Book Review: The Painter’s Daughter

14 Apr

Unknown-1Sophie Dupont assists her father in his studio, keeping her own artwork out of sight. In private, she paints the picturesque north Devon coast, popular with artists–including handsome Wesley Overtree, who seems more interested in Sophie than the landscape.

Captain Stephen Overtree is accustomed to taking on his brother Wesley’s responsibilities. Near the end of his leave, he is sent to find his brother and bring him home. Upon reaching Devonshire, however, Stephen is stunned to learn Wesley has sailed for Italy and left his host’s daughter in serious trouble.

Stephen feels duty-bound to act, and strangely protective of the young lady, who somehow seems familiar. Wanting to make some recompense for his own past failings as well as his brother’s, Stephen proposes to Miss Dupont. He does not offer love, but marriage “in name only” to save her from scandal. If he dies in battle, as he fears, she will at least be a respectable widow.

Desperate for a way to escape her predicament, Sophie finds herself torn between her first love and this brooding man she barely knows. Dare she wait for Wesley to return? Or should she elope with the captain and pray she doesn’t come to regret it?

61+q3qQE98L._UX250_Julie Klassen loves all things Jane — Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. She worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. Three of her novels have won the Christy Award for Historical Romance. Her book, The Silent Governess, was also a finalist in the Minnesota Book Awards, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year Awards, and Romance Writers of America’s RITA Awards. Julie is a graduate of the University of Illinois. She and her husband have two sons and live near St. Paul, Minnesota. Visit for more information.


My Impressions:

Julie Klassen is a favorite with fans of historical romance, especially novels set in the British Regency era. The Painter’s Daughter is an example of why.
With period details, complex characterization and plot lines that will keep the pages turning, this novel also presents a strong message of Christ’s sacrifice. I loved this book — you will too!

Sophie Dupont, the shy and modest daughter of a talented painter, finds herself in love and in trouble. Seemingly deserted by her child’s father, Sophie’s options for a future are limited by the moral code of her day. Hoping she is choosing wisely for her child, Sophie embarks on a marriage of convenience. But secrets have a way of coming out . . . .

The reader is transported back to early 19th century England via Klassen’s meticulous eye to detail. From fashion to furnishings to manners, all aspects of life in the years of England’s Regency are revealed effortlessly. Characters, both major and supporting, are well-drawn. I came to care about timid and tender Sophie, impulsive Wesley and brusque Captain Overtree. The emotions and motives described run the gamut of the human experience and are just as relevant today as in the past. Although Sophie’s situation would be handled very differently in today’s world, the plot was always believable. The third person account is partly told in remembrances by the characters allowing for a natural unveiling of their past histories. With a marriage of convenience, a contentious love triangle and sizzling scenes, The Painter’s Daughter gives fans of romance more than enough to savor. Captain Overtree’s strong faith is used to point to Christ’s love — he is an excellent example of sacrifice and unconditional love.

Beautifully detailed and historically accurate with complex characters, The Painter’s Daughter is a highly recommended read. A good bet for book clubs that like historical fiction too.

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

Great for Book Clubs.

To purchase this book, click HERE

(Thanks to Bethany House for a review copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)




2 Responses to “Book Review: The Painter’s Daughter”

  1. Iola Goulton April 14, 2016 at 6:53 pm #

    Sounds great! I love Julie Klassen’s books, although some have been better than others. It sounds like this is one of the good ones.

    • rbclibrary April 14, 2016 at 10:24 pm #

      Like you, I have found some of the books to be better than others. My favorite before this book was The Girl in The Gatehouse. If you liked that novel, I think you’ll like this one too.

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