Saturday, May 11, 2013

Review + Giveaway // Forsaken Dreams by MaryLu Tyndall

H e l l o    L i t e r a r y    M a i d e n s !  Today in addition to a book review, we are so very excited to be able to giveaway a copy of MaryLu Tyndall's newest book, Forsaken Dreams, which is the first book in a fabulous series, Escape To Paradise!! We are so honored to be able to bring you our thoughts on this book, and giveaway away a singed copy of Forsaken Dreams to one of you ladies! :D
// F o r s a k e n    D r e a m s //
E s c a p e    T o    P a r a d i s e  # 1
B y    M a r y L u    T y n d a l l

//Facebook Page//
Title: Forsaken Dreams
Author: MaryLu Tyndall
Source: Received a review a copy from MaryLu
Number of Pages: 320
ISBN: 1616265965
Publisher: Barbour Publishing
Publication Date: March 2013
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Book Description :: {Taken From MaryLu's website}
"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 hopes 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."

// B o o k    T r a i l e r //
Meet the main characters HERE!
// T h e    B o o k   R e v i e w //
Bethany's Review ::
Forsaken Dreams is the first book in the Escape To Paradise series, and the first book I've read by MaryLu, but it certainly won't be the last! At first, I didn't really think a story set out at sea could be very interesting. I mean, your on board a ship at all times, how much action could possibly be going on with such a limited confinement? So I wasn't sure if Forsaken Dreams would be a book that has lots of action and was a real page-turner. However MaryLu totally proved me wrong as Forsaken Dreams is one of the most action-packed books I've ever read! This book was so full of adventure that I changed my mind about how boring I thought a novel set at sea could be, and left me eager for book number two in the series, Elusive Hope which comes out later this year!
It was a very well-written story, with a strong moral of forgiveness, peace and fresh-starts. It was very interesting to see all the people that came on board the New Hope, and see their backgrounds. I found that  most everyone on board was hiding something, and running away from something, with hopes of peace and a clean slate, to start over again in Brazil, where they were sailing. It was interesting how all the characters were in similar positions as far as hiding from something or running from someone, etc. but how they were all from such different backgrounds; the things causing them to be in this position so different from the rest. I enjoyed getting to see how the characters grew as the story progressed, and especially liked, how at the end, the two main characters had a time where they got close to the Lord and re-straightened their faith before moving on in the relationship, though it happened more because they were in a desperate place with no other options.
I loved how from the very first chapter the character is in a life-or-death situation that grips you and gets you turning pages. I love how MaryLu planned that out to start the story in one of the most exciting and heart pounding scenes to start out the book, and then go back and learn about all the characters and how they all came to come on board the New Hope. But yes, this book had so much going on! I loved it! I would be reading late at night, and think "I really need to go to sleep, tomorrow I've got I'm going to stop after I finish this chapter." But then in the last page of the chapter, you learn that some big question is about to be answered, or some exciting or interesting event is on the verge of hitting it's climax. So, you could definitely say that this book is for sure a page-turner. :) I loved how the action didn't stop with the first chapter, it kept going very steadily until the last page - and even then there is the unanswered question about the mysterious shadow in the woods that I have to wait for book number two, to find out what it's all about!
One of the things that I think greatly contributed to all the adventure and excitement, was the amount of characters that you get to know well, instead of just two main characters and a bunch of "side" characters that you hear about a few times, but never really get to know. This story really lets you get to know some of the other characters, and I think there were just enough to make it exciting, but not so many that you get confused with who is who. The list of main characters in the front of the book, that gives a short description of each of the characters really helped to keep everyone straight as well. I have read many books where I'd be confused with the characters and wish that the author would include a short description of each character besides their name, and found this part very helpful in Forsaken Dreams.
Another thing I adored about this book is the beautifully sculpted descriptions that accompanied the action packed adventure! MaryLu would write such luscious descriptions that I could practically feel the wind in my hair, and the salty sea water spray my face, as I stood on the ship, looking out into the unending abyss of blue.
The only thing that I found to be a little over my comfort-zone was the romance side of this novel. Now, I understand that this is a historical romance, however at times I felt like the romance was a bit too passionate for my taste. While this may not be a big deal for some, I realize it may be for others, it just depends on what you are used to. I just felt like at times the passion was too intense and the characters were thinking thoughts they probably shouldn't have, at that time in the relationship, and some of the kissing scenes were described a bit more passionate than I am used to. However, it just totally depends on what you are used to. There were only two parts that got me a bit uncomfortable, and other than this, I really enjoyed the story.
Due to a few mature scenes, I'd recommend this book for mature readers. This is a story set out in the sea, so with it comes the occasional character/s that have a compromising past, and little-to-no moral values, who drinks and like to cause trouble. Plus there was a scenes were a character unsuccessfully attempted to drown, and a lot of the characters had some play in the previous war, so there is some remembrances  from the battle that include violence and blood. I didn't find these things to be too much, besides the romance at times, but again, it's totally a matter of opinion. In mine, I really liked this book and found it to be a very exciting action-packed adventure that will leave you in eager anticipation of book number two...I know I am!
I'd like to sincerely thank MaryLu for providing me to with a review copy of Forsaken Dreams to read and review. I really appreciate that, MaryLu and really enjoyed reading Forsaken Dreams! I can't wait for book two, Elusive Hope to come out! :)
// T h e    G i v e a w a y //
Today we are so very excited and honored to be able to giveaway a signed paperback copy of Forsaken Dreams to one of you! This giveaway is for a signed paperback copy of Forsaken Dreams is open to the U.S., however for those of you who live outside the U.S. MaryLu has offered to e-mail you a e-version of Forsaken Dreams if you win, so that you all may enter. A BIG thank you goes to MaryLu who was so sweet to send us a copy to review and is sponsoring this giveaway!

To enter, use the RaffleCopter form below. To sign in you can ether use your Facebook account or your name and email. Once you sign in there will be actions you can complete to gain entries. The giveaway will end on Saturday May 25th, 2013 and the winner will be notified by email requesting the winners mailing address so MaryLu can mail out the book {If winner lives outside the U.S. she will email the winner an e-version of the book}. The winner's name will also be posted on the blog and announced on the RaffleCopter widget below. If you have any questions about entering then just leave a comment and we will reply back as soon as possible. Before you begin entering this fabulous giveaway, I'd like to thank MaryLu again for offering this lovely giveaway! We sincerely appreciate it, MaryLu! Okay, now you may enter! Have a blessed day!

~ The Literary Maidens {Bethany & Madi}

a Rafflecopter giveaway

N o t e :: I was not paid to review Forsaken Dreams or giveaway a copy on this blog. After contacting the author with a request to host a review and giveaway, Bethany was sent a free copy of Forsaken Dreams from the author to read and review, and was not paid to do so. All thoughts expressed in the review are my own and completely honest and unbiased.


  1. Good morning,
    I haven't had the pleasure of reading one of MaryLu's books, but I look forward to it! I love stories that are set in the 1800's! Especially Christian romance! :)
    Thank you and God bless,
    Becky Griggs

  2. Hello Literary Maidens! This is my first time at your blog. I really enjoyed your review. As yet, I haven't read any of MaryLu's books, but I've read so many good comments about her writing, I am determined to start reading her books. I have also read quite a few blog posts and interviews by her and I admire her Christian testimony. I pray for her often.
    may_dayzee (at) yahoo (dot) com

  3. I've read Veil of Pearls and thought it was a great book. Thanks for the giveaway!

    frequentreader19 (at) gmail (dot) com

  4. Nope, I've never read the book b4 but it sounds really interesting! tnx 4 doing this giveaway!!!!!!! ;D

  5. It sounds really good! :) What age would you recommend it for? My sister might enjoy this.

    1. I'd say at least 14+. It really depends on where your standards stand. I found the romance a bit more than I am used to, but other than that I liked it! Thanks for visiting our blog!

  6. I haven't read any of MaryLu's books but I would like to because they sound interesting! :)

  7. I have never read her books, but this one sounds interesting! (If I win, will I be notified?)

    1. Yes, if you win you will get an email requesting your address. Or you could check back after the giveaway ends, as we will be posting the winners name. Thanks so much for entering!

  8. I haven't read any of MaryLu's book yet - but love descriptive books! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity to win one of her books.

  9. Looks like an exciting story! Thanks for the giveaway!

  10. I've never read any of her books!

  11. I have never read any of MaryLu's books, but I have looked at them before. Her stories always look really exciting! Thanks for the giveaway!

  12. I actually have read one of her books...I am trying to recall the title..."Surrender the Hear" I believe it was. I really enjoyed it, but it was a lot of romance, which I am always cautious about.
    I wouldn't mind reading more of her books, though!

  13. I've never read any of her books, but she sounds like such a descriptive writer, one of my favorite traits of an author. :)

  14. I'm not really a romance fan, but I've heard such good things about her books, I'd give them a try. :)

  15. Haven't read this one - or any of MaryLu's books yet. But this one is getting rave reviews. :)

    Thanks for the great giveaway!

  16. I've never read any of her books... but it's looks interesting! :D

  17. We have MaryLu's books in the Church Library. Our library readers love her books!

  18. I have not read any of Mary Lu's books, but I want to definitely read this one! I love books set back in history, and of course anything with adventure and a bit of romance in them! Those are the best kind of books in my opinion.

  19. Sounds like a great read! Thanks so much for the info. :)

  20. I love her books but I haven't read this one!

  21. I've read two of MaryLu's books: Red Siren and Veil of Pearls. I liked them both. I thought Veil of Pearls was excellent. I thought she handled the issue of prejudice very well. I'm really looking forward to reading Forsaken Dreams so would love to win a copy here.
    Thanks for the chance.


  22. She has to be my favourite author! Love the stories and how Gods love shines through! :) amazing!


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