The Bridge to Belle Island

The Bridge to Belle Island

by Julie Klassen

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Overview

After a humiliating mistake, lawyer Benjamin Booker resolves to never again trust a beautiful woman. When an old friend is killed, the senior partner isn't satisfied with Bow Street's efforts and asks Benjamin to investigate. Eager to leave London for a while, Benjamin agrees. Evidence takes him to a remote island on the Thames, a world unto itself, shrouded in mist and mystery. Soon he finds himself falling for the main suspect—a woman who claims not to have left the island in ten years. But should he trust her?

On Belle Island, Isabelle feels safe and leads a productive life, but fear keeps her trapped there. When Mr. Booker arrives with news of her trustee's murder in London, Isabelle is stunned. She has not left the island, yet she has a recurring dream about the man's death. Or is it a memory? She had been furious with him, but she never intended . . . this.

When a second person dies and evidence shockingly points to her, Isabelle doesn't know who to trust: the attractive lawyer or the admirer and friends who assemble on the island, each with grudges against the victim. Can she even trust her own mind? While they search for the truth, secrets come to light and danger comes calling.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780764218194
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/03/2019
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 12,091
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

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. For more information, visit www.julieklassen.com.

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The Bridge to Belle Island 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
FHlady 2 days ago
Isabelle Wilder is a 30 year old spinster who is chained to her home on Belle Island by fear since most of her relatives who left the island ended up dead. Thirty one year old Benjamin Booker is a lawyer who just lost an important case due to being swayed by the wiles of his female client. Now one of his bosses, Percival Norris, has been found dead; and the main suspect is Isabelle Wilder whose trust he handled. When his other boss, Mr. Hardy, sends Benjamin to Belle Island to investigate, he finds much more than he bargained for. Slow building suspense and a plethora of suspects set the stage for a well developed Regency, romantic suspense. When you just about think you have figured out who killed Percival Norris, there is a twist that seems to point the finger at someone else. I felt the pace was a bit slow in places, but overall a very enjoyable read. **I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers through NetGalley. Opinions are mine alone. I was not compensated for this review.
DixieJudy 2 days ago
What an interesting book…..A lone island with only a bridge linking it to the mainland. The owner, a woman who is ruled by fear that crossing the bridge will surely bring death to her. Even though the one dearest to her is to be married and she longs to be there for her, she cannot overcome her panic…..Then things get very complicated, her uncle is murdered and she is the number one suspect, even though she has not crossed the bridge in years. She could not possibly have done the murder…..Enter a young lawyer who comes to the island to see what he can learn about the heiress and for evidence that she really did commit murder….All in all a great read filled with suspense, intrigue and romance. Klassen has certainly written one that will hold your interest to find out who the culprit is. It will surprise you…….I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
MJK108 4 days ago
A quaint, rather remote island in the Thames River sets the stage for Julie Klassen’s latest Regency tale! Suspense, intrigue, and romance add to the essence of this captivating story. After getting rather publicly humiliated during a trial, Benjamin Booker gladly accepts the challenge of going to the country and investigating Ms. Isabelle Wilder, purported to be a possible suspect in the death of her guardian, Mr. Norris, the senior partner at Mr. Booker’s law firm. Benjamin finds himself drawn into life on the island, making his investigation a bit more challenging than he planned. As the story unfolds and more details come to light, the suspect list develops as do the motives. The main characters each have their own distinct issues to deal with adding to the complexity of the story. I thoroughly enjoyed the plot twists that added depth to the intrigue. There were definitely a couple of things I didn’t see coming! A great read that will draw you in at the beginning and keep your interest all the way through. An intriguing little mystery that will surprise you, followed by a delightful ending filled with family, faith, and romance. This ARC copy was received from Bethany House Publishers and Netgalley.com. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own. #TheBridgetoBelleIsland #NetGalley
Betsy Tieperman 5 days ago
Mystery and Sweet Romance This page-turning mystery kept me interested from start to finish, including an eye-opening plot twist I never saw coming! Fictional and beautiful Belle Island provided a scenic backdrop to the story and enabled me to learn more about the geography of the Thames River. Along with a supporting cast who contributed much to the plot line, Isabelle and Benjamin, were endearing and strong characters who each had their own issues to overcome. As an avid reader of Christian fiction, I was impressed by two major themes and how they were incorporated into the storyline: forgiveness and trusting God. I love the way Ms. Klassen wove supporting and inspiring Bible verses into the story to support these concepts, including a personal favorite that I haven’t seen much in Christian Fiction. This was another winning and highly satisfying novel from talented author Julie Klassen, with perhaps her most inspirational messages yet. Well done! I received an advanced review copy from NetGalley and was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own. ~Betsy Tieperman
Tama_Fortner 6 days ago
Both Isabelle Wilder and Benjamin Booker have allowed the events of the past to overshadow and shape their present. Will they find the faith and courage they need to set aside the past and reach for a brighter future? Or will a murderer claim yet another victim? The Bridge to Belle Island is a story of letting go and of holding on to the One who holds the future in His hands. Klassen is a master of the Regency novel, skillfully weaving in a page-turning mystery that will keep you guessing until the end. *I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
JenniferPurcell 8 days ago
Julie Klassen’s The Bridge to Belle Island is a suspense-filled Regency romance, but for me, it wasn’t the Klassen I’m used to. Not to say that the book isn’t good. But it did take me a bit to get into. I pushed myself to continue reading, though, and I think it was well worth it. Klassen did a great job of slowly revealing clues and building suspense. I would be certain I knew who the murderer was, but then Klassen would throw a curveball that left me second-guessing. With twists and turns and plenty of suspects, The Bridge to Belle Island will keep you turning pages. For me, though, it took about a third of the novel before I was truly invested. The romance itself is nicely done, but it’s more of a subplot. The main story is in Isabelle’s anxiety and Benjamin’s search for redemption. Both are good stories and worthy of exploration, but they didn’t create the romantic tension I expected. If anything, they seemed to slow the story down a bit. And at times I found the leads to be a bit dry at times, though Isabelle became a bit more sympathetic when I learned more of her backstory. That being said, I do still recommend the book. Julie Klassen may not write action-packed reads, but she knows how to weave a mystery while exploring the human condition. I liked the way she explored how fear can control our lives, whether it’s fear of repeating past mistakes or fear of stepping out of your comfort zone. And just as she did with her Tales from Ivy Hills trilogy, Klassen has crafted a book perfect for a relaxing afternoon with a cup of tea.
Deanne-Patterson 8 days ago
I have read almost all of Julie Klassen's books and this has to be my favorite of all of them. The characters really jump off the page at you, demanding your attention to solve the case before another murder occurs. The story line was superb and I learned about Belle Island and River Thames , the ebb and flow of the river and it's flooding. Belle Island is fiction but I could picture myself there among it's people watching the mystery crack wide open. The story involves a disenchanted lawyer on the island to get answers to a shocking murder. All the clues point to a beautiful woman, but is she really innocent as she claims or does she have something sinister hidden behind her beautiful eyes. Smooth flowing the story takes us from one mysterious event to the next as the story progresses . Pub Date 03 Dec 2019 I was given a complimentary copy. Thank you. All opinions expressed are my own.
Fala19 8 days ago
It's been way too long since I've read a Julie Klassen book. The Bridge to Belle Island reminded me of what a master she is in this genre. The romance, the setting, the characters, the intrigue, the historical detail, the dialogue. So good! The mystery was superb. Everyone was a suspect and had plenty of motive to do the deed. I was constantly left guessing and trying to figure out what was going on and who the most likely suspect was. I was shocked when the reveal finally came. The pacing was a little inconsistent at times and dragged in a few places, especially the end, but other than that, I really enjoyed reading it. It's sure to delight fans of regency mysteries. I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley and voluntarily reviewed it. All thoughts and comments are my honest opinion.
Faye_reviews 10 days ago
A beautiful heiress is implicated in a shocking murder, while a lawyer who vowed never to trust a beautiful face is the only one who can help her clear her name. Isabelle loves her home on Belle Island, but fears keep her from spreading her wings and going beyond it's familiar comfort. She is shocked at the accusations, but she cannot with clarity say that she did not commit the crime. Benjamin took a different path than was laid out for him, carving out a career in law. He seeks to live his faith, and has a compassionate heart. He can't help but want to believe in Isabelle's innocence, even when all the clues point to her. A regency era gothic novel of murder, deceit, mystery, and betrayal. A compelling mystery, no one knows who to trust, even the suspects themselves are questioning if they could have done it. Benjamin is drawn to Isabelle despite his reservations he sees in her someone one who understands him like no one else, yet everything seems to lead to her. The mystery kept me guessing, along with the full cast of characters with secrets of their own. This is a wonderfully complex read, with good elements of mystery, faith, and characters that I loved cheering for the entire way through, with their vulnerabilities making them more real and relatable. A riveting and highly enjoyable read from beginning to end, with a mystery that kept me guessing and wonderful world building. Highly recommend this fantastic read! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Christianfictionandmore 10 days ago
One would think there would not be many suspects to be found on a small privately owned island related to a murder committed in London. Ah, but one would be wrong because there are suspects in abundance. It is up to attorney Benjamin Booker to work through them all in order to prove the innocence of Isabelle Wilder, owner and prisoner of Belle Island. Intrigued? I hope so because I believe you will find this mystery and Klassen's characters compelling. Klassen's theme of trust and confidence over worry and doubt is carefully woven into the story, and is viewed through the lens of personal failure and circumstances that steal one's hope. I highly recommend this book and am grateful to have received a copy from Bethany House via NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion. I was under no obligation to provide a positive review, and received no monetary compensation.
BlueJeansAndTeacups 10 days ago
*** REGENCY MYSTERY*** 1819, London – Thirty-one-year-old Benjamin Booker is an attorney who has risked everything for a female client he fully believes is innocent. But, when he loses her case, his whole world comes to a crashing halt. Distraught and frustrated he meets up with his boss at a local pub to discuss the case and his future. As they head out, they discover a scene at the home of Percival Norris, their retired colleague. Further investigation leads to a dead body that will eventually take Benjamin on a journey to Belle Island, across the Thames and the village of Riverton where his boss has asked him to investigate. Benjamin will do his best to remain objective and make his boss proud of him again. Thirty-year-old Isabelle Wilder is trapped by fear on the island, but has learned to navigate enough to be mistress of the house, despite much of her funds being tied up in a trust. She is respected by her employees and does her best to create jobs that will help provide for them. Everything is fairly routine, except for a beloved niece whose upcoming nuptials pull at Isabelle’s heartstrings since the wedding will be off-island. When a stranger shows up to share the news of the death, everything changes. Benjamin and Isabelle will have to work together, but neither fully trusts and both have debilitating issues to deal with. There is a murderer at large and threats move ever closer to the island as the story twists and turns. Favorite Quote: Psalms leapt out at her. God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea. Though the waters roar and be troubled. Lovely Tea Moment: Isabelle and Carlota sat side by side on chaise lounges in the boathouse, the double doors thrown wide to reveal the morning sunshine shimmering on the gently rippling water of the Thames. A tray of tea things sat on the small table between them, along with a plate of muffins. Isabelle had tasted them herself and filled the kettle. …A leisurely morning was a rare luxury on Belle Island … and Isabelle and Lotty were determined to enjoy it. I enjoyed 98% of this book. I felt the ending suddenly stretched out in an odd way, but that is perhaps my own preference. Overall, this is a very enjoyable book I would be happy to recommend. Bethany House Publishing © 12/3/2019 This is a stand-alone novel. I received an ARC of this book via the publisher for my honest opinion with no further compensation or expectation.
3C 10 days ago
From gifted writer Julie Klassen comes a captivating novel of historical suspense set in England, intensively researched, with a sweeping plot that involves romance, betrayal, and murder. Belle Island is rich in texture and full of color and authenticity, as the author paints a picture with words. The premise for this book is interesting, somewhat unusual in certain aspects, and the characters are mostly proper, sometimes charming, sometimes rogues, and generally determined individuals. Heroine Isabelle Wilder is a very sympathetic character. We identify with her desire to pursue what she wants (Belle Island) without having to answer to her stuffy trustee. The author also alludes to other restrictions of the time, showing that even men were hemmed in by the social contract of the period. Isabelle's relationships with the various members of the family and island community play a large role in what makes visiting her world so compelling. The atmosphere of the island is the perfect setting for a story where long buried family secrets come to light, and isolation fosters schemes for theft and revenge. The story is a page-turner, flowing smoothly from one mysterious event to the next. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
MaureenST 10 days ago
The author kept me guessing, almost to the end, and thankfully a wonderful job is done to totally complete this read. Greed and Pride, and maybe more, but these come in to play, and end with murder, but who wanted this lawyer dead? When the facts begin to fall, the list grows, and really surprises abound. The setting sounds so ideal, a beautiful island on the Tames, made me want to live there! If you like a book that is filled with action, most you won’t see coming, intrigue, and mystery, and natural disaster, this one won’t leave you wanting! I received this book through Net Galley the Publisher Bethany House, and was not required to give a positive review.
SusanSnodgrassBookworm 10 days ago
'Did she believe God was loving? She wanted to trust, but fear and worry all too often won out.' I have been a Julie Klassen fan since her very first book, which I have read several times. Her Regencies are perfect and the mystery she throws in completes them. I was drawn in immediately here and continually kept trying to find the culprit. Her characters are great and the plot was also the same and the build up to the ending was superb! Recommended. *My thanks to Bethany House Publishers for a preview copy of this book via Net Galley. The opinions stated here are entirely my own.
Lori782 13 days ago
One of the best Julie Klassen books I've ever read outside of Pembroke Hall. But this one is my favorite by hers. It's quite a bit different from what I'm used to reading by her but it's all good. The setting of this story is just right for what goes on in the book. The way Julie writes I pictured myself there perfectly. I enjoyed reading about Isabelle. Her struggles with anxiety reminds of of someone else I know. We lived by a creek. I've seen that creek when it's flooded and the bridge we crossed wasn't solid like Isabelles was. This was a swinging wooden bridge that we had to cross everyday no matter what. It was really scary so I prayed every time we had to cross it. I got dizzy when I looked down at that swirling water! I had some sneaky suspicions throughout the book on who it was and I was right!! Sometimes people seem one way and then they disappoint you. I've been there many times. Like Isabelle I've finally learned to put my trust in God. Oh yes, I'm still struggling with that for it's not easy because we think we can handle things on our own. Not so!! There's a verse that I love and it's written as a choral hymn. Our choir sang it once and it's stuck with me. God is our Refuge and Strength in times of trouble. Though the mountains will fall we will not fear something like that. Benjamin is my favorite! I love that he's flawed and along the way he too finally learns to listen and trust. Listening especially isn't easy. Too many times we have to learn the hard way just like Benjamin did. I'm just glad he didn't learn it too late. Life is fragile. We never know from one day to the next where it will take us. It's why we should tell our loved ones that we love and appreciate them while they're here. I know because all of my immediate family has passed away and like Isabelle I'm the only one left. When I lost my dad it was like I was out in limbo for a while. Some days I still feel like that until I remember my Heavenly father who truly loves me for who I am. I didn't find anything wrong with this book at all. To me, it was written perfectly. Even the cover is gorgeous. I love it. It's a wonderful hint as to what or whom the book might be about. I highly recommend this book! NO compensations were received. All opinions are my own.
grammy57 24 days ago
This book is a bit different than the other books I've read by Julie Klassen. This is a murder mystery. It is also a historical fiction with a bit of romance thrown in. I did enjoy the book. The characters were very well developed and the story flowed well. I do admit I was suspicious of whom the actual murder was about 3/4 of the way through. But, that did not detract from the story in any way. The ebook I received was an ARC and it did have a few errors both grammatical and spelling. A couple of times this caused me to have to re-read the sentence and figure it out but hopefully that will all have been addressed at final editing. I would recommend this book and give it a 4 out of 5-star rating. This review is my own opinion and freely given. I was given an ARC copy of this book through Netgalley.