Friday, May 06, 2011

Review- Surrender the Heart by MaryLu Tyndall

For Celebrity Review Week, I turned the camera around on three Christian fiction authors we love and asked them to review books of their choice. Julie Lessman is here today to review Surrender the Heart by MaryLu Tyndall.


I love romantic tension, and when I pick a book to read for pleasure, MaryLu Tyndall is ALWAYS at the top of my list. As a romance author myself, I’m pretty particular because I don’t have a lot of time to read. When I do, I want an action-filled plot with lots of twists and turns and flesh-and-blood characters that grip my heart, something Ms. Tyndall delivers … every … single … time! And did I mention passion? Because MaryLu Tyndall races the pulse with some of the best in the Christian market today, both spiritually and romantically.

Surrender the Heart is the first in her “Surrender to Destiny” Series and if even possible, my favorite so far, which is saying something because everything this woman writes is a favorite of mine. From the very first line (“I would rather boil in oil than marry Noah Brenin.”), I was riveted by this engaging and fast-paced tale of a reluctant bride-to-be who becomes an unwilling stowaway aboard her “fiance’s” merchant vessel during the War of 1812. No love is lost between Marianne Denton and her equally reluctant intended Noah Brenin, but when Noah’s ship is captured by a British man-of-war vessel and its crew impressed into the British navy against their wills, the unwelcome engagement is the least of their problems. With skillful ease, Ms. Tyndall not only carries Marianne and Noah away on the heart-pounding high-seas adventure of their lives, but the reader as well, forcing all to “surrender” to her undisputable talent as a master storyteller—sweet “surrender,” indeed.

Julie's rating:

About our celebrity reviewer:

Julie Lessman is an award-winning author whose tagline of “Passion With a Purpose” underscores her intense passion for both God and romance. Winner of the 2009 ACFW Debut Author of the Year and Holt Medallion Awards of Merit for Best First Book and Long Inspirational, Julie is also the recipient of 13 Romance Writers of America awards and was voted by readers as “Borders Best of 2009 So Far: Your Favorite Fiction”.

She resides in Missouri with her husband, daughter, son and daughter-in-law and is the author of “The Daughters of Boston” series, which includes A Passion Most Pure, A Passion Redeemed, and A Passion Denied. Her “Winds of Change” series has recently released with A Hope Undaunted, which ranked #5 on Booklist’s Top 10 Inspirational Fiction for 2010. You can contact Julie through her website at


  1. I've not read any of Ms. Tyndall's books before but this review makes them sound fantastic. I'll have to give them a try!

  2. Excellent review! Julie Lessman made the book come alive in just a couple of paragraphs. I will have to check out both MaryLu Tyndall and Julie Lessman's books!

  3. Thanks for the introduction! What I like the most is that it's a historical romance.

    spamscape [at] gmail [dot] com

  4. This is the first time I've heard of this author and the book sounds like an interesting read.


  5. Thanks sooo much Julie for being part of my celebrity review week. Your excitement for this book is contagious and I can't wait to read it.

    This is your last chance to enter the $10 gift card drawing. Just leave a comment for my celebrity reviewers and I'll pick a winner this weekend!

  6. Hmmm, loved this one too!


  7. So I must admit I've never read Mary Lu Tyndall. But if Julie--who is at the top of the inspirational romance genre--raves about them, I guess I'll have to check them out! Great review! Thanks, Joy and Julie!

  8. I also have read this book and have enjoyed all of ML Tyndall's books. She is one of my top favorite authors along with Julie Lessman.


  9. I haven't heard of this book until now, but first the beautiful cover got my interest and then your review! It sounds great, I'm sure I'd enjoy iot. Thanks for drawing ym attention to another great book, really enjoyed your review :-) Thank you!

    stella.exlibris (at) gmail (dot) com

  10. Okay, wow; talk about making me want to read a book! Romantic tension... yes, please! :-)


  11. fantastic review, julie!! This is a great idea, joy!

  12. Thanks, JOY, for letting me tell you about one of my favorite authors. Not only is MaryLu an awesome writer (one of my favs!!), but she is hands-down one of the nicest people you will meet. When I met her, it felt like we were sisters ... which, come to think of it ... is not necessarily a compliment ... :/

    KACIE AND JULIE ... YES!!! You both definitely need to read MaryLu's books ... uh, and I won't complain if you read mine too ... :)

    RENEE ANN ... Thank you for your kind words, and trust me, as an author who THRIVES on romantic tension, MaryLu's books are what I pick up when I'm looking to read for pleasure.

    AMY ... THANK YOU, sweetie -- we obviously have similar taste if you like both MaryLu and me. Hey ... are you a drama queen too???? :)

    STELLA AND CHELSEA ... DO IT!! If you like romantic tension (uh, and I certainly do!), you will love MaryLu!

    Hey, CARRIE ... thanks, sweetie, and I agree -- this is an AWESOME idea, Joy!! But then it's an AWESOME blog, so no surprise!


  13. Thank you, Julie, for posting such a glowing review of my book!! And Hello everyone! Waving at old friends and new ones. Julie's right. She and I had an immediate connection. Like sisters, indeed. I love a lady with passion and Julie is one passionate lady, full of life and love and goodness. She's a blast to hang out with! Blessings to all!! MaryLu

  14. This one is already on my "to read" list but I'll have to move it up now. I've not read anything by this author so I don't know but you've really made it sound like a "must read"!
    Thank you for the review!

  15. Joy, I love your idea of celebrity reviewers, especially when favorite authors are reviewing favorite authors. The first time I read a MaryLu book I rushed to tell my crit partner about it only to find she was rushing to tell me about this great author she found...
    I loved the setting for Surrender the Heart and the link to an incredible time in American history.

    Julie writes a great review!

  16. Joy,

    This is a fantastic idea for a series! I love it! I've only read one of Mary Lu's book, but I LOVED IT and definitely want to read more. Great review Julie!!

  17. Thanks so much everyone for popping in to say hi! I've been pretty stinky about responding to comments lately b/c I'm taking a writing class right now that's eating up all my social networking time. I just want to say I appreciate you all and I'll be announcing the winner of the giftcard on Tuesday!

  18. These ladies reviewed some terrific books this week! I've read all but one and agree, they're wonderful! I love this whole week Joy! I hope you had a great day today! Happy Mother's Day!

    XOXO~ Renee


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