Surely Julie Klassen's best book yet! "The Secret of Pembrooke Park"

Cover Art

about the book....

Abigail Foster is the practical daughter. She fears she will end up a spinster, especially as she has little dowry, and the one man she thought might marry her seems to have fallen for her younger, prettier sister.

Facing financial ruin, Abigail and her father search for more affordable lodgings, until a strange solicitor arrives with an astounding offer: the use of a distant manor house abandoned for eighteen years. The Fosters journey to imposing Pembrooke Park and are startled to find it entombed as it was abruptly left: tea cups encrusted with dry tea, moth-eaten clothes in wardrobes, a doll's house left mid-play...

The handsome local curate welcomes them, but though he and his family seem acquainted with the manor's past, the only information they offer is a stern warning: Beware trespassers drawn by rumors that Pembrooke Park contains a secret room filled with treasure.

This catches Abigail's attention. Hoping to restore her family's finances--and her dowry--Abigail looks for this supposed treasure. But eerie sounds at night and footprints in the dust reveal she isn't the only one secretly searching the house.

Then Abigail begins receiving anonymous letters, containing clues about the hidden room and startling discoveries about the past.

As old friends and new foes come calling at Pembrooke Park, secrets come to light. Will Abigail find the treasure and love she seeks...or very real danger?

my review...

I knew within only a few pages that I was in for a real treat with "The Secret of Pembrooke Park". The writing is incredible, and I simply couldn't put the book down as the mystery built and the secrets began to be revealed. Julie Klassen has done a remarkable job of capturing the historical flavour of the Regency time period, revealing the snobbery between the classes, the emphasis placed on girls marrying well, the societal expectations of propriety. The characters are full of life and the story is carried along by their witty dialogue. Readers are sure to love the capable Abigail, who presents as having a deep strength - which she does have! - and yet who has a very vulnerable side as well, viewing herself through critical eyes that fail to see the inner and outer beauty she has to offer the world. I love the role she plays in this story, helping to reveal the truth of the tragedy of what happened in the past at Pembrooke Park, and serving to move people from darkness to light. This book has a beautiful theme of reconciliation, both between people and our gracious God, and also between each other.  And I felt that this story had just the right touch of romance, with a love story that readers of all types will enjoy as they watch it unfold across the pages. I'm sure that readers will be rooting for their favourite characters and that not everyone will agree on just who should be falling in love with whom in this story! The ending, of course, is all one could hope for in a good book. I hated to see the final page arrive!

I am not exaggerating when I say that this is Klassen's best book to date. The intrigue and suspense, the wonderful historical details, and the likable characters will be sure to leave a smile on your face. 5 out of 5 stars.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

about the author....

Julie KlassenJulie Klassen loves all things Jane--Jane Eyreand Jane Austen. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Julie worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. She has won three Christy Awards in the Historical Romance category for The Silent Governess (2010), The Girl in the Gatehouse (2011), and The Maid of Fairbourne Hall (2012). Julie and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota. Learn more about Julie and her books at