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A Lasting Impression (the first standalone novel in the Belmont Mansion series)

By Tamera Alexander


“Tamera Alexander has once again written a novel rich in storytelling and history, peopled with living, breathing characters who made me laugh, and cry. Better than sweet tea on a veranda, A Lasting Impression is a winner. I want to live at Belmont!”
~FRANCINE RIVERS, New York Times best-selling author of Redeeming Love

“Tamera Alexander paints vivid scenes, not with oils on canvas but with words on the page, as she sweeps us away to the cafés of New Orleans and the hills of Tennessee. In Claire Laurent we find a true artist, ever doubting her talents, ever questioning her calling. And in Sutton Monroe we meet a hero whose bright mind is eclipsed only by his tender heart. A lovely story, sure to please anyone who treasures a good romance.”
—LIZ CURTIS HIGGS, New York Times best-selling author of Mine Is the Night

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 from New Orleans to Nashville only a year after the War Between the States has ended, her path collides with attorney Sutton Monroe. She considers him a godsend for not turning her in to the authorities. But after he later refuses to come to her aid, Claire fears she’s sorely misjudged the man. Finding herself among the elite of Nashville's society, Claire believes her dream to create a lasting impression in the world of art is within reach––but only if her fraudulent past remains hidden.

The Federal Army has destroyed Sutton’s home and confiscated his land, and threatens to destroy his family’s honor. His determination to reclaim what belongs to him and to right a grievous wrong reveals a truth that may cost him more than he ever imagined––as well as the woman he loves.

Book Takeaway:

A Lasting Impression is about being authentic in one’s life and relationships, and in one’s faith. It’s a sweeping love story about a nation mending after war, the redemption of those wounded, and the courage of a man and woman to see themselves––and each other––for who they really are.

Why the author wrote this book:

When I first stepped foot across the threshold of the Belmont Mansion in Nashville, TN, and learned about Adelicia Acklen––the born-before-her-time woman who built Belmont––and her “tough as nails” personality and extraordinary life, I knew I wanted to write a story that included her, her magnificent home, and this crucial time in our nation’s history.

But when I “met” Sutton Monroe and Claire Laurent while visiting the mansion one afternoon, or more rightly, when they shoved their way into my imagination and met each other, oh…I knew I had to write their story. And I knew exactly what the setting would be too. The historic Belmont Mansion. After over two years of research and writing, A Lasting Impression is the culmination of that “chance meeting.”

So far the heroes in my novels have been ranchers, freighters, sharpshooters, sheriffs, U.S. Marshals, and doctors. So I loved it when Sutton Monroe finally revealed who he was––the most dashing and promising young attorney in Nashville in 1866. And who better to pair him with than an art forger? A woman who’s broken about every law imaginable in the world of art but who’s bent on leaving her past behind and starting anew.

Yet when she finds herself interviewing for the job of a lifetime in the home of a woman who could bury her with a single word, along with a vigilant attorney who would grab a shovel and help, Claire’s numb with fear. Yet, where else can she go? She wants so badly to have a second chance at life, and to make a good impression.

I love connecting with readers! You can find me online at where I host monthly book giveaways as a way of saying thank you! There’s no catch. Just sign up. If you’re in a book club, discussion questions for A Lasting Impression can be found there as well.

The first two chapters of A Lasting Impression can be found on the BOOKS page of my website. Hope you enjoy!


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