON:

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A Sensible Arrangement – Coming March 2014!

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Marty Dandridge Olson is a widow looking for a way out of Texas. Widower Jake Wythe has secured a job as a bank manager in Denver, only to discover that the bank board wants him to be a married man. With Texas in his roots, he advertises for a Lone Star bride, and Marty answers the call. They both agree they are done with romance and love and will make this nothing more than a marriage of convenience.

Marty works to carve out a new life in high-society Denver as Jake works to guide the bank through a collapsing economy. But when money goes missing at the bank and accounting discrepancies point to Jake, he must find a way to prove his innocence. Yet all he wants to do is go back to Texas and own his own ranch. Marty, on the other hand, owns a ranch–one she’s never told her husband about. She hates Texas because it represents the losses in her life. But as the couple grows closer and love begins to bloom, Marty realizes she needs to tell Jake the truth. Can she come to terms with the past and her anger toward God in order to make room for love?

All Things Hidden – Coming January 2014!

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Gwyn Hillerman acts as a nurse at her father’s medical practice in 1935 rural Alaska. Her family life has been rough ever since her mother, hating Alaska, took Gwyn’s younger sister back to Chicago to live.

Dr. Jeremiah Vaughan finds his life suddenly turned upside down when his medical license is stripped away after he loses an affluent patient. In a snowball effect, he then loses his engagement to Gwyn’s sister, Sophia. When the government decides to send a group of families to Alaska in hopes of making a better life, Dr. Hillerman sends a letter urging Jeremiah to join his practice. Thinking his secret would be safe in the isolated Alaska Territory, Jeremiah agrees.

Gwyn and Jeremiah soon recognize a growing attraction to each other. But when another suitor enters the scene and Jeremiah’s secret is revealed, their hopes for a future are threatened.

INTERESTED? PRE-ORDER BY VISITNG TRACE PETERSON’S WEBSITE!

HOME

http://www.traciepetersonbooks.com/comingsoon.html

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?
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LISA BERGREN VISITS SAVURBKS

Welcome

PLEASE WELCOME LISA BERGREN TO SAVURBKS!

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LISA BERGREN’S BIOGRAPHY:

Biography

Lisa T. Bergren is the author of over forty books, with over 2.5 million sold. She lives in Colorado Springs with her family, but is constantly dreaming of her next trip to Italy.

Q&A WITH LISA BERGREN:

Q&A

How do you approach Young Adult Novels compared to writing Adult Novels?

I have a basic understanding of beginning, middle and end, but much of it evolves. I’m a “pantser” writer–writing by the seat of my pants, rather than an exhaustive outliner. This allows me ultimate creativity and the ability to follow where the characters lead, but it sometimes results in extensive rewrites.

When you write a series, do you have the full series planned out or does the series evolve as you write?

I have a basic understanding of beginning, middle and end, but much of it evolves. I’m a “pantser” writer–writing by the seat of my pants, rather than an exhaustive outliner. This allows me ultimate creativity and the ability to follow where the characters lead, but it sometimes results in extensive rewrites.

How do you choose your novels’ time period?

I went with medieval because I wanted to explore that time period pre-Renaissance, when life was more simple and straight-forward, when we were just on the edge of the age of enlightenment.

Where do you come up with your initial story idea?

I wanted to write a page-turner for my reluctant-reader teen girls. I liked the romance of the Twilight series and the action of the Hunger Games, and I have a passion for history (I always wish I could just pop back to another era for the day to experience what it was like)–so time travel seemed like a good option. Modern girls in ancient Italy, full of gorgeous young men fighting for their lives? It seemed like a good equation and I loved writing it. It really is the most fun I’ve ever had, writing a series. And readers can’t seem to get enough. I’ll publish a fifth novel in the River of Time Series soon.

New by Lisa Bergren:

remnants

The year is 2095. Gifted teens known as Remnants have been chosen and trained to act as humanity’s last hope to rectify the horrors that are now part of everyday life.

The Community has trained these teens as warriors and assigned them Knights of the Last Order as protectors. Together, they are a force that will be difficult to bring down.

But the Sons of Sheol, of course, are determined to do just that. As the Remnants begin their mission to course-correct humanity by saving and protecting key individuals, their enemies move to stop them, placing the entire world in peril.

Bestselling author Lisa T. Bergren presents the first book in her new YA futuristic dystopian series—The Remnants Novels—fitting in with the current dystopian trend in the marketplace.

A MUST READ BY LISA BERGREN:

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WATERFALL:

While most American teens would kill for an Italian vacation, the Betarrini sisters have spent every summer of their lives there with their archaeologist parents. And they’re not happy to be back. Stuck on yet another hot, dusty dig, they are bored out of their minds…until they place their hands atop handprints in an ancient tomb and find themselves catapulted into the Fourteenth Century. Gabi emerges in the middle of a dream–or nightmare?–with hot Italian knights in a fierce battle. And so begins her quest to return home…while wondering if she wants to at all.


FIND WATERFALL AT:
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Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/waterfall-lisa-t-bergren/1100569275?ean=9781434764331
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Waterfall-Novel-River-Time-ebook/dp/B005MT8SK8/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=8-2&qid=1382302967

INTERESTED IN OTHER BOOKS IN THE RIVER OF TIME SERIES?

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VISIT LISA BERGREN AT:
HOME
http://www.LisaBergren.com

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?
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MARY LU TYNDALL VISITS SAVURBKS

Welcome
PLEASE WELCOME AUTHOR MARY LU TYNDALL TO SAVURBKS!

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MARY LU TYNDALL’S BIOGRAPHY:

Biography

Mary Lu describes herself as an introvert, patriot, mother of six, the neighborhood cat-lady, tall ship enthusiast, friend of pirates and mermaids, obsessive compulsive control freak, history lover, hopeless romantic, and a sword wielding princess-warrior of the King of Kings. Oh yea, and she’s also a best-selling author of more than 13 novels!

Q&A WITH MARY LU TYNDALL:

Q&A

How/ why did you decide to use the literary techniques of flash-forward and flash-back in your novel “Forsaken Dreams”?

Normally when I’m starting a novel, a particular scene keeps playing over and over in my head. In fact, that scene has usually been filling my thoughts for weeks, even months in advance. I can’t get rid of it! That’s how I know where I want to start my story. In the case of Forsaken Dreams, I kept seeing this massive storm at sea and all my characters being tossed to and fro on a tiny ship headed for Brazil. It reminded me of Jonah running away from God and God sending this huge storm. Anyway, that’s where I began the story, with a bang! Then, of course, I needed to go back and tell the reader how the characters got in that predicament. It was fun and I hope it didn’t confuse too many readers.
If there are any fans of the TV series LOST out there, you know they use this flash-back and forward technique quite well. Of course it’s much easier on TV, but it can be a very effective tool, if used properly, to bring in a character’s backstory.

What are your literary influences?

Jane Austen, Raphael Sabatini, Baroness Orczy, James Fenimore Cooper, Georgette Heyer…to name a few. Excellent authors who wrote adventurous novels you can’t put down! As you can tell, I love the classics.

What was your favorite book to write? Why?

The Redemption, my first novel. It was my favorite to write for a number of reasons. One, because I wrote it without any expectation of it ever getting published. I had no deadline, no editor to please, no reader anticipation, no pressure. It was (and is) a story right from my heart, a reflection of my own life’s struggles to find a father’s unconditional love. Besides, it was just plain fun to write a story about a Christian pirate!

What tips do you have for overcoming writer’s block?

Music always does it for me. Long walks, petting my cats, watching a good movie. Basically just step away from the computer and clear your mind. Do something else that relaxes you, and the words will come. You’d be surprised how many breakthroughs I have while soaking in a hot tub full of bubbles.

A MUST READ BY MARY LU TYNDALL:

forsaken

They Left Everything Behind to Build a New Southern Utopia

Colonel Blake Wallace has seen enough death to last a lifetime. Weary and disillusioned, he slumps beneath the weight of defeat and loss. With his entire family murdered by the North and his name appearing on a list of officers wanted for war crimes, Blake organizes a shipload of southerners who, like him, long to escape the horrors of war and start a new life in a verdant land called Brazil.

Eliza Crawford can barely remember the days of her youth spent in opulence and comfort at her Georgian home. She can’t help but wonder how different her life would be had she not met her late husband, Stanton Watts, a general in the Northern army. Now a war widow, Eliza is rejected by both North and South. Desperate to keep her marriage a secret and escape her past and pain, she longs to start over again in Brazil.

But once the voyage begins, troubles abound. Dangers at sea and enemies from within threaten to keep Blake and Eliza from the new life—and love—they long for.

FIND FORSAKEN DREAMS AT:
books and coffee

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/FORSAKEN-DREAMS-Escape-Paradise-Tyndall/dp/1616265965/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1380930623&sr=8-3

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/forsaken-dreams-marylu-tyndall/1112492329?ean=9781616265960

WANT TO LEARN MORE? VISIT MARY LU TYNDALL AT:

HOME

http://www.marylutyndall.com

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?
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AUTHOR BLOG TOUR!

bkig tiur For the next few weeks, come join Savurbks every Wednesday as authors answer questions about their books and writing!

HOW DOES IT WORK? Green

Starting next week Wednesday, October 16th, answers to questions I posed to several popular authors will be posted. Also included will be author biographies, pictures and book information. Stop by to see what the authors have to say! You might just learn some new interesting facts about your favorite authors and perhaps learn how authors wrote your favorite book!

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After reading the Q&A, leave a comment…the authors just might comment too!

ANY GUESSES? bookshelf

The authors will remain a secret until the Q&A is posted…take a guess, which authors do you think will be visiting the blog?

wave SEE YOU NEXT WEEK!