Monday, March 2, 2015

The Secret of Pembrooke Park by Julie Klassen (Review and Giveaway Details)



I have found a new favorite author, Julie Klassen.  I read that Klassen’s novels are a combination of Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, Victoria Holt, and Daphne Du Maurier.  That is a pretty high standard to achieve, but Klassen has achieved it. I reviewed The Secret of Pembrooke Park as part of a blog tour and I am so happy I did.  It is a wonderful novel and very enjoyable.

Abigail Foster is the older, plainer, practical daughter.  She has loved her friend Gilbert since childhood, but she discovers that he is taken more with her younger, beautiful sister, Louisa.  Putting disappointment aside, Abigail helps her father when they lose their fortune due to a banking collapse.  When a distant relative sends them an offer to live in the Pembrooke Park estate for very little outlay, it seems too good to be true.  When Abigail and her father arrive to get the estate ready, they make quite a few discoveries.  Pembrooke Park has not been lived in for almost twenty years and the locals have rumors of murder, tragedy, and secret treasure associated with the place.  Abigail meets and befriends the handsome local curate William Chapman and his sister Leah, but she can’t help feeling that there is a mystery involving these too as well.  Will Abigail discover the mystery of Pembrooke Park?

I loved so much about this novel.  The hints of Austen that were throughout were wonderful for an Austen fan to discover and enjoy.  For instance, Abigail’s father lost his fortune through investing in Henry Austen’s bank.  Henry was Jane Austen’s brother and his bank collapse caused much Austen family turmoil.  I loved that this book was a chaste romance.  It was about the true romantic feelings between people written like a classic novel would be written without ten pages of intimate details of their liaison.  I appreciated and loved this.

I also love how the mystery unfolded.  I liked that there were so many layers to it as it slowly unfolded.  I was not disappointed and was intrigued right up until the end of the novel.  The historical detail, romance, and mystery were all intertwined and perfectly written.  I loved this novel.

Overall, if you are looking for a new author that writes a charming tale reminiscent of Jane Austen, but with the gothic undertones of a Bronte novel, I highly recommend Julie Klassen.  I know I am going to be seeking out her other novels and reading them. The Secret of Pembrooke Park was a perfect novel and a very enjoyable read.

For a  great guest blog post by Julie Klassen, check out this link:  The English Manor Behind Pembrooke Park.

For details of The Pembrooke Park Blog Tour, please check out this link on Austenprose.


In celebration of the release of The Secret of Pembrooke Park, four chances to win copies of Julie’s books and other Jane Austen-inspired items are being offered.

Three lucky winners will receive one trade paperback or eBook copy of The Secret of Pembrooke Park, and one grand prize winner will receive one copy of all eight of Julie’s novels: Lady of Milkweed Manor, The Apothecary's Daughter, The Silent Governess, The Girl in the Gatehouse, The Maid of Fairbourne Hall, The Tutor’s Daughter, The Dancing Master, and The Secret of Pembrooke Park, one DVD of Northanger Abbey (2007) and a Jane Austen Action Figure.

To enter the giveaway contest, simply leave a comment on any or all of the blog stops on The Secret of Pembrooke Park Blog Tour starting February 16, 2015 through 11:59 pm PT, March 9, 2015.

 Winners will be drawn at random from all of the comments and announced on Julie Klassen’s website on March 16, 2015. Winners have until March 22, 2015 to claim their prize. The giveaway contest is open to residents of the US, UK, and Canada. Digital books will be sent through Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Good luck to all!

40 comments:

  1. I'm sad that this is the final day of the blog hop. It has been fun reading the different posts. Thank you for the great review. Julie is a new-to-me author. The Secret of Pembrooke Park sounds like a wonderful read.

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  2. Will be a new-to-me author. The novel sounds fascinating. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  3. Hoping for a win! Thanks for the review. I love Julie's work!

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  4. I'm so glad you enjoyed Julie Klassen's newest book. She's one of my favorite authors, and I'm excited to read this book!

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  5. Thank you for sharing your review with us, Laura! This has been such a lovely blog tour and I am saddened that it comes to an end today. Julie Klassen is one of my favorite authors and her books are amongst the ones that I constantly reread. One of those ones is The Maid of Fairbourne Hall(my mom's favorite). However, if you are looking for ones reminiscent of Austen & Bronte, I would suggest reading The Tutor's Daughter(my personal favorite) and The Girl in the Gatehouse. ~ Blessings, Juli emeraldelena@hotmail.com

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  6. Wow, thanks so much, Laura. I sincerely appreciate your wonderful review and am delighted to know you loved the book!

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  7. I felt similarly. This was a great book!! I have to read her others.

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  8. Enjoyed your comments and visiting your site. Sorry this blog tour is over.

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  9. I love Julie Klassen's writing & have enjoyed 5 of her books so far...with full intent on reading all of them, past or future! I've so enjoyed this blog tour and appreciate all the different bloggers featuring both her book "The Secret of Pembrooke Park" & the giveaway. It is sad to see it come to an end but exciting to see who will win! I really enjoyed your review Laura and was happy to hear that you truly enjoyed it as your first taste of her writing! She is a wonderful author and I hope you do get a chance to read other books by her. You will not be disappointed!!

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  10. I'm so glad Julie Klassen made it to your favorites list! She found her way onto mine with The Apothecary's Daughter, the first book I ever read by her. I've collected all of her books since then and look forward to reading more very soon.

    Blessings,
    Andrea
    Proofreader/Editor/Writer
    andrearenee2004@yahoo.com
    writingtoinspire.blogspot.com

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  11. Julie Klassen is one of my favorite authors!

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  12. Looking forward to this read!

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  13. I am looking forward to reading this novel!

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  14. Thank you for hosting this giveaway, Laura. I'm glad you enjoyed the novel so much. Your review is wonderful.

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  15. I would love to win the giveaway of Julie Klassen's latest novel. My favorite of her works is The Apothecary's Daughter

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  16. well this is my last comment in hopes of winning a copy! Fun stuff. Thanks!

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  17. Thanks for the review! Really looking forward to reading this one!

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  18. The Secret of Pembrooke Park is just the kind of book I love to read. Winning the giveaway would be fantastic!

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  19. Lovely Review!

    Hugs, Amada (pronounced: a.m.a.th.a)

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  20. nice review

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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  21. Love all her books! Can't wait to read this one!
    Dezi A
    sethdezAThotmailDOTcom

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  22. I am very intrigued by this book. I have it on my TBR list.

    lag110 at mchsi dot com

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  23. Yes! Laura, I had a similar reaction. I read this one as my first of her books and immediately decided that I needed to read others.

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  24. I agree and love how all of Julie's novels combination of Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, Victoria Holt, and Daphne Du Maurier. Thanks for a great review and for participating on blog tour. :D

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  25. I'm looking forward to reading this!

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  26. I absolutely love Julie Klassen! I cannot wait to read more from her! This blog tour is so exciting!

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  27. I am reading this book right now. I love Julie Klassen's books.

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  28. Last stop on the blog tour! It has been great reading all of the interviews, excerpts, & additional info. Awesome book and I have enjoyed being apart of the process since reading and reviewing the book back in December!

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  29. thanks for sharing the tour of julie's book with us.

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  30. Thank you Julie Klassen for an amazing book. I really enjoyed reading and had fun on the blog tour. This was my first blog tour and I had fun reading what other bloggers thought about the books. Along with some great interview questions and book excerpts.
    ~Amanda

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  31. Great giveaway! Thanks so much for sharing it!

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  32. Bonnie Tholl- I can't wait to read the whole series as I have not started them. They have been on my "want to list " for a long time.

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  33. I couldn't wait to get my hands on one of Klassens' books so I found one of her earlier books on my Library's shelves to dig into first :)

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  34. Would love to read this series

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  35. Great review! I totally missed the Henry Austen reference! Thanks for the chance to win!

    jafuchi7[at]Hawaii[dot]edu

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  36. I loved this book and started reading it again right away! Julie Klassen is amazing!

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  37. Love Julie Klassen and Jane Austen

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  38. I enjoyed reading your blog. I, too, am a fan of both Austen and Klassen. Have a great day! :)

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