The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill #1
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Bethany House / 2016 / Paperback
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The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill #1

Bethany House / 2016 / Paperback

Expected to ship on or about 12/19/17.
Email me when this product is available.
Stock No: WW218132
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  • In This Series (2)
In This Series (2)
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Product Description

Set in 1820 in the small village of Ivy Hill, England, is The Bell, a coaching inn. Jane finally wakes up after a year of mourning over her husband’s death, when the bank informs her that the loan her late husband had taken out is greatly overdue. She now has three months to prove that she can make The Bell profitable, or the bank will be forced to sell it. Jane now has a purpose and does the best she can do to save the inn. 

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 448
Vendor: Bethany House
Publication Date: 2016
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0764218131
ISBN-13: 9780764218132
Series: Tales From Ivy Hill

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Publisher's Description

First Series from Bestselling Author Julie Klassen!

The lifeblood of the Wiltshire village of Ivy Hill is its coaching inn, The Bell. But when the innkeeper dies suddenly, his genteel wife, Jane Bell, becomes the reluctant owner. Jane has no notion of how to run a business. However, with the town's livelihood at stake and a large loan due, she must find a way to bring new life to the inn.

Despite their strained relationship, Jane turns to her resentful mother-in-law, Thora, for help. Formerly mistress of The Bell, Thora is struggling to find her place in the world. As she and Jane work together, they form a measure of trust, and Thora's wounded heart begins to heal. When she encounters two men from her past, she sees them--and her future--in a different light.

With pressure mounting from the bank, Jane employs innovative methods to turn the inn around, and puzzles over the intentions of several men who seem to have a vested interest in the place. Will her efforts be enough to save The Bell? And will Thora embrace the possibility of a second chance at love?

Author Bio

JULIE KLASSEN loves all things Jane--Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Julie worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full-time. Three of her books, The Silent Governess, The Girl in the Gatehouse, and The Maid of Fairbourne Hall, have won the Christy Award for Historical Romance. The Secret of Pembrooke Park was honored with the Minnesota Book Award for genre fiction. Julie has also won the Midwest Book Award and Christian Retailing's BEST Award, and has been a finalist in the Romance Writers of America's RITA Awards and ACFW's Carol Awards. Julie and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota. For more information, visit www.julieklassen.com.

Product Reviews

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  1. hes7
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill
    November 13, 2017
    hes7
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    A book from Julie Klassen never disappoints me. As I read The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill, I fell in love with the characters, the community that surrounds them, and the quaint and cozy inn setting. Every aspect feels so warm and transporting and captivating, making this a perfect book to curl up with and get lost in on a chilly day. Klassen skillfully weaves together three character perspectives to tell this charming historical story and sets it up perfectly for the continuation of the series (which Im really excited to read!). For fans of Julie Klassen and readers of historical fiction, I highly recommend The Innkeeper of Ivy HillI loved it!

    Thanks to Bethany House, I received a copy of The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill and the opportunity to provide an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review, and all the opinions I have expressed are my own.
  2. alwaysreading
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Charming
    November 6, 2017
    alwaysreading
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    The Inn Keeper of Ivy Hill

    The Inn Keeper of Ivy Hill is the first book in Julie Klassen first ever series, Tales from Ivy Hill.

    Jane Bell has spent the last year mourning the sudden death of her husband. Now the time has come and she must decide where she sell the Inn or take charge of it.

    Thora Bell, Jane's mother-in-law never approved of her son's wife, and now she is hearing rumors that the inn is not doing well. She is a hard woman used to making hard decisions. When she arrives at The Bell Inn she finds that the Inn is barley functioning, so she attempts to regain her position as mistress. What she fails to take into account is Jane's newfound strength and determination.

    For the first few chapters both Jane and Thora really annoyed me. Jane with her helplessness and Thora with her better than everyone attitude, but as the story progressed both women take major step in their personal growth, especially learning to leave the past in the past. They gradually learn how to trust each other and how to work together to save the family's legacy.

    Although the central story revolves Jane and Thora, the author creates a magnificent secondary cast of characters that help bring the story to life. They are diversely written and have realistic personalities that added great depth to the book. The story is well written and engaging. It gives us a look at working life in the early 1800's. The author did a great job of researching Inn's of the period, how they worked. I found it fascinating to learn about who did what especially the workings of the stables.

    This book will sweep you away. It will grab your attention and not let you go. You will need to know what is on the next page.

    I would have like to see more emphasis on God in the book, but Julie Klassen always delivers a great read.
  3. theLadyLeigh
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Best read this year to date!
    June 30, 2017
    theLadyLeigh
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Thora Bell was born, raised, and brought up her family in the coaching-inn The Bell- only to see her son die suddenly and pass the family business on to his gentlewoman wife, Jane Bell- who has seemingly never taken in interest in the inn. Jane is forced to take in interest however when she finds that her husband has left a massive loan on the books- and the bank is long past being repaid! With their livelihood, past memories, and future security on the line Jane and Thora must find a way to work together and to being the inn back to its former glory and pay off the debt before they are left with nothing!

    Two women from two very different backgrounds and lives are the highlight of The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill! I cannot remember anytime recently seeing or reading a book where the two main characters were woman of different generations and I loved seeing it here!

    Thora is a working woman and always has been. She is steeped and invested in her family business and known for her knowledgeable running of the inn and for her sharply honest tongue. Jane is born to a life of privilege that lies far in the past with both of her parents dead and her family home being left to ruins. She is not accustomed to the life shes been thrust into since her husbands passing but that doesnt mean that she doesnt have the mind for it, or the strong will to survive! Together Thora and Jane make an unlikely pair, but a pair that works together the harder the circumstances that surround them become!

    Something I thought was really interesting about this book was the look it gave to woman working in the regency era. This isnt a book that is puffed up on a whirlwind romance in the halls of Baths best balls; it is an honest look at the working class of the countryside. Women are and always have been the backbone of farm and country industry. It was neat to learn about the strong connections of how woman and business in these small towns are truly dependent on each other and work to help each other.

    Another thing I liked about this book is that it isnt primarily a romance novel. There is certainly no end of potential suitors for both of the woman in this book but it never overtakes and overshadows the main conflict of the inns future. Both storylines complement each other but they do not fight each other for the spotlight. With this being the first installment of Klassens first series I was also rather delighted that this book felt like returning to the BBCs Cranford and getting bits and pieces of all the lives of everyone in the village! I will look forward to the story continuing to unfold and for more to be revealed about all of the characters as the series progresses!

    I would highly recommend this book to anyone- even those that have never tried a regency set book before! I was very happy reading this and am looking forward to the end of the year when the next installment will be released!

    Final Rating: 5
  4. Moonpie
    PRYOR
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    A GREAT READ!
    March 22, 2017
    Moonpie
    PRYOR
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I know when I open one of Ms. Klassens books I can be sure I am in for a good read! This novel is proof again! The setting is Wiltshire, England, 1820. Jane was suddenly widowed a year ago when her husband was in an accident. He ran a family inn named, the Bell. She had no part in the business but thanks to the laws, suddenly finds herself proprietor and owner. She knows nothing about running such an establishment and has no desire to. The Inn means everything to her mother-in-law, Thora Bell, as it belonged to her parents. Thora moves back to the Bell in hopes of helping out. To make a sticky situation even worse, Thora has never really liked her daughter-in-law. Her brother-in-law, Patrick, also resides there and has his own agenda for the Bell. The inn is in great need of repairs and deep in debt. At first she feels she has no choice but to manage the inn has she has no other means of income. Later she realizes that is about more than just her, and the success of it affects many lives. I overwhelmed for Jane in all she had to learn and do. I found it very interesting the workings and running such a business in that era, it was hard! Definitely not like our Holiday Inns now!

    She sets goals to bring new life to the business but not without opposition from some. Without finances this certainly seems impossible. I admired Janes perseverance even in the face of resistance and insurmountable odds. There are mysteries concerning her husbands death she wants to solve in addition to her mounting responsibilities.

    The book has a wonderful cast of complex characters that the author brings to life in detail and personality. This makes it a very in-depth story. There are many surprises, twists and turns on different levels and within each characters life. I enjoyed the book and look forward to the next sequel.

    I was provided a review copy of this book by Bethany House Publishers, with no expectation of a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.
  5. CozyWriter'sDen
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    Beautiful
    March 17, 2017
    CozyWriter'sDen
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    The Inkeeper of Ivy Hill is a well written book. What do I mean by that? Well, the grammar is neat and organized and the style is very easy to read but not too simplistic. The dialogue flows easily and well, and one can imagine a person actually using such language. The descriptions are enough to give you a good mental picture of the scenes but they are not long enough to bore. The characters are interesting, varied, and evolve through the story. There were no 'glitchy' phrases or sections that left me lurching over the words. This, to me, is what encompasses a well written novel.

    I really enjoyed the slow, budding romances and tentative relationships of the four main ladies in this novel. Missy, Rachel, Thora, and of course, Jane. All the girls are so different, but they are alike in that life has not been kind to them. Missy's plain face has kept the shallow young men away, and it seems as she gets older that her chances of meeting a man who can see into her beautiful soul are fading away. Rachel, a lady of note, is reduced to nothing but her valise when her father dies and leaves their estate to a distant relative. Thora, married once for love and then left with nothing, is resolute in never wanting to be shackled to a man again. And lastly, sweet Jane. A gentle lady who ends up married to an innkeeper, and finds herself widowed not many years later, now has to struggle for her own survival against great odds.

    This novel weaves a wonderful story of perseverance and tentative love as these four women team together to try and get by in a society that favours men in business and does not encourage entrepreneurship or independence in women. I found the plot to be simplistic, but the story did not suffer for it. The characters were vividly full of life; I eagerly anticipate the next novel in a desire to find out what happens to these industrious women.

    Lastly, there are strong faith components in this book - not just in statement but in the actions of the women. Themes of forgiveness, self-control, and compassion run high.

    Thank-you to Graf Martin Communications and Baker Publishing House for a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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