A Lasting Impression (Belmont Mansion Series #1)

A Lasting Impression (Belmont Mansion Series #1)

by Tamera Alexander

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Blockbuster New Historical Series From Acclaimed Author Tamera Alexander

To create something that will last is Claire Laurent's most fervent desire as an artist. It's also her greatest weakness. When her fraud of a father deals her an unexpected hand, Claire is forced to flee from New Orleans to Nashville, only a year after the War Between the States has ended. Claire's path collides with that of Sutton Monroe, and she considers him a godsend for not turning her in to the authorities. But when they meet again and he refuses to come to her aid, she realizes she's sorely misjudged the man. Trading an unwanted destiny for an unknown future, Claire finds herself in the middle of Nashville's elite society and believes her dream of creating a lasting impression in the world of art may finally be within reach.

All that Sutton Monroe holds dear lies in ruin. He's determined to reclaim his heritage and to make the men who murdered his father pay. But what he discovers on his quest for vengeance reveals a truth that may cost him more than he ever imagined.

Set at Nashville's historical Belmont Mansion, a stunning antebellum manor built by Mrs. Adelicia Acklen, the richest woman in America in the 1860s, A Lasting Impression showcases the deep, poignant, unforgettable characters that set Tamera's stories apart and provides an inspiring love story that will capture readers' hearts and leave them eager for more.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781441233967
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/01/2011
Series: Belmont Mansion Series , #1
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 27,129
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

Tamera Alexander is a bestselling, award-winning novelist whose deeply drawn characters, thoughtprovoking plots, and poignant prose resonate with readers worldwide. She and her husband live in Nashville, Tennessee, where they enjoy life with their two adult children and Tammy's father. Learn more at www.tameraalexander.com.
Tamera Alexander (www.tameraalexander.com) is a USA Today bestselling novelist whose deeply drawn characters, thought-provoking plots, and poignant prose resonate with readers worldwide. She and her husband make their home in Nashville.

Tamera invites you visit her at her website, her blog, Twitter, or Facebook.

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A Lasting Impression 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 76 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tamera Alexander writes excellent stories. They are all full of humbling experiences with timeless threads of history,discovery, romance, and faith. I have enjoyed all her stories so far and look forward towards more!
inkwellreviews More than 1 year ago
My review from inkwellreview.com (Christian book review site) This book was one of the few that has made a “Lasting Impression” on me. Pun intended. It is one of my favorite books of all time, which is saying something because as you know, I have read a lot of books in my day. Tamera Alexander’s writing is out of this world. Other authors don’t even compare. This book seemed so realistic. From her writing style to her characters, it just seemed so real. This is not a small book. I mean, it’s four-hundred and twenty-six pages so, it is a pretty big book. And you know what? I didn’t want to stop reading about Claire’s Laurent’s life. You can guess that her character development is also extraordinary. It felt like I personally knew them and they could step out of the book and be real people (another reason to LOVE this book). Finding these quality’s in an author is somewhat rare. Plus, it is based off of Belmont Mansion which is located in Nashville Tennessee. This is a beautiful place to imagine while you’re reading this book. With a little touch a humor this book was everything you want in a historical novel. This is a very big and thorough book so if you are looking for something lighthearted and fast to read then I might recommend something else. I would encourage you to read this book.
Diana_Urban More than 1 year ago
Tamera Alexander has once again written an entertaining, solidly researched historical novel, this time focusing on late 19th century Nashville. The main characters and the supporting characters are well developed, and the writing is solid. The plot is well thought out and interesting; nothing feels contrived. Claire Laurent, Sutton Monroe, and Adelicia Acklen, the main characters, have the same doubts, fears, heartaches, and joys that many of us experience, and by the end of the book they feel like friends with whom I’d like to spend more time. The setting at Belmont Mansion provides an interesting historical backdrop, and it was fun to learn more about the social mores and societal expectations of that era. Kudos also to Bethany House for the cover design – the dress and pose described on pages 332-3 are wonderfully depicted on the front cover. I’m looking forward to the next book in this series!
Anonymous 3 days ago
Outstanding I am so thankful for the gift God has bestowed upon you.
theskett More than 1 year ago
Wow. This book written by a new-to-me-author truly left a lasting impression. Page turning tension kept me reading mostly straight through. Great story, set during Reconstruction in the South after the Civil War, and unforgettable characters. What I liked best was that while history formed a critical backdrop for the book, the story focused on people; not just romance but the very real struggles the characters faced. Truly award-winning writing. I’ll definitely plan to read other books by this author.
b-den on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the first book that I've read by Tamera Alexander, and I really enjoyed it! The story draws you in and transports you back to mid-1800 Tennessee. It was a great book and I look forward to more Belmont Mansion novels in the future.
TammyPhillips on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander is a thoroughly enjoyable historical romance. The novel is full of lovely description which compliments the setting nicely, and coupled with meaningful character development, it makes for a rich and authentic tale. Readers who enjoy being submersed in the culture and fineries of 19th century America will be very pleased.Claire has grown up surrounded by art and her greatest dream is to become an artist of her own merit. Unfortunate circumstances throughout her childhood require her to garner the strength necessary to overcome and rise above her less than puritan beginnings. Rising to the challenge, Claire is able to secure honest employment, circulate with societies elite, and experience opportunities she never imagined. And through it all, discover the forgiveness of a loving God.
Nise on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this first book of a new series. It was full of great characters looking for a new start for a variety of reasons. The setting is so richly described that I felt I was right there with the characters, and the historical detail was wonderful. Claire and Sutton have great chemistry and there are many sweet moments between them as their relationship progresses. I look forward to the second books of the series.
southernsassygirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It's so difficult to find a starting point in describing how positively beautiful this book was. It was rich, lush, majestic, breathtaking--so many things that, if I were to actually see everything from it in person, it would all leave me speechless. And if that wasn't enough, just to know that part of the story was based on an actual historical figure and place, not to mention set in my home state...well, I couldn't get enough quick enough! I soaked in every single thing--the magnificent Belmont mansion, the overwhelming collection of artwork, the gradual friendship, then romance, between Claire and Sutton--that when I read the last page, I literally felt full, like I had just enjoyed the most delicious meal in a 5-star restaurant.I can't imagine what Tamera has in store for book 2, but you better believe that I will make a return trip to Belmont Mansion! In fact, the next time I'm in the Nashville area, I hope-hope-hope that an actual trip to the mansion can work it's way into the travel plans...how much fun would that be?! :o)
lasperschlager on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander was an enjoyable historical Christian Fiction book. The story is set in Nashville a few years after the Civil War, when both poverty and great wealth are found. It is on the wealthy side of things that Claire Laurent finds herself after leaving her home in New Orleans. Claire meets Sutton Monroe and Adelicia Acklen, both of whom are skeptical of Claire and her background but grow to become fond of her.The descriptions of the Belmont Mansion are very detailed, allowing the reader to imagine they are there seeing it for themselves. Many pieces of art are mentioned throughout the book and these too are described in loving detail. I found the tone of this book to be less focused on faith and praying unlike most other historical Christian fiction books I have read. Not that you don¿t find those thoughts and discussions running through the book but there was no real strong struggle on Claire¿s part, it was a quiet transformation that seems like it could peak if she returns in any future Belmont Mansion books.I enjoy Tamera Alexander¿s writing and look forward to reading more of her books.
polarmath on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Claire had been trained to paint like a famous painter and her father exploits this talent by making her paint forgeries. Because of this they do not stay in one place long enough for her to feel at home. She wants to paint for herself, but her father will not let her. Eventually she has to leave New Orleans for Nashville and taken on other jobs. While at this job she comes to terms with what she needs to do.
kathleen.morrow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Overall, I thought this was an interesting and fun book. I enjoyed reading it. Alexander's writing is better than most Christian fiction authors, to be honest. I thought her characters were well drawn and the plot moved along well. She developed chemistry between the two main characters - although I thought there could have been a little more buildup. My only problem was the historical background. She seemed to be trying to write historical fiction, but there were few historical details and I thought the story seemed removed from the post Civil War/Reconstruction setting.I don't think this is Alexander's best work - and I still prefer Deanne Gist for this genre - but I certainly thought A Lasting Impression was a pleasant way to spend a Saturday afternoon.
kaykwilts on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Being a native of Nashville, Tennessee I really did enjoy the book. I have visited just about all the historical places in Nashville, Travelers Rest, the Hermitage, and Belle Meade Mansion but have never visited Belmont Mansion. Reading this book created in me a desire to visit. I enjoyed the historical spin and enjoyed reading about Adelicia Hayes Franklin Acklen. I think Tamera Alexander did her research well and liked the way she portrayed Mrs. Acklen. I loved the way Tamera Alexander incorporated Christian principles in the novel without being too preachy.The only criticism I have is at times the story dragged but it was still interesting and I sincerely hope that she intends to wrote more Belmont mansion novels.
AprilKnarr on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I found the novel, A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander a fun book to read. It is well written with romance, drama, stunning imagery, some godly truths, and a small amount of humor. Tamera Alexander vividly portays Belmont Mansion as breathtaking to say the least. A Lasting Impression is a feel good book that should please anyone who enjoys reading a good historical romance.
LynndaEll on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
_A Lasting Impression_ relates the story of a talented young artist ¿ Claire - whom her father exploits by selling her paintings as if done by Old Masters. She¿s a forger at a very young age. Though the story begins in New Orleans, most of the book takes place in Nashville, TN. The backdrop explores the bitter emotions of a society split by the trauma of the civil war that had ended just prior to the time of the story. The romance between Claire and Sutton develops slowly with issues of telling the truth and learning to trust raising barriers along the way.Ms. Alexander did a fine job of weaving a thread of Christian faith into the story without preaching. Claire earnestly tries to escape the life of a forger in Nashville and turns to God for help. Sutton Monroe, the young lawyer looking for the forgers, struggles with forgiving the Union soldiers for murdering his father and stealing his property. He also feels guilty over his part in his father¿s death and in surviving the war when his friends did not. He seeks God¿s help in recovering from these experiences. They both learn to trust God and find hope of redeeming the past by supporting each other in the present.The plot and character development enhance each other as the story unfolds. The richness of the detail and the twists and turns along the way make for an attention-holding book. Only the author¿s description of New Orleans rang a false note for me. (I live in New Orleans.) New Orleans never smells like the ocean. We live in the middle of a swamp with the Mississippi River meandering through the middle of it and Lake Pontchartrain sloshing on the north side of the city. The French Quarter may have smelled like rank river mud or like the perfumed blossoms of sweet olive trees, but never like the ocean. Neither do beignets taste ¿yeasty.¿ They have a small amount of yeast in the recipe, but the overwhelming taste is sugar with an under tone of the hot lard in which the beignets were fried. The danger in eating them has always been that you breathe in some of the thick powdered sugar covering the top and immediately sneeze it off the beignet and all over your companion!Since I do not know Nashville as well, I can only hope that the author was more authentic with the ambience of that city. I suggest that, when you read _A Lasting Impression_, you do as I did, suspend your belief on the level of accuracy in the book and enjoy a fascinating story.
Chrizzy on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Tamara Alexander leaves a lasting impression in this somber story of redemption and grace. Claire Laurent begins her journey full of heartbreak and deception, using her gift of painting as a forger only to save her Mother. When the circumstances turn, she makes a bold statement of independence to start a new life and leave her heartbreak behind. She grows in her independence, in her womanhood, as a painter, friend and with in her relationship with her God in this beauitful story.
Tara22 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Tamera Alexander's Fountain Creek Chronicles books are some of my favorite and I felt truly privileged to get to read an advance copy of her new book, A Lasting Impression. This story takes place in the year following the end of the Civil War in Nashville, Tennessee. Claire, who emigrated from France with her parents when she was little has been living in New Orleans, copying other people's paintings at her father's direction, at time's without letting the buyer think her creation was an original. From there the story takes off, and from their I became completely invested in the outcome. This story has humor as well as the pain of overcoming one's losses and the weight of one's past mistakes. It is also the making of friends and finding your own place in this world. I can't quite explain it, not yet anyways, but this book struck a chord of familiarity with me that has really pushed me to not be so inhibited by my own perceived insecurities.
JaneSteen on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Where I got the book: my local library.Claire longs to be recognized for her artistic talent, but her father and his business partner force her to forge paintings. A move to Nashville gives Claire the chance for a new start, and she begins to fall for Sutton. But her past is still unresolved.My pointer was hovering between three and four stars for this review. Let's start with the 4-star side: I did get caught up in the story by the time I got to the last hundred pages of the book. The plot was nicely constructed, and I found myself wanting to like the characters.On the 3-star side, having read a few inspirational romances I am beginning to long for a different character arc. Enough with the feisty yet submissive heroine with a secret, who longs for God to be real but has Doubts. My other gripe was that I like my historical reading to ring true; this was the Hallmark TV show version of post-war America, with a picture-perfect setting, handsome men and beautiful women, and Gone With the Wind-style former slaves who are fiercely loyal to ex-Massah.I found Alexander's prose style a little heavy on the adjectives and the whole breathless-admiration-of-anything-European never sits well with me, probably because I'm European myself and not easily impressed by a bit of French. And this is a good illustration of how reviews are subjective; to some people this kind of glossy detail is food for the imagination. So I will end by recommending this book to readers who love to be transported to a movie-set world, and the four stars stay.
ChicGeekGirl21 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Since I currently live in Nashville, I was excited to read A Lasting Impression for the historical details about the Belmont Mansion, and I was not disappointed. Alexander paints a world that you can just immerse yourself in. However, the plot does drag a bit in A Lasting Impression and, sadly, despite the fact that this book is a romance, you never really feel a sense of passion or excitement from the characters. The romance aspect is tepid and--like in many Christian romances--extremely chaste and gender normative. In fact, the main character Claire was a little more traditionally feminine (quiet, gentle) than heroines in other Christian romances I've read who have a bit more spunk in them.A Lasting Impression is a good book, and, again, the historical details were excellent. But ultimately, it's forgettable.
shelaugh1972 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was an amazing book!!! The author's descriptions made you feel you were there and part of the story. Thank you for writing this book and I look forward to more of this author's work.
love2readnovels on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Claire Laurent loves to paint but she doesn't like doing what her father and uncle insist she do. Paint forgeries of famous paintings. When a robbery occurs at her father's gallery her uncle sends her to Nashville. Then fleeing some unwelcome advances from the man her uncle sent her to, she finds herself sleeping in a church. Claire overhears a couple of women talking about a job opportunity. When the women leave she thinks she's alone until Sutton Monroe makes himself known. A very handsome and intimidating attorney. She interviews at Belmont Mansion for the job as Mrs. Acklen's personal liaison but soon realizes that Sutton Monroe is her personal attorney and close friend. Sutton has his own problems going on with his family's land and his father's reputation. Claire is both challenged and inspired by Sutton as well as Mrs. Acklen. Sutton is intrigued by Claire's sweet yet feisty personality. Claire knows that at some point she must be honest about her past but when she does it may cost her everything she holds dear!A Lasting Impression was a charming tale loaded with lots of great characters that were well drawn and had lots of depth to them. You hit the ground running in the beginning of the story but I must admit that toward the middle it seemed a little slow. The last half of the book however was WONDERFUL! I have to say that Sutton and Claire will remain some of my favorite characters. There was a chemistry between them that was tangible. Mrs. Acklen was a wise woman. One thing she said to Claire was so good. She said, "Oftentimes, through the years, Miss Laurent...I've pondered how much is provided for us by God's goodness. So many sources of enjoyment, and how thankful we should be. We should not expect to have all the blessings of life and none of it's trials. It would make this world too delightful a dwelling place, and I fear we would nerve care to leave it." That's good advice for each of us. The story had a nice blend of humorous moments, serious moments, touching moments and tense moments. I was pretty sure that I knew how it would end but the journey in getting there was very rewarding. Tamera Alexander is known for her wonderful rugged western stories but I must say I'm confident she'll make A Lasting Impression with her Belmont Mansion Novel. I'm looking forward to the next installment!!! A thank you goes to Bethany House and LibraryThing for providing this complimentary copy for my review!Paperback: 432 pagesPublisher: Bethany House (November 1, 2011)ISBN-10: 0764206222ISBN-13: 978-0764206221
MichelleSutton on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A Lasting Impression was an emotionally complex historical novel complete with post Civil War Southern charm and all of the nuances that make novels set in the south so appealing. I loved how the story began with tragedy setting the tone, and how such complex issues regarding the gallery's artwork and forgery emerged to become a weight that was too much for Claire to bear. I could see the "writing on the wall" regarding how the scam was doomed to fail at some point. I loved how the author used the tragedy to make a way for the heroine to move to Nashville and begin a new life for herself. The delightful interview she had with the lady of Belmont, Mrs. Acklen, was only the beginning of the heartfelt humility that Claire displayed. I loved how her heart bonded with Mrs. Acklen's over time. Claire was a truly lovable heroine in that she was humble and gracious, which only increased as the book progressed. The hero, Sutton, was quite the gentleman, but still very much a man. And of course, I love his name since it matches mine. I think I fell in love with Sutton along with Claire. He was so considerate and had such integrity despite the hard times he'd experienced. He was also very human and I loved the protectiveness he felt toward Claire, yet he still gave her room to make her own choices. The romance between Sutton and Claire was delectable. I must say, the passion they had for each other and those tender kisses were enough to make me a bit breathless at times. Wow. The author knows how to build the romantic tension in an almost reverent fashion. Their love was evident and powerful. I loved that about this story. I also loved how the author showed that telling the truth not only clears a person's conscience, but it also earns the respect of others. I was proud of Claire for facing the truth about her past and dealing with it in a responsible manner. Bottom line... this was a wonderful historical romance! The plot and romantic thread in the story was as beautiful as the book cover, which is one of the most stunning covers I've ever seen. Bethany House outdid themselves with the cover design. I have also learned so much about art, painting, horseback riding, and putting on a gala event from reading this book. I even learned a bit more about the post Civil War south. I adore books that teach me something new and make me think about my life and the way I live it. This book delivers that reward and more. The heroine's tender spirit was beautiful to experience, and I loved how the author showed that it not only drew Sutton to her, but it won his heart in the end. What a great example of how Christ's love draws us to Him as well. I highly recommend this book!
jasmyn9 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was one of the few books I've read that has left me with a feeling of wow. The characters, the setting, the storyline...everything seemed to line up perfectly to create a fantastic novel. Claire was brilliant. The perfect mix of repentant with enough of a real person to really make her come alive. Her life was extreme but still believable, if a bit lucky at times. Her relationships, not just with Sutton, but with the entire cast of the book, come slowly at first and the develope into something very rich and meaningful. I truly enjoyed watching Claire and Sutton get to know one another and discover their lives together.Now many of you may remember me saying that I wasn't a big fan of Christian novels. Well, this book is one of the reasons I keep giving them a try. Religion was not written in every line, but rather between the lines, with characters trying to live their lives in the way they know they should be. They just picked right back up and tried again.
Coranne on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I am a big fan of art and I really enjoyed reading about someone who is an art forger. I love Tamara Alexander's books and this book did not disappoint. The love story was written well, the characters were excellent, and the plot was enjoyable.I was surprised, however, about how long the book was- I felt like a good 50-75 pages of the book could have been cut out and I would have been fine with it. There were parts in the middle that lagged a bit (most of the real action happened in the beginning and the end of the book). It seemed to take a bit away from the drama of the book and I found myself skimming a bit through those parts.All in all, this was another enjoyable book by Tamara Alexander. If you are a fan of historical fiction, or of the author- I am sure you will be pleased.
MandaT on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The book is set in 1866 and follows a young girl named Claire who is an aspiring painter. As she seeks to distance herself from her family's past misconduct and make a new start, she encounters a life changing decision she must make....coming clean about her past life or trying to hide it.I really enjoyed this book! Tamera Alexander did a great job pulling me into her story line and keeping me interested throughout the entire book. The characters learn so much through their journey, and many of their life lessons are difficult ones. I would highly recommend this book! **I received this book free from Library Thing's Early Reviewers Program in exchange for an honest review.