Utterly satisfying: "The Painter's Daughter" by Julie Klassen

Cover Art

about the book....

Sophie Dupont assists her father in his studio, keeping her own artwork out of sight. In private, she paints the picturesque north Devon coast, popular with artists--including handsome Wesley Overtree, who seems more interested in Sophie than the landscape. 

Captain Stephen Overtree is accustomed to taking on his brother Wesley's responsibilities. Near the end of his leave, he is sent to find his brother and bring him home. Upon reaching Devonshire, however, Stephen is stunned to learn Wesley has sailed for Italy and left his host's daughter in serious trouble. 

Stephen feels duty-bound to act, and strangely protective of the young lady, who somehow seems familiar. Wanting to make some recompense for his own past failings as well as his brother's, Stephen proposes to Miss Dupont. He does not offer love, but marriage "in name only" to save her from scandal. If he dies in battle, as he fears, she will at least be a respectable widow.

Desperate for a way to escape her predicament, Sophie finds herself torn between her first love and this brooding man she barely knows. Dare she wait for Wesley to return? Or should she elope with the captain and pray she doesn't come to regret it?

my review....

Julie Klassen offers up an entertaining historical novel in "The Painter's Daughter", one with plenty of mystery and unexpected moments. She depicts her characters with a sure hand, creating a winning heroine in Sophie Dupont, a worthy counterpart in Captain Stephen Overtree, and a man I truly did not like in Stephen's brother Wesley. Julie's main characters are flawed, yet redeemed by grace, and she perfectly captures the moral tone of the day as people learn of the mistake Sophie and Welsey have made and the predicament Sophie finds herself in. Having a brother myself, I tried to imagine what it would be like to have a brother like Wesley, and was very thankful that I do not!

As the story progressed, I found myself pondering the similarities between society back in Sophie's day, with society today, and was saddened to realize that scores of men today continue to shirk duty and honour much like Wesley did. As back then, our culture sees far too few Stephen like men who stand up to be the kind of men God wants us to be. While no means perfect, Stephen's heart of faith and his real integrity set quite the example for what a man should be like. As usual with a Klassen novel, I did not find the romance to be of a kind that would deter a male reader from enjoying this novel. Add in the unexpected secrets and reveals that take place during the story, and you have a
novel that any reader is sure to enjoy.

Any time I pick up a book from Julie Klassen, I know I am in for a satisfying read. "The Painter's Daughter" is another keeper from a talented author, and I give this novel a strong rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

 about the author....

Julie Klassen
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.

Ready to buy?