Tag Archives: Julie Klassen

The Girl in the Gatehouse by Julie Klassen

The Girl in the Gatehouse cover imageTitle: The Girl in the Gatehouse

Author: Julie Klassen

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

Book Description:

Mariah Aubrey lives in seclusion with her secrets. Will an ambitious captain uncover her identity… and her hidden past?

Banished from the only home she’s ever known, Mariah Aubrey hides herself away in an abandoned gatehouse on a distant relative’s estate. There she supports herself and her loyal servant the only way she knows how—by writing novels in secret.

When Captain Matthew Bryant leases the estate, he is intrigued by the beautiful girl in the gatehouse. But there are many things he doesn’t know about this beguiling outcast. Will he risk his plans—and his heart—for a woman shadowed by scandal?

Intriguing, mysterious, and romantic, The Girl in the Gatehouse takes readers inside the life of a secret authoress at a time when novel-writing was considered improper for ladies and the smallest hint of impropriety could change a woman’s life forever.

Review:

With one devastating mistake, Miss Mariah Aubrey ruined her reputation and her hope of ever marrying a respectable man. Cast out by her family, she must now rely on the generosity of her aunt for a place to live — the abandoned gatehouse on the aunt’s estate. The need for an income causes Mariah to seek publication for her novel manuscripts, which would give her father another reason to disapprove of her should he find out.

Captain Matthew Bryant is determined to win the hand of the young lady who rejected him once before. While he may not have been born into a society family, his successful career in the Royal Navy and the prize money he received through it should be enough to finally convince both the woman and her father that Matthew is worthy of her. The girl living in the gatehouse of the estate he had leased, however, intrigues him and may threaten his ability to win the young lady he is determined to impress.

Ms. Klassen brings this tale to life with a colorful cast of characters, each of whom have their own secrets and add flavor to the story. Several subplots are woven throughout the book, such as the mysterious man who walks the poorhouse roof, but each adds to the conflict and motivation of the characters. Although this is a Christian novel, the Christian themes — such as forgiveness and loving your neighbors — are so well integrated into the story that they are inconspicuous much of the time.

All in all, The Girl in the Gatehouse is a wonderful story I would highly recommend to anyone who enjoys Regency-era romance or historical fiction.

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The Silent Governess by Julie Klassen

The Silent Governess cover artTitle: The Silent Governess

Author: Julie Klassen

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

Book Description:

Olivia Keene is fleeing her own secret. She never intended to overhear his.

But now that she has, what is Lord Bradley to do with her? He cannot let her go, for were the truth to get out, he would lose everything–his reputation, his inheritance, his very home.

He gives Miss Keene little choice but to accept a post at Brightwell Court, where he can make certain she does not spread what she heard. Keeping an eye on the young woman as she cares for the children, he finds himself drawn to her, even as he struggles against the growing attraction. The clever Miss Keene is definitely hiding something.

Moving, mysterious, and romantic, The Silent Governess takes readers inside the intriguing life of a nineteenth-century governess in an English manor house where all is not as it appears.

Review:

The Silent Governess is a wonderful story of love and trust, misunderstandings and secrets set in Regency era England. As Olivia Keene seeks to put as much distance as possible between herself and the terrible secret she hopes to leave behind, she inadvertently eavesdrops on a conversation between Lord Bradley and his father, the Earl of Brightwell, and learns Lord Bradley has a dangerous secret of his own. An unfortunate mistake leads to a throat injury that temporarily renders Miss Keene mute. Lord Bradley, fearing Miss Keene will reveal his secret either in writing or once she regains the ability to speak, gives her no choice but to accept a post as under nurse on his estate.

It doesn’t take long for the reader to learn someone is threatening to reveal Lord Bradley’s secret. The mystery of who is behind the plot against him carries throughout much of the book, as does Miss Keene’s fear of her own secret being revealed. Another theme running through the book is the attraction between Lord Bradley and Miss Keene. Since a relationship between a lord and a servant is not a viable option, they both must fight their feelings. An element of faith is intertwined with the story, and occasional conversations with the vicar prod everyone in the right direction.

A well-developed cast of secondary characters, including a crusty old gamekeeper; a wonderful command of Regency-era English; and the right amount of description bring this story to life. Julie Klassen has done an amazing job of giving readers a glimpse back in time to the difficulties faced by the different classes in early 1800s England. I highly recommend The Silent Governess for anyone who enjoys historical fiction.

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Filed under Bethany House Publishers, Christian, Fiction, Historical, Romance