Thanks for visiting my blog today! I’m taking part in a blog tour for Julie Klassen’s brand new Regency historical and romance novel, The Sisters of Sea View. Read on for my thoughts and some exciting story extras.
Some guests have come for a holiday, others for hidden reasons of their own . . .
When their father’s death leaves them impoverished, Sarah Summers and her genteel sisters fear they will be forced to sell the house and separate to earn livelihoods as governesses or companions. Determined to stay together, Sarah convinces them to open their seaside home to guests to make ends meet and provide for their ailing mother. Instead of the elderly invalids they expect to receive, however, they find themselves hosting eligible gentlemen. Sarah is soon torn between a growing attraction to a mysterious Scottish widower and duty to her family.
Viola Summers wears a veil to cover her scar. When forced to choose between helping in her family’s new guest house and earning money to hire a maid to do her share, she chooses the latter. She reluctantly agrees to read to some of Sidmouth’s many invalids, preferring the company of a few elders with failing eyesight to the fashionable guests staying in their home. But when her first client turns out to be a wounded officer in his thirties, Viola soon wishes she had chosen differently. Her new situation exposes her scars–both visible and those hidden deep within–and her cloistered heart will never be the same.
Join the Summers sisters on the Devonshire coast, where they discover the power of friendship, loyalty, love, and new beginnings.
The Sisters of Sea View by Julie Klassen is an enchanting story of romance and sisterhood with an idyllic coastal setting (Devonshire, UK). The Summers sisters are sure to charm their way into the hearts of readers with their varied personalities and shared bond of family as they must pursue a new venture — one that puts a few eligible gentlemen and other new friends in their path.
In regards to the romance possibilities, the three older sisters have prospects. From a slight flirtation to a newfound friendship or two, each has a different dynamic. I was rooting for Viola and Sarah, especially, in their arcs. I am happy to see this is a series by Klassen and there will be more stories to come centered on this family in Sidmouth.
A deeper theme I note and appreciate within the context of the story is how the value of every individual person is emphasized. Many characters offer examples of this, from looking beyond outward appearances, behaviors, and circumstances to appreciating the gifts, qualities, and hearts of people. Viola’s struggles and emotional healing factor into this theme, as does her new friend, Major Hutton, in reinforcing her worth and confidence.
As one could expect with a seaside setting, customs of the time such as bathing machines, supposed “healing” dips in the waters, and society functions all take place in these pages. Julie Klassen nods to a few Jane Austen characters and situations within the story, and has included epigraphs which delight and enlighten the reader to the real history and accounts of the region. Fans of Austen and the Sanditon adaptation should take note, as this has similar appeal and an even better story.
Thank you to the publisher for the review copy. This is my honest review.
Julie Klassen loves all things Jane—Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. Her books have sold over a million copies, and she is a three-time recipient of 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 RITA and Carol Awards. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Julie worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. She and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota.