I have to admit that this novel started out very slowly for me. I have truly enjoyed many books by this author in the past, so I felt that I needed to persevere and see if the story picked up for me. I am very glad that I did so! The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill was beautifully written and I found that I connected with the story and events once I passed that halfway mark.
Although it took me awhile to get the feel for the community and to begin to care about the people who lived there, I really enjoyed how things began to develop. I now find myself very invested in these characters! There were a few different possible romantic interests woven gently through the story. The author did a great job of keeping me guessing about how certain romances would progress. I am looking forward to returning to this community and seeing what is happening in the lives of certain characters in book two.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
On a rise overlooking the Wiltshire countryside stands the village of Ivy Hill. Its coaching inn, The Bell, is its lifeblood–along with the coach lines that stop there daily, bringing news, mail, travelers, and much-needed trade.
Jane Bell lives on the edge of the inn property. She had been a genteel lady until she married the charming innkeeper who promised she would never have to work in his family’s inn. But when he dies under mysterious circumstances, Jane finds herself The Bell’s owner, and worse, she has three months to pay a large loan or lose the place.
Feeling reluctant and ill-equipped, Jane is tempted to abandon her husband’s legacy and return to her former life of ease. However, she soon realizes there is more at stake than her comfort. But who can she trust to help her? Her resentful mother-in-law? Her husband’s brother, who wanted the inn for himself? Or the handsome newcomer with secret plans of his own . . . ?
With pressure mounting from the bank, Jane struggles to win over naysayers and turn the place around. Can Jane bring new life to the inn, and to her heart as well?
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
I worked in publishing for sixteen years (first in advertising, then as a fiction editor) and now write full time. Three of my books, The Maid of Fairbourne Hall, The Girl in the Gatehouse, and The Silent Governess have won the Christy Award for Historical Romance. The Maid of Fairbourne Hall and The Girl in the Gatehouse also won a Midwest Book Award and The Silent Governess was a finalist in Romance Writers of America’s RITA awards.
I graduated from the University of Illinois and enjoy travel, research, BBC period dramas, long hikes, short naps, and coffee with friends. My husband and I have two sons and live near St. Paul, Minnesota.