Monday, January 2, 2012

The Girl in the Gatehouse by Julie Klassen

5 out of 5 stars 
Mariah Aubrey has disappointed her family and those who trust her. Choosing to seclude herself from their condemnation, she takes up residence in the gatehouse of her aunt's estate. Determined to enjoy one semblance of life and support herself, she secretly pens novels. 
   Captain Matthew Bryant has worked hard to reach his current success--hoping one day to attain proper status in the eyes of the woman who once rejected him. When he leases an estate, he finds himself intrigued by the beauty who resides in the gatehouse. The more whispers he hears about her, the more he realizes that involving himself with Mariah Aburey would undo all he has accomplished. 
    Yet they seem drawn together, in a quest to uncover the secrets of the estate they both live on. How many secrets will be revealed? And how far will one ambitious captain go in order to obtain the prize he's longed for all these years?

The Girl in the Gatehouse has to be one of the most outstanding, intriguing, and vibrant books I've had the privilege of reading all year! Klassen pens an excellent story that leaves readers hanging on every word until the last page. There is never a dull moment in this story!

In the past, I haven't taken to Mrs. Klassen's novels very well. While I've always found them enjoyable, they just never seemed to resonate or stir my imagination. This novel, however, is not only one of the best she's ever written, but probably one of the best examples of an outstanding and well-written novel in Christian fiction.

In this novel Klassen whisks readers away to regency England and introduces them to a story that is overflowing in vibrant settings and rich characterization. Her writing style and characters capture the Jane Austen-type characters (and Austen herself, for that matter), while powerfully meshing the mystery and Gothic elements one can find in a Charlotte Bronte novel. Even the title of the novel lends a certain air of mystery to it. 

Klassen introduces a variety of plots and mystery that might feel like a lot at first. Rest assured, she expertly weaves all those individual threads into a masterful tapestry of a story.  

Aside from a lush setting, enriching characters, and outstanding story-telling, the spiritual element in this story is absolutely beautiful. Not too light, yet not overbearing, it lends just the right amount to have a profound impact on the reader. I believe the spiritual element is what adds that extra spark to this novel that already shines!

Without a doubt, I highly recommend The Girl in the Gatehouse! As, I've already stated, it has to be one of the best books I've read all year.  

About the Author 

Julie Klassen loves all things Jane--Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Julie worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. She has won the Christy Award: Historical Romance for The Silent Governess(2010) and The Girl in the Gatehouse (2011) which also won the 2010 Midwest Book Award for Genre Fiction. Julie and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota. For more information, visit


Available from Bethany House Publishers in eBook and print formats 

Currently on sale in Kindle formats for $2.99

Read the First Chapter

The Girl in The Gatehouse

Don't miss Julie Klassen's latest release,


  1. I've been curious about this one ... sounds even better after reading your review!


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