Get swept away in a high-tide of romance and adventure from acclaimed author M. L. Tyndall. Attempting to forget about a painful past, Hope Westcott plunges into Charles Towne society trying to find love and acceptance. Captain Nathaniel Mason is determined to build his shipping business and doesn’t need a romantic entanglement—especially with a woman like Hope. When Hope’s adventure-seeking puts her freedom—and her life—in jeopardy, will Nathaniel turn his back or follow God’s voice and sacrifice everything to save her?
About the Author
MaryLu Tyndall, a Christy Award finalist and bestselling author of the Legacy of the King’s Pirates series, is known for her adventurous historical romances filled with deep spiritual themes. She holds a degree in math and worked as a software engineer for fifteen years before testing the waters as a writer. MaryLu currently writes full time and makes her home on the California coast with her husband, six kids, and four cats. Her passion is to write page-turning, romantic adventures that not only entertain but open people’s eyes to their God-given potential. MaryLu is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America.
Read an Excerpt
The Blue Enchantress
By M.L. Tyndall
Barbour Publishing, Inc.Copyright © 2009 M. L. Tyndall
All rights reserved.
St. Kitts, September 1718
"Gentlemen, what will ye offer for this rare treasure of a lady?" The words crashed over Hope Westcott like bilge water. "Why, she'll make any of ye a fine wife, a cook, a housemaid"—the man gave a lascivious chuckle—"whate'er ye desire."
"How 'bout someone to warm me bed at night," one man bellowed, and a cacophony of chortles gurgled through the air.
Hope slammed her eyes shut against the mob of men who pressed on three sides of the tall wooden platform, shoving one another to get a better peek at her. Something crawled over her foot, and she pried her eyes open, keeping her face lowered. A black spider skittered away. Red scrapes and bruises marred her bare feet. When had she lost her satin shoes—the gold braided ones she'd worn to impress Lord Falkland? She couldn't recall.
"What d'ye say? How much for this fine young lady?" The man grabbed a fistful of her hair and yanked her head back. Pain, like a dozen claws, pierced her skull. "She's a handsome one, to be sure. And these golden locks." He attempted to slide his fingers through her matted strands, but before becoming hopelessly entangled in them, he jerked his hand free, wrenching out a clump of her hair. Hope winced. "Have ye seen the likes of them?"
Ribald whistles and groans of agreement spewed over her.
"Two shillings," one man yelled.
Hope dared to glance across the throng amassing before the auction block. A wild sea of lustful eyes sprayed over her. A band of men dressed in garments stained with dirt and sweat bunched toward the front, yelling out bids. Behind them, other men in velvet waistcoats leaned their heads together, no doubt to discuss the value of this recent offering, while studying her as if she were a breeding mare. Slaves knelt in the dirt along the outskirts of the mob, waiting for their masters. Beyond them, a row of wooden buildings stretched in either direction. Brazen women emerged from a tavern and draped themselves over the railings, watching Hope's predicament with interest. On the street, ladies in modish gowns averted their eyes as they tugged the men on their arms from the sordid scene.
Hope lowered her head. This can't be happening. I'm dreaming. I am still on the ship. Just a nightmare. Only a nightmare. Humiliation swept over her with an ever-rising dread as the reality of her situation blasted its way through her mind.
She swallowed hard and tried to drown out the grunts and salacious insults tossed her way by the bartering rabble. Perhaps if she couldn't hear them, if she couldn't see them, they would disappear and she would wake up back home, safe in Charles Towne, safe in her bedchamber, safe with her sisters, just like she was before she'd put her trust in a man who betrayed her.
"Egad, man. Two shillings, is it? For this beauty?" The auctioneer spit off to the side. The yellowish glob landed on Hope's skirt. Her heart felt as though it had liquefied into an equally offensive blob and oozed down beside it.
How did I get here? In her terror, she could not remember. She raised her gaze to the auctioneer. Cold eyes, hard like marbles, met hers, and a sinister grin twisted his lips. He adjusted his tricorn to further shade his chubby face from the burning sun.
"She looks too feeble for any real work," another man yelled.
The sounds of the crowd dimmed. The men's fists forged into the air as if pushing through mud. Garbled laughter drained from their yellow-toothed mouths like molasses. Hope's heart beat slower, and she wished for death.
The gentle lap of waves caressed her ears, their peaceful cadence drawing her away. Tearing her gaze from the nightmarish spectacle, she glanced over her shoulder, past the muscled henchmen who'd escorted her here. Two docks jutted out into a small bay brimming with sparkling turquoise water where several ships rocked back and forth as if shaking their heads at her in pity. Salt and papaya and sun combined in a pleasant aroma that lured her mind away from her present horror.
Her eyes locked upon the glimmering red and gold figurine of Ares at the bow of Lord Falkland's ship. She blinked back the burning behind her eyes. When she'd boarded it nigh a week past—or was it two weeks?—all her hopes and dreams had boarded with her. Somewhere along the way, they had been cast into the depths of the sea. She only wished she had joined them. Although the ship gleamed majestically in the bay, all she had seen of it for weeks had been the four walls of a small cabin below deck.
The roar of the crowd wrenched her mind back to the present and turned her face forward.
"'Tis robbery, and ye know it," the auctioneer barked. "Where are any of ye clods goin' t' find a real lady like this?"
A stream of perspiration raced down Hope's back as if seeking escape. But there was no escape. She was about to be sold as a slave, a harlot to one of these cruel and prurient taskmasters. A fate worse than death. A fate her sister had fought hard to keep her from. A fate Hope had brought upon herself. Numbness crept over her even as her eyes filled with tears. Oh God. This can't be happening.
She gazed upward at the blue sky dusted with thick clouds, hoping for some deliverance, some sign that God had not abandoned her.
The men continued to haggle, their voices booming louder and louder, grating over her like the howls of demons.
Her head felt like it had detached from her body and was floating up to join the clouds. Palm trees danced in the light breeze coming off the bay. Their tall trunks and fronds formed an oscillating blur of green and brown. The buildings, the mob, and the whole heinous scene joined the growing mass and began twirling around Hope. Her legs turned to jelly, and she toppled to the platform.
"Get up!" A sharp crack stung her cheek. Two hands like rough rope clamped over her arms and dragged her to her feet. Pain lanced through her right foot where a splinter had found a home. Holding a hand to her stinging face, Hope sobbed.
The henchman released her with a grunt of disgust.
"I told ye she won't last a week," one burly man shouted.
"She ain't good for nothing but to look at."
Planting a strained grin upon his lips, the auctioneer swatted her rear end. "Aye, but she's much more stout than she appears, gentlemen."
Horrified and no longer caring about the repercussions, Hope slapped the man's face. He raised his fist, and she cowered. The crowd roared its mirth.
"One pound, then," a tall man sporting a white wig called out. "I could use me a pretty wench." Withdrawing a handkerchief, he dabbed at the perspiration on his forehead.
Wench. Slave. Hope shook her head, trying to force herself to accept what her mind kept trying to deny. A sudden surge of courage, based on naught but her instinct to survive, stiffened her spine. She thrust out her chin and faced the auctioneer. "I beg your pardon, sir. There's been a mistake. I am no slave."
"Indeed?" He cocked one brow and gave her a patronizing smirk.
Hope searched the horde for a sympathetic face—just one. "My name is Miss Hope Westcott," she shouted. "My father is Admiral Henry Westcott. I live in Charles Towne with my two sisters."
"And I'm King George," a farmer howled, slapping his knee.
"My father will pay handsomely for my safe return." Hope scanned the leering faces. Not one. Not one look of sympathy or belief or kindness. Fear crawled up her throat. She stomped her foot, sending a shard of pain up her leg. "You must believe me," she sobbed. "I don't belong here."
Ignoring the laughter, Hope spotted a purple plume fluttering in the breeze atop a gold-trimmed hat in the distance. "Arthur!" She darted for the stairs but two hands grabbed her from behind and held her in place. "Don't leave me! Lord Falkland!" She struggled in her captor's grasp. His grip tightened, sending a throbbing ache across her back.
Swerving about, Lord Falkland tapped his cane into the dirt and tipped the brim of his hat up, but the distance between them forbade Hope a vision of his expression.
"Tell them who I am, Arthur. Please save me!"
He leaned toward the woman beside him and said something, then coughed into his hand. What is he doing? The man who once professed an undying love for Hope, the man who promised to marry her, to love her forever, the man who bore the responsibility for her being here in the first place. How could he stand there and do nothing while she met such a hideous fate?
The elegant lady beside him turned her nose up at Hope, then, threading her arm through Lord Falkland's, she wheeled him around and pulled him down the road.
Hope watched him leave, and with each step of his cordovan boots, her heart and her very soul sank deeper into the wood of the auction block beneath her feet.
Nothing made any sense. Had the world gone completely mad?
"Two pounds," a corpulent man in the back roared.
A memory flashed through Hope's mind as she gazed across the band of men. A vision of African slaves, women and children, being auctioned off in Charles Towne. How many times had she passed by, ignoring them, uncaring, unconcerned by the proceedings?
Was this God's way of repaying her for her selfishness, her lack of charity?
Disappointed curses rumbled among the men at the front, who had obviously reached their limit of coin.
The auctioneer's mouth spread wide, greed dripping from its corners. "Five pounds, gentlemen. Do I hear six for this lovely lady?"
A blast of hot air rolled over Hope, stealing her breath. Human sweat, fish, and horse manure filled her nose and saturated her skin. The unforgiving sun beat a hot hammer atop her head until she felt she would ignite into a burning torch at any moment. Indeed, she prayed she would. Better to be reduced to a pile of ashes than endure what the future held for her.
"Six pounds," a short man with a round belly and stiff brown wig yelled from the back of the mob in a tone that indicated he knew what he was doing and had no intention of losing his prize. Decked in a fine damask waistcoat, silk breeches, and a gold-chained pocket watch, which he kept snapping open and shut, he exuded wealth and power.
Hope's stomach twisted into a vicious knot, and she clutched her throat to keep from heaving whatever shred of moisture remained in her empty stomach.
The auctioneer gaped at her, obviously shocked she could command such a price. Rumblings overtook the crowd as the short man pushed his way through to claim his prize. The closer he came, the faster Hope's chest heaved and the lighter her head became. Blood pounded in her ears, drowning out the groans of the mob. No, God. No.
"Do I hear seven?" the auctioneer bellowed. "She's young and will breed you some fine sons."
"Just what I'll be needing." The man halted at the platform, glanced over the crowd for any possible competitors, then took the stairs to Hope's right. He halted beside her too close for propriety's sake and assailed her with the stench of lard and tobacco. A long purple scar crossed his bloated red face as his eyes grazed over her like a stallion on a breeding mare. Hope shuddered and gasped for a breath of air. Her palms broke out in a sweat, and she rubbed them on her already moist gown.
The auctioneer threw a hand to his hip and gazed over the crowd.
The man squeezed her arms, and Hope snapped from his grasp and took a step back, abhorred at his audacity. He chuckled. "Not much muscle on her, but she's got pluck."
He belched, placed his watch back into the fob pocket of his breeches, and removed a leather pouch from his belt. "Six pounds it is."
The silver tip of a sword hung at his side. If Hope were quick about it, perhaps she could grab it and, with some luck, fight her way out of here. She clenched her teeth. Who was she trying to fool? Where was her pirate sister when she needed her? Surely Faith would know exactly what to do. Yet what did it matter? Hope would rather die trying to escape than become this loathsome man's slave.
As the man counted out the coins into the auctioneer's greedy hands, Hope reached for the sword.CHAPTER 2
"Seven pounds." Nathaniel Mason charged toward the platform, shoving his way through the unruly throng. "Seven pounds." Even as he bellowed the amount, he wondered if he had lost his mind. That was over half of the coin in his money pouch, and he needed all of it to purchase his supplies for the return trip to Charles Towne.
The stout man on the platform beside Miss Hope swung about and glared at Nathaniel as if he were naught but an annoying bug. His hand froze in midair, a gold coin clenched between his stubby fingers. "What is the meaning of this?"
The auctioneer's eyes glinted with greedy amusement as he doffed his tricorn and swept it through the air with a bow of deference. "Seven pounds from the gentlemen in the blue waistcoat. Do I hear eight?" He raised a questioning brow toward the man beside him before surveying the grumbling mob.
"I wouldn't pay eight pounds fer me own mother!" a man in front of the crowd cackled, eliciting squawks of laughter from all those around him.
"Eight." The red-faced man continued to count out his coins into the auctioneer's open pouch as if no opposition could prevent him from carrying out his task.
Shoving through the horde of sweaty, cursing men, Nathaniel leapt upon the platform. "Nine pounds," he shouted above the clamor and allowed his gaze to brush over Miss Hope.
When he'd first seen her from across the street where he'd been arranging with a merchant to load the man's goods aboard ship, his heart had plunged like a stone into his boots. Though the woman resembled Miss Hope in hair and color of skin, he could not believe it was the lady he knew from Charles Towne—not so far from the safety of her home, not in such slovenly condition, and certainly not being sold as an indentured servant. But as he approached the throng, he recognized the familiar golden hair with a hint of red, and those glistening eyes the color of the Caribbean Sea that had mesmerized him back home.
And his heart had rammed into his ribs.
How had she come to such dire straits? Kidnapped. The word blasted through his thoughts. 'Twas the only explanation. White women brought a handsome price in the islands, where they were in short supply. And Miss Hope's particular beauty would lure many a slave trader to steal her from her home, take her far away where no one would know her, and sell her to some lonely, desperate plantation owner. In these savage lands, most people looked the other way at such injustices. The last time he'd seen her, she'd been strolling down the streets of Charles Towne attired in a fine taffeta gown, her arm entwined around that of a marine.
And if he recalled, tossing her snooty nose in the air at him as well.
Like she always had. Belittled him. Ignored him. Treated him as though he were dung on the street.
You owe her nothing.
But now those crystal blue eyes locked upon his as if he were her only lifeline in a storm threatening to drown her beneath its waves. Dirt smudged her face and neck. Dark circles tugged the skin beneath her eyes. Her hair hung loose in tangled nests upon a stained and tattered gown. "Mr. Mason." She managed to whisper his name, and that one whisper held all the desperation and pleading he needed to continue.
"The lady is mine, sir." The rotund merchantman gave Nathaniel a cursory glance. "I have already made a bargain with this man, and as you can see I am sealing it with my payment."
"Aye, let 'im have her," a lanky man from the crowd barked at Nathaniel. "Garrison ain't had no lady in years."
Laughter roared across the mob like a sudden thunderstorm, and the merchantman's face blossomed in a mad dash of crimson. He shot the man a vicious glare before continuing to count his money.
"Me vote goes t' the young sailor," another shorter man bellowed. "He looks like he's been out t' sea far too long an' needs a wench t' warm his bed." He surveyed the chortling mob. "Who'll care to place a wager on him?"
An onslaught of bets saturated the air like a tropical downpour.
Nathaniel shoved his way between Mr. Garrison and Hope, guiding her behind him, and faced the auctioneer. "Is the auction closed, sir?"
"Nay." The man grinned. "Not as long as the bidding continues." He wiped spittle from his chin. "Truth be told, I may get to my drink early today."
"Then I believe the last offer was nine pounds." Nathaniel reached for his money pouch.
Excerpted from The Blue Enchantress by M.L. Tyndall. Copyright © 2009 M. L. Tyndall. Excerpted by permission of Barbour Publishing, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Hope Wescott is a completely believable character, and Nathaniel is an honorable man who still has his own faults. I loved reading about their experiences and the power and beauty of the ocean setting with hurricanes and tropical islands. Although this book is a sequel, it can still stand alone. Still, I doubt that anyone who reads this book could stop themselves from reading the other two books in the trilogy! I know I couldn't!
In 1718 on Saint Kitts Hope Westcott has no hope for her future as she stands in disbelief on a slave auction block about to be sold. She regrets the choices she has made and prays that God gives her a chance to redeem herself. Captain Nathaniel Mason detests loose women so though he sees despondent Hope for sale, he leans towards leaving her to wallow in her what she wrought. He wants to walk away and go back to his shipbuilding business in Charles Towne, but cannot feel anything but pity for the wench; at least that is the rationale he gives himself when he goes to liberate her. Still he argues with himself that he does not need a fallen dove in his life, but heeds the Lord's words of casting the first stone. The latest Charles Town Belles historical romance (see THE RED SIREN for Hope's sister Faith's tale) is a super exhilarating inspirational tale starring two individuals who make the story line work. He is a pious person, but in a way arrogant as he looks down on those who take a different path; she has made mistakes but plans to redeem herself. Her rationale for seeking redemption changes as she changes. If you have not read M.L. Tyndale, you are missing out on one of the best authors at combining character-driven, action packed historicals (on sea and on land) with the underlying inspiring message of the Lord is there for everyone who enters his house. Harriet Klausner
First of all, I would like to extend a heartfelt “Thank you” to Mary Lu Tyndall and her publisher for sending me a copy of "The Blue Enchantress" to review for them. I have always been grateful for this generosity, and I am trying to improve at being consistent in taking the time to thank these wonderfully giving individuals in a public forum. I really appreciate your time, effort and expense in making a reviewer copy available to me. Mary Lu Tyndall’s latest novel in the Charles Towne Belles series is a bewitching romantic adventure on the high seas entitled “The Blue Enchantress”. In this second book, we encounter pirates, a slave auction, a horrific hurricane that causes a shipwreck, and several other adventures as we follow the journey of Hope Westcott. If you recall from the first book in the series, “The Red Siren”, Hope was going to stow away on a ship that carried her lover, Lord Falkland, away from Charles Towne. Now, shunned by the man she thought loved her, she finds herself on a slave auction block far away from her home. Enter Nathaniel Mason, a merchant ship captain who is also from Charles Towne who gives up everything to save this woman that he has adored from afar for some time. This novel contained many beautiful elements: first and foremost, the ribbon of faith and evangelism that is so predominant frequently left me in tears; the tropical island settings and those aboard ship are so vividly penned that I could feel the stiff salt water on my own skin; these characters are dimensional and many become friends by the end of the tale. But this leads to my frustration with the book, as well. Some of these characters are so stubborn, they appear foolish. I understand the elements of crafting a story, and part of that involves creating tension in the reader. As always, MaryLu does this beautifully, but I prefer my tension from suspense and adventure, not from a character denying his feelings until the reader is so annoyed with his delays that she is ready to toss the book across the room. But then I understood the delay and actually drew deeper into the story until yet another obstacle presented itself. I thought I was upset BEFORE! HAH! Still this is a beautiful novel. My only recommendation is that you make sure you have enough time to sit and read chapters 31 through 35 without putting the book down. Needless to say, I cannot wait for the next installment in this series, “The Raven Saint”.
The Blue Enchantress is the second book in the Charles Towne Belles series. Hope and Nathaniel live two totally different life styles. Hope is loose and desperate to be with her "finance", but he has left her behind. Nathaniel admires Hope and sacrifices much for her. As the book progresses, their relationship alters. Hope comes to love Nate and Nate proves over and over that he is a true gentleman. There are some who don't want Hope and Nathaniel’s relationship to work out, however. I love this book. Lots of Hope's bad choices are made in the first book, this book satisfies the cliff hanger of the last book, but creates a new one for the third book. I've read this book three times. It's very encouraging and exciting. A must read.
I enjoyed The Blue Enchantress completely. While Grace is very godly, and Faith has found the Lord again; Hope Westcott has made more than a few tragic mistakes in her life. Rejected by someone she thought loved her, and the rescued by a good ship captain who gives up everything to save her, Hope fights to find an everlasting hope in Jesus Christ. Was a bittersweet story with a wonderful ending. Certainly a fantastic find.
I think I liked this book even better than The Red Siren, the first book in this beautifully written series. Hope was a very believable character that I was rooting for throughout the whole story. She struggles with very real problems. I liked Nathaniel very much and thought he was a wonderfully-written character. He was very kind to hope most of the time. MaryLu Tyndall describes her settings so well, I felt like I was with the characters in most of the scenes. I definitely loved this book and it kept me up well into the night because I just couldn't put it down. There are twists after twists in this novel. I would recommend it to friends and family.
I remember when I heard this book was coming out. I waited and waited. The year before I read it seemed like forever. The wait wasn't a waste either. Well written. I like that MaryLu knows how to continue the characters from previous novels accurately. Often the characters all seem alike once they are no longer the main. I notice that MaryLu does not do that, and keeps their distinct personalities separate. It makes for an amazing read!
The Blue Enchantress by M.L. Tyndall is the second book in the Charles Towne Belles series. The first book is The Red Siren and the third is The Raven Saint. The books are about three sisters: Faith, Hope & Grace Wescott. They have an older sister who is married and still in England, her name is Charity. Their father is an Admiral in the Royal Navy and spends more time at sea then with his family. Their mother passed away during childbirth. Hope Wescott has always seemed vain, self-centered and a flirt. Her father dismissed her without attention. When Hope received the attention from Lord Falkland she began sneaking off with him. Soon her reputation was in shatter around Charles Towne because she was seen with the rogue and in the taverns as well. Hope was desperate for love. And she had been assaulted at age seventeen and already seen herself as sullied. When Arthur Falkland said he was leaving for a bit she decided to sneak on the ship and surprise him so they could be married sooner. Only problem was that Arthur was already married and had his wife with him. Nathaniel Mason struggles as an adult with the fact that his mother was a harlot. Even though a Pastor took him in after his mother's death and Nathaniel is a strong believer he still struggles with being good enough. Especially the way the beautiful Hope looks down her nose at him whenever they pass. As Nathaniel passes a slave auction while at St. Kitts he stops when he see's the ragged mess of a person being auctioned is actually Hope Wescott. In the end he buys her freedom and it costs him his ship. He had assumed she had been kidnapped so when he finds it was over an illicit affair he is not happy. And no sooner are they on a ship for home that she is back to her flirtatious ways with the sailors on the ship. The trip from St. Kitts to the Carolina's is packed full of adventure. The books are written so that you experience them. You feel like you are in the hurricane, stranded on an island, getting sand flea bites, meeting pirates that need a bath, seeing the glory of one of God's sunsets, the dark expanse of water and sky and the spray of the sea hitting you while you stand on the deck. And if Nathaniel can survive with any earthly possessions, his peace of mind and no broken bones he will be happy. It seems where Hope is there is one accident after another. Abigail the missionary's daughter, Elise, Gavin, Captain Poole the pirate, the snooty Major Paine and the Hendrick's family are among some of the folks you will travel with on this adventure. Book received through NetGalley for review.
I've read this book 3 times now, and never get tired of it! MaryLu Tyndall has a way of writing that speaks to the heart, and opens doors to a whole other time and place. Hope Westcott has always wanted to be truly loved and cared for, but every corner she turns around she heads in the wrong direction. She has already had an affair with Lord Arthur Falkland that circulated rumors around town. She wants to do her best to be a lady, and win the love of a man she knows will be nigh onto impossible. Nathaniel Mason is a God-fearing gentleman who wants to build onto his merchant business. When he runs into the beguiling woman he once fancied, he battles with what the right decision is and what the wrong one is. He just wants to run as far away from Miss Hope as possible, but he can't. When these two meet up and get shipwrecked, events happen that will keep you turning the next page. Highly reccomend the book!
We return to the coast of Charles Towne shortly after Faith is pardoned for piracy and wed to her Captain Waite only to discover that the middle Westcott sister, Hope, has stowed away on a boat for England to be with her lover, Lord Falkland. To her surprise the Lord Falkland has a Mrs. Falkland and Hope is set off at the next port to be sold on the auction block into slavery. An acquaintance from home, Mr. Mason, comes to her rescue, giving half of what he owns to buy her and take her back to her home. This sets the stage for a trip through a hurricane, a ship wreck, and pirates with quite an odd moral code. While I found Hope to be a spoiled flirtatious brat, there was something endearing and vulnerable about her. Mr. Mason on the other hand is a self-righteous snot, and I didn't particularly care for him until Hope somehow worked her magic. Once again, Tyndall has introduced not only memorable main characters, but a group of side characters that I fell in love with as well. The story was engaging and entertaining - a great follow up to The Red Siren. The story is once again a Christian tale, but avoids being overly preachy and just becomes another aspect of the story. 4/5
I had the privilege of interviewing M. L. Tyndall, on our radio show "Kingdom Highlights", for her new book, "The Blue Enchantress", the second book in her series, "Charles Towne Belles published by Barbour. If you haven't read the first book you have missed a great treat. Ms. Tyndall knows how to craft a great story filled with action, suspense and wonderful romance. Don't start this book late at night because it will be very difficult to put it down or stop thinking about it. At the end of book one we learned that the second sister, Hope, had stowed away on her married lovers ship in order to be with him. At the beginning of this book Hope is standing at a slave auction about to be sold to the highest bidder; her married lover claimed to have no knowledge of who she was when she was captured as a stowaway. Nathaniel Mason, a merchant and shipbuilder, sees Hope on the auction block and goes to bid for her to set her free and return her home but the bidding goes to high and, in an effort to prevent her from falling into the hands of a man without honor, he sells his merchant ship to pay for her. Then to get them both home Mr. Mason signs on as a navigator on another merchant ship where the captain is not quite sane. There is a hurricane, a shipwreck, jungle survival, near death experiences and pirates. And in all of this Ms. Tyndall finds time to develop the romance between Mr. Mason and Hope As in the first book this is more than a story about pirates this is a story about "Hope", not the person the action as in Faith, Hope and Charity. The books are following the parable of the sower and the seed and the ground that the seed fell upon. In this book it is the ground of thorns. Despite all that Hope (the person) has had to endure can God win her over to His side and heal her of her pain? This is also a story of spiritual warfare and how a believer can change the atmosphere of a room or a situation just by his/her being there. i recommend this book highly and am greatly looking forward to book three in the series. If you missed the interview for "The Blue Enchantress" and would like to listen to it and/or would like to hear the previous interview where we discussed the first book please go to www.kingdomhighlights.org where they are available On Demand. To listen to 24 Christian music please visit our internet radio station www.kingdomairwaves.org Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Barbour Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
The Blue Enchantress is another excellent story from M. L. Tyndall. I have read all of this author's books to date. This story contains the typical Tyndall fire that all good romances must possess for me to thoroughly enjoy them. The kisses are just scorching enough (for a Christian romance novel) to make the reader breathless. The back and forth tug of war between the characters and the misunderstandings was also very well done. I particularly enjoyed the character arc with Hope and how much she grew through her suffering. I loved how she had to learn to forgive herself and allow God to unconditionally love her. Isn't it true that before we can love ourselves or unselfishly love someone else, we must fully understand God's unconditional love for us? That was SO well done. The tension was just right, too. Overall the pacing was good, but there was a small slow spot in the middle. I can't recall where that was, but it didn't last long and I plowed right through to the end. I am looking forward to the third installment in this series. I can't get enough of this author's books and the adventures her characters have as they travel across the seas. I highly recommend this story to people who love books with romantic tension and a strong spiritual element.
Oh. My. Goodness. I loved it! M.L. Tyndall has an amazing way of writing. She can write a suspenseful scene like no one else. Here is an example: "The maelstrom outside the tiny glass oval writhed in an undulating vision of raging black clouds one second and a hissing caldron of white-capped water the next." I even became shaky during the hurricane! Tyndall draws you in, so that you are on the edge of your seat. She will make you laugh, cry, and never want to put the book down. Hope Westcott is a character that I think every woman can relate to. Broken by life, only valuing her outward appearance, she searches for love in all the wrong places. Tyndall has a way of putting you in the character's shoes, and she makes the story come alive in a way that most authors never achieve. There was only one thing that I didn't like and that is on the back cover. It says, ".God's call on his life to become an impoverished pastor." That is not true. God doesn't want us to be impoverished. In the Bible it says that God wants us to be healthy and prosperous. However, in the book it is not said that he is called to be an impoverished pastor. It only says that he is poor now, and he will start out being a poor pastor, not that he must be, or is called to be, poor. I think this was a simple mistake in the writing of the back cover, as it is not portrayed that way in the book. I definite to-read!
Ah, to be thrown back into the day where the big ships sailed and pirates prowled the seas. In Marylu's book you can feel the ocean spray and hear the waves. She's written a well crafted and exciting tale of love and adventure. With twists and turns and colroful characters, she has you turning the pages to see what happens next. A good read that leaves you wanting more.
In her second novel about the Belles of Charles Towne, the lovely daughters of Admiral Westcott, MaryLu Tyndall scores big once again. Her historical fiction is spot on in its authenticity and historic details. Set in the early 1700's, the novel plunges us deep into the culture of the day. You can feel the dust, the wind, the darkness; you can smell the sea, the rain, and the putrid garbage in the ugly sections of St. Kitts. You can also feel the emotions of the characters, from rage to deep love and compassion, from icy coldness to strong passion. Mrs. Tyndall is the whole package as a writer: her characters are well-developed, complex, and believable; the action is superb and often breath-taking; while we expect certain developments to take place (she is, after all, writing romance!), there are quite a few surprising events and changes throughout the story. And as is always true in her novels, the details, the descriptions, are the best I've ever read. We as readers experience it all, good and bad; we are utterly immersed in this world. She also succeeds in making us, or at least me, care about some characters that really didn't seem that lovable at first. Like Hope, who was a snobbish rich girl always throwing herself at men, embarrassing her family, and not seeming to care about anyone but herself. Then there's a woman on the ship with her, a very pregnant lady, who seems so cold and snooty at first. This is just one of the lessons of the book to make us look at things from God's perspective. The God factor is evident everywhere in the novel,but not in a forced or preachy way; the spiritual is integral to the characters, their growth, and the plot itself. Lessons have to do with the true gospel, our need for God's love above all else, learning to love as God does, trust, prejudice, prayer, faith, and so much more. So many parts of the book struck me with the beauty of the truth that MaryLu Tyndall imparts through her characters. In case you can't tell, I highly recommend The Blue Enchantress. It's an adult novel, but I know teenage girls will love it, too. Anyone who loves historical fiction or romantic novels will enjoy it for sure.
I love M.L. Tyndall's books. The whole pirates and buccaneers, swashbuckling and ladies in distress, being stranded on deserted islands and living life as lords and ladies. No one does it better than M.L. does. The Blue Enchantress is an excellent addition to her previous books and really builds upon The Red Siren (book #1 in the Charles Towne series). We met Hope in book #1, and really didn't like her awhole lot as she was very self centered. In the beginning of book #2 we see that her lifestyle has finally caught up with her in the worst possible way - she is on the slave auction block. How did this happen? What will become of her now? Nathaniel comes along just in time to see this girl from his home town being auctioned to this horrid man and knows that as a Christian man he can't let that happen. So he makes a huge sacrifice to spare her and then vows to see her home safely. That proves to be much easier said than done! The Blue Enchantress is a beautiful story of sacrifice and redemption with tons of pirates and swashbuckling to make my romantic heart go pittypat!
As the pages turn I can hear the metal clanging of sword and the roar of a wave and smell the sea spray. I can hear gulls cry and picture the fish swimming beneath the aquamarine glass of water. Imagery is fabulously portrayed in this second book of the Charles Towne Belles trilogy following a second sister Hope. In the first book, readers were introduced to Faith, a proper lady of Charles Towne, who also happens to be a red haired pirate known as the Red Siren and her two sisters Hope and Grace. Grace is the pious, yet seemly zealous sister who appears to know all when it comes to God and I look forward to her story in the third novel. Hope is one of those characters who grates on your nerves. She happens to do the most ignorant things and get into the most compromising situations and you just want to wash your hands of her. This story of the "Blue Enchantress" is the telling of Hope and how she can have a future if she reaches for it. This is one of those stories where a reader can really relate to Hope and her situation. Who among us has not done something in their past that they felt was unforgivable and that they were too terrible for God to really love. Through out the pages of this pirate adventure, many characters are brought together and show the various elements of realistic people. The missionary, the average Christian male, the pompous jerk with an authority position, and the broken woman and more. It is a reminder and a vivid picture of how each person we come in contact with changes us, as we do to them as well. Some for the good, some for the bad. This is part of a trilogy, but could easily be read as a stand alone novel and enjoyed. Just as the epilogue in the first novel left you thirsting for this one, this epilogue makes you impatient for the third. Highly recommended. One that makes you smile secretly to yourself as well as almost throw it down with angry emotion - this book is a page turner of adventure.
MaryLu Tyndall has a real gift for bringing characters to life and making you feel you know them in a deep personal way. The Blue Enchantress is no exception. MaryLu brings you along on stormy seas and deserted islands. If you've never sailed on a tall ship you'll feel like you have when you finish this book. Her descriptions are fabulous. Ever wonder what it would be like to be stranded on a deserted island? You'll know after reading the Blue Enchantress. From the moment you start reading you will be riveted to the book as MaryLu begins Hopes story with the young woman on the auction block! Don't fret, she is quickly saved by Nathaniel, albeit begrudgingly. Love blossoms but not before God reveals some changes they need to make in their lives. It is a real page turner and you won't want to put it down. Once again MaryLu never disappoints!
For those who have read the Red Siren, they know just what is coming in this new book, it is definitely a series you want to read in order. Hope Westcott's beau, the villainous Lord Falkland, has spurned her advances when she is found on board his ship- the same ship housing his wife. Hence she finds herself standing on the auction block, gazing into a sea of malicious faces, lust pouring from their beings. But she is rescued by a young sea merchant who trades his ship for her ransom. While some would see this as an act of benevolence only to be performed at one's own will, Nathaniel Mason begrudges his act of mercy, because now he has been set back in making his fortune. Both are running from God, yet in two very different ways. Hope longs for love, admiration and attention after being rejected by a father who lavished no love, but saw only faults. And after a terrible deed was committed against her, she believes she is impure and throws herself at every man who comes her way. She can not believe that God can make her pure and forgive her past sins, filling her with a love that is all consuming. Nathaniel sees only her mistakes and scorns her for it, not seeing the love starved person beneath. He feels the call of God on his life to witness and preach, but instead flees to the sea feeling he is adequate in bringing people to Christ. I thought this book was very good, the drama was vivid, the characters seem real and have personal struggles that can be related to. I thought the tension between Hope, God and Nathaniel went a little over long, but in some respects it was needed, because without it you wouldn't have seen the transformations in the end. Oh and one more tantalizing fact- Lord Falkland makes another appearance, and it is anything but good!
Just when I thought MaryLu Tyndall couldn't get any better, she comes out with The Blue Enchantress. She does such a good job of weaving together the characters, plot, romance, and faith. I have been a fan of Tyndall since the first book she wrote and am even more so after reading this book! If you have not read her others, I would strongly recommend it. The Blue Enchantress is the second book of the Charlestown Belles Series, the first being The Red Siren, and the third, coming out January 2010, being The Raven Saint. Can't wait! [=
Hope Westcott envies her sisters' larger than life personalities, and wishes she could be brave like Faith, the fiery pirate-ess, or pious like Grace, the straight-laced saint. Hope's best features only seem to get her into trouble with men who would exploit her, like Lord Arthur Falkland. The Blue Enchantress opens up as Lord Falkland abandons Hope to a white slavery auction in the Caribbean. Nathaniel Mason-an admiring acquaintance from Charles Town--stumbles upon her just in time. God directs Nathaniel to buy her freedom with his hand-crafted ship, the vehicle to realize his dreams of becoming a wealthy merchant. He obeys, but his resentment simmers through one calamity after another. Thrown together by her poor judgment and his calculated climb to success, they embark for Charles Town on an ill-fated merchantman. A hurricane lands them on a deserted island with a handful of survivors, some friend and some foe. Hope contracts fever, and Nathaniel cares for her, knitting Hope's heart to the selfless and gallant man. Love defies them as she feels she could never meet his approval with her sullied past. He, meanwhile, believes Hope fickle at best, incapable of fidelity at worst. By the time Nathaniel realizes her heart's desire is for him alone, it seems too late, unless he can rescue her once more. Will he pay the ultimate price for love? Can she overcome her coquetting tendencies to win the admiration of a godly man? This book had more peaks and troughs, adventure and action, twists and turns than an ocean voyage on a pirate ship. Tyndall never allows the reader to take a breath! Pages burn to reveal characters' secrets, the outcome of duels and romantic rivalries, and above all, the smoldering question of how two souls with troubled pasts find comfort and love. Written with skill and insight, and a keen knowledge of history and all things nautical, this thrill-ride of a romance makes a perfect beach read or stay-cation. One of the best books I've read in a few years, and a great tribute to a skilled romance writer. Fans of Frank Peretti will appreciate the subtle influence in the spiritual thread with supernatural imagery well-played. This pearl is not to be missed among the clutter of shells this summer.
The Blue Enchantress first and foremost is a Christian romance novel. If I had known this going into the book, perhaps I wouldn¿t have been so disappointed with the lackluster, unsatisfying ending. Don¿t expect a hot, steamy pay-off in the end.With that said, the book is a harrowing tale of Hope Westcott and her arduous transformation from a carefree trollop into a god-abiding gentlewoman. This all takes place on the perilous high seas, complete with a deserted island, meeting up with some pirates, and a hurricane or two. Playing second fiddle to Hope Westcott is Nathaniel Mason, an honest, pious, carpenter, sea navigator, love interest, oh and messenger of god.The oceanic story in The Blue Enchantress would have made a decent adventure if it had been more fleshed out, but it¿s obvious that the characters and their relationships with each other are the focus of the novel. It¿s a shame because most of them are so one-dimensional and transparent in their motivations that none of them are that convincing as real people.One problem in the novel is our heroine, if you can call her such, Hope Westcott. She seems so helpless, selfish, and uninteresting that it¿s hard to believe so many men in the novel fall head over heels for her. Maybe I missed something by not reading the first book in this series. In the first half of the novel, she has no redeeming qualities (other than being a curvaceous treat for the eyes), and when the author finally writes something redeeming about her, I¿ve long stopped caring.Another problem, and maybe this is why The Blue Enchantress didn¿t work for me, is the heavy handedness with religion. In the first few pages of the book, I didn¿t bat an eye at the mentions of god, figuring that people were more open about being good Christians in the colonial days. But then, more and more references to god, the Bible, and spiritual things popped up. This is all fine and dandy, but it takes most of the story¿s tension away when a benevolent god will solve all problems, cure all illnesses, and pretty much take care of everyone as long as they¿re willing to accept him.The Blue Enchantress had such a good setup for an epic adventure on the high seas, but the excitement diminished halfway through and the ending left me unsatisfied. On a movie-rating scale, I¿d rate the steaminess as a PG, not even a PG-13. Who wants to read a hot and steamy romance novel about pirates when it¿s not even a PG-13? One positive thing I have to say about the book is that it certainly is written a lot better than the Twilight series, so if you¿re a mother who wants to push the whole abstinence thing on your daughter, this may be a better book.
Wonderful book! Since I have not read the first book in this series, I wasn't sure I should jump right in, but I am glad I did! I could not put this book down, starting at the very first chapter! Now to find the first book in the series, too!
This has actually been a bit suspenseful at times. I had never read this author before and really like to stay away from historical fiction so it would seem I need to give a thumbs up on this one. It was enjoyable and I may have to go back and read the first book of the series. The characters were not as deep as I like them, but nevertheless, an enjoyable book.
I was skeptical when I received this book and remain so after having read it. I was not quite sure what a 'Christian Romance' novel would be like but I gave it a shot. However, the book, besides being predictable and poorly written, was so on-the-nose that it made me roll my eyes entirely too many times. In my opinion, women read romance for a fantasy, not realism or religion, and for the writer to write the main woman as a pale imitation of Scarlett O'Hara given a make-over as a damsel in distress is a mistake. This is not fantasy, it is condescending. And the man she is supposed to be in love with is feeling guilty about lusting after her...what kind of romance does that lead to?Not all romances need to be the same, but it needs to be engaging enough to make the readers forget there is no sex. The Blue Enchantress do not do that