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A Lasting Impression (Belmont Mansion #1)

4.17  ·  Rating Details ·  4,147 Ratings  ·  402 Reviews
After an unwanted past, Claire strives to create something that will last as an artist among Nashville's elite society in the 1860s.

Claire Laurent's greatest aspiration is to paint something that will bring her acclaim. Yet her father insists she work as a copyist. A forger. When she's forced to flee her home, her path collides with attorney Sutton Monroe, who shows her ki
Paperback, 432 pages
Published October 15th 2011 by Bethany House Publishers (Baker Publishing Group) (first published June 2011)
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Nov 14, 2011 Katie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
First posted on my blog, Legacy of a Writer.

Wow. Words seem so inadequate to express just how rich this book is—both in historical details and the romantic tension. I can't remember exactly, but it's been a while since a book touched me so emotionally; I was fighting tears at times. But therein is the beauty of Tamera Alexander's new release, A Lasting Impression—her writing touches to the heart.

And the writing! Tamera's style was beautiful and brought to life the Belmont mansion as seen through
Robin Lee Hatcher
Nov 12, 2011 Robin Lee Hatcher rated it it was amazing
A Lasting Impression is a wonderful start to a new series. With writing that is rich and textured, Ms. Alexander paints a portrait of Belmont and Nashville after the Civil War that will pull you in and almost make you believe that you are living there yourself.
Mar 17, 2012 Linda rated it it was amazing
Oh. My. I don't even know where to begin to write a review that can do justice to Tamera Alexander's latest masterpiece. When I opened this book, I knew I was in for a treat, and I still managed to be overwhelmed by it. Tammy is truly one of the most gifted authors I have read, and A Lasting Impression is her best novel yet. Just as a black and white sketch is only a faint depiction of a painting, the summary above can only give a glimpse into the outline of this book. Tamera Alexander brings ...more
Margaret Chind
Tammy is a special author to me, and it's not just because we share the same school history with a private school in Georgia or the southern hospitality spirit. It's because of that and because her stories get under your skin and in to your heart. Her characters are real and leap from the page. I was captivated by every series I have read so far, pretty much from page one. I have lost many a night sleep or day's chore lacked accomplishment simply because I was too distraught by the idea of ...more
Jul 09, 2016 Shannon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a good story. I enjoyed the historical setting, the characters, the growing relationship between Claire and Sutton, and also the relationship she had with Mrs. Acklen. It was fun to imagine what it would have been like to live, or even work, in a grandiose place such as Belmont Mansion with all the descriptions that the author included throughout. The story was hard to get into in the beginning, it was slow and took awhile to set up but then became fun to read. There really wasn't a ...more
Ally (The Scribbling Sprite)
A sweet read, but I felt like there was no real conflict. Everything was too easily resolved. I would have liked a bit more tension, but as a romance it was a good story.
When I finished the last page of A Lasting Impression, I breathed a sigh of contentment. The story of Claire Laurent overcoming the hurts of her past was beautiful, genuine and a joy to read.

Alexander was spot on with the setting. I have never been to Belmont mansion, but I felt like I was there within the pages of this book. The opulence and grandeur were palpable, as well as Alexander's description of the surrounding landscape.

The characters were wonderful as well, each one coming to life in t
Nov 06, 2011 Casey rated it really liked it
Rich in historical setting and character depth, “A Lasting Impression” is one of those books you can’t help really savoring, while wanting to know what the ending is going to bring the characters.

The pace of this novel is evenly tempered through the entire book, and takes place in as beautiful a setting as ever to create on the page. Once you’ve stepped inside the doors of Belmont and have seen it through Claire’s eyes, you really don’t want to go back to the real world.

Rich is really the only
Nov 10, 2011 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
Let me confess up front – the cover of this book made me fall in love with Claire. What woman doesn’t sometimes imagine herself wearing one of the beautiful ball gowns from the Civil War era? And this one was spectacular.

That aside, the story inside was wonderful. Claire Laurent leaves a bad situation and just happens to fall into a dream world. As liason to Mrs. Adelicia Acklen, who is trying to reclaim her place in society, Claire is delighted to find that Belmont is filled with artwork beyond
Oct 21, 2011 Renee rated it it was amazing
A Lasting Impression is the perfect title for this book as it leaves a lasting impression. It's completely different from her westerns, set in postbellum Tennessee, but Tamera's classic style shines through. She is definitely one who writes romances with authentic characters and originality. Have you ever read a romance featuring a heroine who is a forger of paintings? I know I haven't and I've read a ton of romance. I can't really think of anything else to say about this book right now since ...more
Jul 17, 2016 Tashawna rated it really liked it
A Lasting Impression is about Claire Laurant, a young woman who seeks to bury her past of forging paintings for her father. Sent to Nashville, Tennessee after a threatening incident at her family's art gallery, Claire soon gets a job at Belmont Mansion, home of the extremely wealthy Adelicia Acklen. There she builds herself a new life, a life that could get her to her dream- to paint a something the world would notice. But soon she determines that she must tell the truth to those who have come ...more
May 17, 2014 Melanie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review-books
Review on Amazon:
Review on my blog (5/18):

I've had this book on my shelf for a while now, but I just never got around to reading it until recently. I think the cover is gorgeous and A Lasting Impression is one of those books you can judge by its cover! The story was very good and, even though it was a slower read for me, I loved it!

I loved the art aspect and the characters. Adelicia Acklen was one of my favorite ch
Oct 31, 2011 Wanda rated it it was amazing
“Would you paint if you knew you were only painting for me?”

Claire Laurent never asked for the life she was forced to lead. Her father manipulated and intimidated her into a life of deceit and lies by exploiting her artistic talents and forcing her to forge priceless paintings for his gallery. When an unexpected set of circumstances afford Claire an opportunity to leave her life of deception, she takes it and tries to make a new life for herself. As she finds a personal relationship with God and
Bluerose's  Heart
Dec 05, 2011 Bluerose's Heart rated it it was amazing
A Lasting Impression is one of the most beautiful books I've ever read! It has earned a well deserved place on my keeper shelf, which is getting harder and harder to do these days! There are just no words I could possibly say to express just how much I enjoyed this book. Really!

Tamera has created some of the most real characters. I felt like I knew them, like I was right there in the story with them. I laughed with them and cried with them. A Lasting Impression was one of the sweetest romances I
Amber Stokes
Jan 15, 2016 Amber Stokes rated it it was amazing
Tamera Alexander paints vivid and detailed images with her words, and A Lasting Impression is an exquisite showcase of her talent. Although sometimes the specifics of her stories become vague in memory over time, the reader is left with beautiful, emotion-filled impressions that endure. This particular story is quiet grand in scope - a much different setting than her previous novels, set in a luxurious world of art and parties and finery. And yet Alexander shows that no matter the setting - be ...more
Nov 14, 2011 Christy rated it really liked it
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 ...more
Aug 16, 2012 Loraine rated it it was amazing
This is a great book - Interesting, complex, richly developed characters with great intertwining story lines. Each of the three main characters were strong people facing problems from their past that were affecting their futures. The historical basis was wonderful and I would love to visit Belmont Mansion now as well as read a biography on Adelicia Acklen.
Apr 18, 2012 Lyn rated it really liked it
A Lasting Impression was my first Tamara Alexander book. I doubt it will be my last. Her heroine Claire Laurent is living a lie and trying to escape her past. But can she? The settings are rich and her plot is tense. What more could I ask?
Nov 27, 2013 Sara rated it really liked it
Shelves: civil-war-era
Excellent book containing so much history of the time and place. I very much enjoyed reading it and look forward to the next in the series.
inkwell reviews
Oct 17, 2016 inkwell reviews rated it it was amazing

Review from
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 s
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 ...more
Maaike van Beek
Apr 03, 2013 Maaike van Beek rated it really liked it
Again a wonderful I-can’t-put-this-away-to-go-to-bed-in-time novel written by Tamera Alexander. I had the honor of meeting her so I have *gleams with pride* a signed copy of A Lasting Impression.

The setting in which this story takes place, is different from Alexanders’ previous novels. The Fountain Creek Chronicles, the Timber Ridge Reflections and The Inheritance all take place in wild west Colorado, this book is located more to the south, around Nashville, where Tamera Alexander lives now. Thi
Margaret Metz
Nov 22, 2011 Margaret Metz rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Sigh ... From the breathtaking cover (I imagined what it would be like to wear that dress - didn't you?) to the last page, I was totally immersed in the world she created. I felt totally satisfied at the end, like I'd been seated at a Thanksgiving meal -- every dish special and created with love.

Nothing went to waste in this story either. The plot moves like a southern dance. It never drags or goes so fast you can't keep up. It's as beautiful to watch (read) as it is to participate. The beginni
Mar 04, 2013 Scribs rated it really liked it
This book gets four stars for the following reasons:

1. Fascinating period of history following the civil war (I'm a little obsessed with civil war, I DID grow up in Virginia.)
2. Beautiful setting of the Belmont Mansion.
3. Some of the most touching quotes about life I've read by an author.

Here are some of those quotes:

"We should not expect to have all the blessings of life and none of its trials. It would make this world too delightful a dwelling place, and I fear we would never care to leave it.
Dec 10, 2011 Laura rated it it was amazing
When Claire Laurent flees New Orleans, she hopes to leave her past behind, a past of forging paintings for her father and uncle. She ends up at Belmont Mansion as a personal liaison for Adelicia Acklen, one of the wealthiest women in America after the Civil War. When her past comes back to haunt her, will Claire be able to right the wrongs and look to creating a beautiful future?

This book is amazing. I love that Tamera Alexander set the book in the mansion of a real historical legend. The charac
Tamera Alexander has done it again! I absolutely loved A Lasting Impression! Definitely a new favorite of mine. Claire's struggle with the life she'd lived and her desire to move forward with a brand new life in a brand new place tugged at my heart strings. Sutton's own past, the struggle with what happened to his father and with everything he could lose, also made my heart ache. I loved the way Tamera Alexander brought them together and I adored their love story (though the love triangle had me ...more
Nov 04, 2013 AJ rated it liked it
This is the first book I've read by Alexander, and I really enjoyed it! The only thing that prevents me giving this a five-star rating is that, at least a half-dozen times throughout the book, there were extended passages of exposition that really seemed to bog the story down: in one example, during Claire's interview with Mrs. Acklen, she was asked a question, and it was followed by almost three full pages of internal monologue before being answered. I admit, I skipped over this and other such ...more
Jun 16, 2015 Rachael rated it it was amazing
What a beautifully written novel! I have enjoyed the other two novels I've read by Alexander immensely, but this one touched me far more deeply than the other two. Making one realize that we all have griefs and heartaches, but we need to remember we don't all handle them the same. With the brush of pen strokes, Alexander has written a masterpiece of a novel about serving the Lord in all that we do, being honest with ourselves and others, and more prominently pointing out that grief is no ...more
Susan Snodgrass
Nov 07, 2014 Susan Snodgrass rated it really liked it
I have read every single one of Tamera Alexander's books but this one was special to me because it ministered to me during a difficult time in my life.
It's sort of like God knew ahead of time what I'd be going through and He allowed her to write this book just for me.
Tamera Alexander does meticulous research for her books and it shows. I love, love, love to see her name on a book and that alone is enough for me to purchase the book.
Jan 16, 2012 Brigitte rated it really liked it
This book is my favorite on of this author so far. The plot kept me going and I didn't want to put the book down.
Another thing I forgot to write about earlier is the thing I got the most out of this novel. The main character is a painter and the author poses the question "What would you paint if no one saw it but Christ?" I've been thinking about that a lot- what if no one knew what I was doing with my time or what I'm creating if no one were to know but Christ?
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Christian YA Readers: June/July: A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander 6 16 Jun 18, 2015 07:13AM  
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Nov 19, 2014 02:25PM  
¿Por qué no una traducción al Español? 1 1 Oct 22, 2014 03:22PM  
Translation into Spanish, why not? 1 2 Jul 01, 2014 07:27PM  
Christian Histori...: Tamera Alexander 15 62 Aug 03, 2013 12:13AM  
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Tamera Alexander is a USA Today bestselling author and one of today's most popular writers in the inspirational historical fiction genre. She and her husband live in Nashville, Tennessee, not far from the Southern mansions that serve as the backdrop for six of her award-winning novels.
More about Tamera Alexander...

Other Books in the Series

Belmont Mansion (3 books)
  • A Beauty So Rare (Belmont Mansion, #2)
  • A Note Yet Unsung (Belmont Mansion, #3)

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“Just as hundreds of brushstrokes comprised a finished canvas, people were made up of a lifetime of experiences, both good and bad. And without knowing what someone had endured, it was impossible to truly know them - and accept them - for who they were.” 33 likes
“Let no one define how you se God alone. See yourself through His eyes and His strength, and you'll see who you can be despite being who you are.” 30 likes
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