Reviewed by Vera Pereskokova
A talented artist, 19-year-old Claire Laurent dreams about creating the type of masterpieces that others will admire. But her father channels her talent in another direction and insists she forge paintings for his New Orleans art gallery. When angry customers come knocking, Claire is forced to flee to Nashville and sees an opportunity to escape her family legacy once and for all.
Homeless and without a penny to her name, Claire overhears about an open position with one of Nashville’s – and perhaps the entire country’s – wealthiest residents, Adelicia Acklen. Arriving at the stunning Belmont Mansion, Claire convinces Adelicia to give her a chance, but fears her past is never too far behind.
Sutton Monroe lost his father and family fortune to the Civil War, but found some success as a local attorney. As the one to take care of Adelicia’s legal and financial matters, he is initially distrustful of Claire’s intentions. Is she who she says she is, or are there some ulterior motives behind her arrival at Belmont? In no time, however, he is won over by Claire’s enthusiasm and innocence, and enjoys her companionship more than he cares to admit.
When Sutton takes on the case of disgruntled art buyers and seeks to expose an art forgery ring, he has no idea it might cost him the woman he has come to love.
A Lasting Impression is the first book in the Belmont Mansion series, and my first encounter with the author Tamera Alexander. As a huge fan of Gone with the Wind, I was excited to read a novel set in a similar place and time, and A Lasting Impression did not disappoint. Alexander’s thorough research into the time period is evident on every page – she spent two years researching and writing the book – and the historical basis gives the fictional characters and events more meaning and gravity.
While most of the characters and events described in A Lasting Impression are fictional, Adelicia Acklen was a real person and her resplendent Belmont Mansion is today one of Nashville’s biggest tourist attractions (see photo on the left). I had the pleasure of chatting with Alexander about her visit to Belmont, and look forward to exploring the mansion myself some day.
At 430 pages, A Lasting Impression seems like quite the reading investment, but the pages fly by. Claire is an admirable character and it’s easy to empathize with her desire to make a better life for herself while being weighed down by the unfortunate choices of her father. Her connection with Sutton is undeniable, and although there’s no “bodice-ripping” like action in this Christian fiction book, their romance is sweet and leaves the reader to imagine the rest.
Kindle Fire Giveaway and Facebook Party from Tamera Alexander!
While Tamera and her book, A Lasting Impression, are traveling across the country virtually (with a few international stops as well!), she will be hosting a Kindle Fire Giveaway(11/4 – 11/15) and preparing for a lavish Southern-Style Facebook Party (11/15) (dripping with hospitality, of course). She will be giving away Southern Food Baskets, books, and an array of other fabulous freebies! Don’t miss a minute of the fun. Swoon!
Read what the reviewers are saying here.
One grand prize winner will receive:
A Brand New Kindle Fire (shipped as soon as it releases)
A copy of A Lasting Impression and 3 other special books Tamera wants you to have (for Kindle)
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends at noon on November 15th. Winner will be announced at A Lasting Impression Facebook Party on the 15th.
Don’t miss a moment of the fun. RSVP today and tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER. Hope to see you on the 15th!