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A Lasting Impression (Belmont Mansion, #1)
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A Lasting Impression (Belmont Mansion #1)

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  4,776 Ratings  ·  455 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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Oct 18, 2011 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
Jul 02, 2011 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 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 li ...more
Kellyn Roth
**Originally posted on Reveries Reviews**


Okay, I’d better calm down and write an orderly review of this fantastic book which I adore and want to read again and again and again and again …

So … yep.

First, Belmont … gorgeous. I want to live there. I need to live there!

Second, Adelicia Acklen. Amazing character. She was a real person who actually lived and some of the words she said in the book were written by her in a letter to someone! That’s so cool! She has a
Aug 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
I checked this book out from my church library on recommendation from a friend. I know a lot about the Civil War and post-Civil War era, so was pleasantly surprised to learn as much as I did by reading this book. I was unfamiliar with the wealthy Mrs. Adelecia Acklen and her fabulous mansion and art collection. I was so intrigued by her, I did my own research after finishing the novel. Ms. Alexander's description is meticulous, enabling me to envision the mansion, surrounding area, and artwork, ...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 leavi ...more
Jul 04, 2016 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 cli ...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.
Feb 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I liked the strong female characters in the book who are strong, yet imperfect and acknowledge that imperfection. I liked the glimpses of life after the Civil War that I had not considered such as how former slaves relate to white people they've known all their lives and vice versa.

I was also intrigued by Mrs. Aklen's life. Her marriages and the number of children she had lost. I think it really brought home to me what life was like in that time period f
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
Jan 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Feb 15, 2011 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 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
Jan 27, 2011 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 it ...more
This was what I said in 2014, and it still holds true: "I really loved this historical novel. It was a complex, sweet story, and I enjoyed the characters. I loved the themes of new birth, baptism, and forgiveness woven into the romance." I had entirely forgotten about this series when I was recently reminded of it when a fellow Goodreads friend had the second book on their to-read list, so I decided to reread this one and see if I can get the rest of the series as well.
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Richly layered and impeccably crafted, this is definitely a book that will make a lasting impression on its readers! Rich in history, Alexander manages to bring the post-civil war era to life. I could feel the conflicting spirits of hope and despair; the division of a people and the lingering taste of bitterness in a defeated state. My emotions ran amok as I read! In fact I was left half-dreading each page the deeper I got into the book because I knew that Claire's secret couldn't stay buried fo ...more
Tenille Berezay
Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Beautifully written story about a fascinating historical location. Great male leader and interesting female lead. It did slow a bit in the middle, but picked up nicely at the end.
Apr 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A Lasting Impression(2011, Bethany House) is #1 in the Belmont Mansion series by Tamera Alexander. It's a historical Christian romance with a touch of mystery and suspense, set at Belmont Mansion in Nashville, Tennessee in 1866.


Claire Laurent is the daughter of an art gallery owner in New Orleans. Her father's art gallery specializes in original pieces by master artists, many of which are actually painted by Claire. Claire does not like forging paintings, but feels forced by her fathe
Jun 17, 2016 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
Jul 01, 2011 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 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
Oct 07, 2011 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
Sep 29, 2011 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 i ...more
Nov 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
Thanks to this wonderful creation called the Public Library, I’ve had the chance to read several more books. I’ve made myself cut down on the amount of books I actually buy (you think it would be easy!), so the gem of a library has allowed me to read a lot more books that looked interesting, but ones I never got around to. Why I didn’t get a library card earlier, one will never know.

Anyway, A Lasting Impression was the first I’ve read of Tamera Alexander and I loved it for several reasons.

A) It
Oct 19, 2011 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 Belmon ...more
Aug 11, 2012 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.
Nov 27, 2011 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?
Jul 21, 2013 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.
Becky ♡The Bookworm♡
The Belmont Mansion, built in 1853...

And today after being fully restored in the early 1970's.

First of all, I LOVE stories that are based on real places and people. Belmont Mansion is an interesting place, filled with rich history and one of a kind pieces of art. The author's notes were fun to read and I found myself looking up facts and photos about the mansion that are mentioned throughout the book. Adelicia Acklen first lived here with her husband Joseph Acklen until his death made her on
Lydia Howe
This was my first book by this author, and I'm sorry to say my first impression was not very favorable. (Although, I do plan to continue on with the series, hoping that it gets better.)

The story line itself was interesting and made me want to find out what happened next - despite that, it was an extremely easy book to set down, which isn't generally a good sign with me since I'm fairly used to having a hard time putting books down once I pick them up.

My biggest fault with the book was the roma
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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)
“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.” 34 likes
“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
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