The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill
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Third Person • Fiction • Multiple Points of View • 448 Pages
About the Book (Backcover Blurb):
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?
Why I Choose this Book:
Of late it seems as if covers have had far more power to grab me in than they used to have. This cover was so beautiful that I read the blurb, and when it didn’t appear to be too romantic, I requested the book. I still think the cover is the most eye-pleaseing one I’ve seen in some time.
What I Thought about this Book:
The book was slloowww getting started. I spent the first while wondering who the main character even was. As the story picked up a bit, I was surprised to find myself beginning to get intrigued. By the time the book was nearly over it was difficult to put down. (As in, reading far into the night.)
I felt as if I’d come to now the characters and I wanted to figure out what would happen to them next. There was good character development – I went from not liking any of the main people to being able to see why they did what they did and it making sense. I also enjoyed the setting. It seems like a lot of research went in to making the book realistic, and even though I had a few quibbles here and there, overall I felt like I was sucked into then world.
The plot was nice, but it’s a mostly character driven book, which I enjoyed. It reminded me of a Jane Austen book, which make sense considering the setting and time period. There wasn’t a huge amount of romance, but certainly a realistic amount that was handled well. (Yay for balance!)
If I had the second book in the series at my beck and call, I’m pretty sure I would be picking it up before the day was over.
The objections and hesitancies I have for this book are very few. There are some things that obviously aren’t acceptable, but they were portrayed as such. So, happy day!
I’m giving The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill 3 out of 5 stars, and 6 out of 10.
*I received this book from Bethany House Publishers