Monday, March 29, 2021

NBTM Virtual Book Tour + #Giveaway: The Salty Rose by Beth Caruso @oneofwindsor @GoddessFish

The Salty Rose

by Beth M. Caruso

GENRE: Historical Fiction


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.


Marie. Enough of this! Go roll out another barrel to tap. We are already out. These ravenous sailors will drink us dry with their unending thirst. And, think about minding your manners with the wealthy man at the window table,” Mr. Couwenhoven scolded me as he glared in the man’s direction.

The tavern was humming with activity, encased in a cloud of smoke and overflowing with not only beer but also boisterous laughter that night.

I’d rebuffed a lecherous traveler again. My mistake was that he was a repeat customer and one who had a little wealth to spread around.

What shall I do? Let the letch grab me? You ask too much of me,” I retorted. “Certainly, you understand I must protect myself against some of these animals,” I emphasized.

Mr. Van Couwenhoven was a hideous man, only thinking of his coin.

Listen to me quite well, you little Walloon,” he retorted as his chubby face reddened with anger. “I’m giving you a chance to have a living, but you will end mine if you are not a little more lenient with my good customers! I don’t care if you unleash that sharp tongue of yours with the foolish rogue sailors who are too drunk to remember what you say, but you will not chase away my better clientele. You understand me? Be polite!” he yelled.

I looked at Van Couwenhoven’s son, Pieter, nodding as he raised his eyebrows at me, motioning to the back.

Yes. For you, I can be ever so lenient,” I said under my breath, staring into Pieter’s bright blue eyes.

My heart raced a little at the chance to meet Pieter in the back. It was hard for me to take my eyes off his handsome cherub-like face, a face that hid the personality of a little rascal.

Mr. Van Couwenhoven ordered me to the storeroom one more time, not wanting to lose business.

Marie, I said to go get another barrel of beer from the back. Do as I say!” Mr. Van Couwenhoven ordered me.

As mad as he was, he still liked me. It was worse when his wife was around too. The husband was greedy but only resented me if I got in the way of profits. His wife was another story. I knew she’d despise me once she got wind of my budding romance with her son. 

Interview with Beth M Caruso

What made you want to become a writer?

I’ve always been interested in a creative outlet such as writing and often dreamt about writing historical novels because of my love of history. Only after a remarkable discovery unfolded shortly after moving to Windsor, Connecticut, did I commit fully to becoming a writer. It all started when my neighbor, Joan, casually brought up the fact that the townspeople of early Windsor had accused Alice ‘Alse’ Young of witchcraft during a deadly epidemic. Alice Young had become the first person to hang for witchcraft in the American colonies on May 26th, 1647. I was shocked and outraged never having heard of Alice or her plight that took place forty-five years before the Salem trials even began—the spark that started all of them! I needed to know more about what happened to Alice and embarked on a years-long effort to research the events that led to her death. What I discovered evolved into a remarkable narrative that became my first book, One of Windsor: The Untold Story of America’s First Witch Hanging.

What inspired you to write The Salty Rose: Alchemists, Witches & A Tapper In New Amsterdam?

I came across the story of another little-known female troublemaker in early colonial America, tavern keeper Marie du Trieux, a great grandmother in my husband’s family tree. She lived in the colony of New Netherland and had quite a colorful reputation. At the same time, I wanted to explore what happened to one of the main characters in One of Windsor after Alice Young’s death and the trajectory of the Connecticut Witch Trials. These trials culminated in the Hartford Witch Panic. With both research from genealogy and history not used in One of Windsor, I was able to create a story about both Marie du Trieux and her contemporary counterpart in New England, trader John Tinker, the devastated cousin of Alice Young. Their stories started out separately but there was plenty of opportunity to merge them. The cover of The Salty Rose shows the exact moment when they meet each other outside of Marie’s tavern in New Amsterdam.

Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in The Salty Rose?

Marie du Trieux, the female protagonist, is grounded and practical, speaks her mind, gets in trouble but has a truly generous heart. John Tinker, trader, also works closely with John Winthrop Jr., his mentor in alchemy and his boss in the affairs of Connecticut Colony. Tinker is practical like Marie and helps propel his mentor’s dreams into reality. Marie meets John Tinker through trade with her husband and through him becomes an important connection for Winthrop Jr. in the colony of New Netherland. Marie and John Tinker become friends and together attempt to free a Dutch woman, Judith Varlet, accused of witchcraft in Hartford, Connecticut in 1662.

John Winthrop Jr. is a spiritually-minded Puritan of more esoteric pursuits than most, chiefly alchemy. Despite his generosity in healing the sick of Connecticut, pursuing altruistic spiritual goals, and standing up for witch trial victims, he fails to see some of the most abhorrent practices of his own era. These characters are all personable and want life to improve for people in general even though they come from drastically different strata in life and have contrasting personalities as well.

You know I think we all have a favorite author. Who is your favorite author and why?

It’s impossible for me to choose just one. There are so many great authors out there, some known and some still waiting to be discovered. For the genre of historical fiction, I love Anya Seton who integrates historical details skillfully in a great story such as The Winthrop Woman. As far as general literature, I also love the work of The Secret Life of Bees author, Sue Monk Kidd, whose focus on family and spirituality draws me in. I also admire the pertinent social commentary of author Barbara Kingsolver who weaves great storytelling with profound insight into the human condition. I also have many favorite writers in the genre of Magical Realism, especially Jorge Luis Borges, an Argentinian whose short stories of labyrinths of changing reality are both clever and engaging. His fantastical work also paved the way for some of my other favorite South American writers of this genre including Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Isabel Allende.

Can you tell us a little bit about your next books or what you have planned for the future?

My current work in progress is the legend of a family kidnapping that took place among Sicilian immigrants in the early twentieth century. I’m learning Italian and planning to visit Sicily for research when the current pandemic eases. I’m also interested in exploring writing in other genres such as paranormal and currently have an outline for a ghost story.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

The research into another era is always exciting to me, as was carrying forward the story of what became of John Tinker from One of Windsor. Uncovering the life of Marie du Trieux and the little-known role of women in keeping the peace in New Amsterdam before its takeover by the English was very interesting. Equally, I enjoyed delving deep into the ancient spiritual movement of alchemy as it was presented in seventeenth century colonial America.

I thank you for spending this time at The Avid Reader today. I hope you enjoyed this information about me and The Salty Rose.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Award-winning author, Beth M. Caruso, is passionate to discover and convey important and interesting stories of women from earlier times. She recently won the literary prize in Genre Fiction (2020) from IPNE (Independent Publishers of New England) for her most recent novel The Salty Rose: Alchemists, Witches & A Tapper In New Amsterdam (2019). The Salty Rose is Beth’s second historical novel and explores alchemy in early colonial times, an insider’s view of the takeover of the Dutch colony of New Netherland, and the Hartford Witch Panic with information she gathered from previous and ongoing research. Beth’s first historical novel is One of Windsor: The Untold Story of America’s First Witch Hanging (2015), a novel that tells the tale of Alice ‘Alse’ Young and the beginnings of the colonial witch trials. She based the story on original research she did by exploring early primary sources such as early Windsor land records, vital statistics, and other documents. She lives in Connecticut with her family. Beth kayaks and gardens to unwind.

Website ~ Email ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

Buy Links:

Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble


$25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC

Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning.


Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thanks for hosting!

Beth M Caruso said...

Thanks so much for hosting me on the Salty Rose tour!

Victoria Alexander said...

Great post, I enjoyed reading it.

peg42 said...

Sounds like a great book.

Ann Fantom said...

I like the cover. It has cute artwork.

abfantom at yahoo dot com

zelda said...

thank you for the chance to win

Sherry said...

I love the excerpt and think the book sound really good.

Thomas Gibson said...

Nice cover and excerpt!

Delilah Martin said...

The book sounds wonderful!

Debbi Wellenstein said...

I liked the excerpt. Thanks for the giveaway!

clc408 said...

The excerpt is interesting. Thank you for sharing it.

Barbara Montag said...

Thank you for introducing this new book to me.

PAIGE said...

I love historical fiction.Good work.

Barbara Montag said...

Do you ever use real life experiences to write your books?

Barbara Montag said...

Wishing you a Happy Easter!

Daniel M said...

sounds like a fun one

Barbara Montag said...

Thank you for a great read!

Barbara Montag said...

Since it is Easter & plans got cancelled, I am treating myself and enjoying some extra reading.

Barbara Montag said...

About how long does it take you to write a book?

Barbara Montag said...

Tweeted this -

Barbara Montag said...

Shared on Twitter again today -

Barbara Montag said...

One more tweet for this read -

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