If you have followed my book bogs at all, you should know by now that one of my favorite things is character interviews. So I have a treat for you today! Beth M. Caruso is here with a conversation with Marie de Trieux, the heroine from her book The Salty Rose. You'll also be able to read an excerpt before you download your own copy. Be sure to follow the tour and leave your questions and comments along the way. Best of luck in the giveaway!
Marie du Trieux, a tavern keeper with a salty tongue and a heart of gold, struggles as she navigates love and loss, Native wars, and possible banishment by authorities in the unruly trading port of New Amsterdam, an outpost of the Dutch West India Company.
In New England, John Tinker, merchant and assistant to a renowned alchemist and eventual leader of Connecticut Colony, must come to terms with a family tragedy of dark proportions, all the while supporting his mentor’s secret quest to find the Northwest Passage, a desired trading route purported to mystically unite the East with the West.
As the lives of Marie and John become intertwined through friendship and trade, a search for justice of a Dutch woman accused of witchcraft in Hartford puts them on a collision course affecting not only their own destinies but also the fate of colonial America.
Pieter came to New Amsterdam with his father and mother about six years after I arrived in the Dutch colony with my family. They had a little more clout than us Walloons and more money too. His mother never really liked me. She thought I was unrefined. Only briefly having known the culture of Leiden and Amsterdam in my early years, most of my formative years were spent being raised like the Natives we first encountered on Manhattan. It was no wonder I didn’t carry myself like the ladies fresh off the ships from Holland. But I had true grit. Why would a man want refinement when strength, endurance, and flexibility were more useful qualities here in the rowdy Dutch colony?
Eventually, his mother saw the attraction between us. I don’t think his parents liked it that he had a fancy for me. They thought they were much better than my family of Walloons. Their feelings did not stop our passions. The closeness of the tavern nearly every day and night made Pieter and me became all the more infatuated. His mother, an old scold, was not pleased when we flirted, but her glare couldn’t stop us. After all, Papa told me to have fun. Pieter and I were both in our early twenties and ready for an adventurous tryst. It never took us too far from the tavern.
Today, we’re in 1658, talking to Marie du Trieux from Beth M Caruso’s novel, The Salty Rose: Alchemists, Witches & A Tapper In New Amsterdam.
Thank you for your interview, Marie du Trieux. How old are you and what do you do for a living?
I am forty years old. I own and run a tavern with my husband Jan Peek in the Dutch settlement of New Amsterdam. In your day, the city is called New York.
Can you tell us about one of your most distinguishable features?
What would I love the most about you?
I do not hesitate to speak my mind. I don’t care who you are or what you do, just treat me respectfully and we will have no problems.
What would I hate the most about you?
Where do you go when you are angry?
What is your greatest fear?
I fear separation from my family again.
Do you think the author portrayed you accurately?
Yes. She sensed me. I was very happy about it since her husband and children are my great grandchildren. We have a connection.
What is your idea of a perfect day?
My perfect day is a profitable one at my tavern. Jan, my beloved husband, is home and not out trading in the wilderness. Our favorite fiddler friend comes to play old Walloon songs at the tavern and we dance for hours. Everyone is merry and no one wants to make trouble, especially the sheriff.
Do you have children?
Yes, I have several. Nine altogether. The first son is an explorer and Native interpreter based in Beverwyck (your present-day Albany). Another one wants to run a bar near Fort Orange. Others are still with me but sadly, I lost a daughter when she was only three.
What is your most treasured possession?
My most treasured possessions are my rose bushes, the native sea roses that grow around my tavern. I am extremely protective of them. Hurting or destroying them is a sure way to cross me and get banned from my tavern forever.
If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, what would you do today?
I’d have a family day, spending time with Jan visiting one of the trading posts slightly up the Hudson. Then, in the evening, I’d open the tavern only to friends and family for dinner and merriment one last time.
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