Winter is the time of year when I like to curl up in a comfy chair with a blanket and read books. I just finished a terrific book that I would like to share with you.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading the endearing story of Jane Fairmont Bell, a young widow, who is the central character in the first book of a trilogy, Tales from Ivy Hill, by Julie Klassen. Set in the early 1800’s when coaching inns were the place for people to rest along their journey and get a meal or refreshments, Jane is the proprietor of an inn that her husband had left to her upon his death. Being at a disadvantage since her husband did not include her in the operations of the inn, Jane realizes that she is in risk of losing it due to mismanagement and untold secrets from her husband’s past.
Jane is uncertain as to what to do and certainly needs help with managing and running the inn if she is going to keep it. Otherwise, not only will she lose her income, but also her home. Who can she trust to help her? Will her brother-in-law with a shady past be someone that she can lean upon or does he have ulterior motives? Can Jane put aside her feelings of inferiority to ask for her mother-in-law’s help? What about the mysterious stablehand who seems to know much more than just about horses? Help comes from a variety of unexpected sources that make this story so interesting.
I was sad when the book ended because I wanted to find out what was going to happen to Jane and the people of the village where she lives. One of my tests of a great book is if I am still thinking about the book several days later and this was definitely the case with The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill. I am looking forward to reading the next installment of her trilogy.
Julie Klassen loves all things Jane–Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. She worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. Three of her novels have won the Christy Award for Historical Romance. Her book, The Silent Governess, was also a finalist in the Minnesota Book Awards, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year Awards, and Romance Writers of America’s RITA Awards. Julie is a graduate of the University of Illinois. She and her husband have two sons and live near St. Paul, Minnesota. Visit http://www.julieklassen.com for more information.
I have received a free copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated in any other way. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations.