The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill – Q&A with Julie Klassen and Giveaway


Hello dear readers

Today I bring you a very different post, a small interview with author Julie Klassen concerning her latest novel The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill.

This is a different post because The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill is not a JAFF book, but Julie Klassen is an enthusiast of Jane Austen and she transports the magic of Jane ‘s regency world into her books. I’ve hear much about this author and could not resist being a part of this wonderful blog tour. I’m honored to be the first stop in it and I hope you enjoy reading Julie Klassen’s answers as much as I did 😉 The premise of this book is captivating, but Mrs. Klassen’s enthusiasm regarding the inn’s importance in regency England was the final incentive to put this book at the beginning of my TBR pile. I’m looking forward to read it and share my opinion with you, until then, please see the blurb and Mrs. Klassen interview 🙂


***Book Blurb***


The lifeblood of the village of Ivy Hill is its coaching inn, The Bell. When the innkeeper dies suddenly, his genteel wife, Jane Bell, becomes the reluctant landlady. Jane has no idea how to manage a business, but with the town’s livelihood at stake and a large loan due, she must quickly find a way to save the inn.

Despite their strained relationship, Jane turns to her resentful mother-in-law, Thora, for help. Formerly mistress of The Bell, Thora is struggling to overcome her losses and find purpose for the future. As she works with Jane, two men from her past vie for her attention, but Thora has promised herself never to marry again. Will one of them convince her to embrace a second chance at love?

As pressure mounts from the bank, Jane employs new methods, and puzzles over the intentions of several men who seem to have a vested interest in the place, including a mysterious newcomer with secret plans of his own. With the help of friends old and new, can Jane restore life to the inn, and to her empty heart as well?

Visit to find a map of the village, character profiles, a book giveaway, and more!

You can find this book at: – The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill – The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill



***Author Bio***


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. Her books have been honored with the Christy Award for Historical Romance, the Minnesota Book Award, and the Midwest Book Award, among others. Julie and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota. For more information, visit



***Q&A with Julie Klassen***


What can you tell us about the series, Tales From Ivy Hill?

The series tells the stories of four women facing life-altering challenges with the help of their quirky neighbors and intriguing newcomers. Each novel will have a romance and drama wrap up in a hopefully satisfying way, while the main character’s story spans all three books. The series celebrates the strong bonds of friendship, because in a small village like Ivy Hill, everyone is connected, like leaves on a vine.


Why did you choose to set the first book in the series at an inn?

In the early nineteenth century, before the advent of trains, the lifeblood of many small villages were their coaching inns. In this era, stage and mail coaches were the primary means of travel, and they stopped at coaching inns along the way to change horses, let passengers take a meal, or stay the night. Coaching inns were restaurant, hotel, “train” station, travel agency, livery, and repair shop, all rolled into one. I think it’s a wonderful setting for a series, providing a backdrop for a cast of regulars who work at or frequent the inn, as well as for new people who are traveling through.


Do you as the author have a favorite resident of Ivy Hill?

I like so many residents, but would have to say Thora Bell. Her gruff exterior disguises a hidden vulnerability, and her sassy directness, and dry, often self-deprecating sense of humor endeared her to me, if that’s not a weird thing to say about a fictional character I created. 🙂


What real-life locations inspired the setting of the series?

Ivy Hill is a fictional place, but it was inspired by the National Trust village of Lacock in Wiltshire, which I’ve had the privilege of visiting a few times. Lacock was used as a film location for scenes in Pride & Prejudice (1995), Cranford (2007), Emma (1996), and recently, a market scene in Downton Abbey (season 6). Even though I am using Lacock as a basic model for Ivy Hill, I’ve placed the village farther south, on the old Devonport-London Royal Mail route, not far from Salisbury and the real village of Great Wishford.


Assume for a moment that Mr. Darcy had never met Elizabeth. Which of your heroines would be most likely to attract his interest?

What a fun question. I would guess that Mr. Darcy would admire Miss Rachel Ashford. She might be a little proud, and not a great reader, but I don’t think he would be able to resist her gentle beauty and fine eyes.


***Blog Tour Schedule***


December 5: Author Q&A on Pemberley to Milton

December 6: Excerpt on My Love for Jane Austen

December 8: Review on Laura’s Reviews

December 9: Book Spotlight on More Agreeably Engaged

December 10: Review on A Bookish Way of Life

December 11: Review and Excerpt on Delighted Reader Book Reviews

December 12: British Show Inspiration Guest Post on Living Read Girl

December 13: Historical Background Guest Post on English Historical Fiction Authors

December 14: Review on Calico Critic

December 15: Excerpt on So Little Time

December 16: Review and Author Q&A on My Jane Austen Book Club

December 17: Review on Just Jane 1813

December 18: Excerpt on Babblings of a Book Worm

December 19: Review on Austenesque Reviews

December 20: Guest Post on Jane Austen in Vermont

December 21: Review on Luxury Reading



***It’s giveaway time***

Be sure to enter the giveaway before you leave—the winner will receive a $20 Teavana gift card and a package of four inspirational British romances from four different eras (The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill by Julie Klassen, A Haven on Orchard Lane by Lawana Blackwell, The Lost Heiress by Roseanna M. White, Not by Sight by Kate Breslin). The winner will be notified on December 22.

To enter click the link below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Filed under giveaway, interview

49 responses to “The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill – Q&A with Julie Klassen and Giveaway

  1. Arjanne

    This book sounds really lovely. I’ve read a few books by Julie Klassen and especially loved The Tutor’s Daughter.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The relationship between Jane and Thora sounds interesting. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. KateB

    I love the blurb of this story, with two strong female characters in Regency England. I haven’t read anything by Mrs. Klassen, but I would like to read her book. Thanks for this generous giveaway.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sophia Rose

    I had the chance to read this one already and loved it. The friendship theme and small village setting were great.

    Hey Rita! Thora reminded me of Mrs. Thornton. Can you see her in a romance? 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you for hosting me today, Rita. I’m enjoying the comments!


  6. Sharla S

    Awesome author! Can’t wait to read the latest book!!


  7. Sharla S

    I’ve loved all of Julie Klassen’s books – the settings, the characters, the stories!!


  8. Heather Maki

    Pride and Prejudice is my favorite novel and I love all of Julie Klassen’s novels; she’s one of my favorite authors!


  9. P. Horn

    Love Julie Klassen’s books!!! Each one is wonderfully written. Especially looking forward to reading “The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill” (our family name is Bell 🙂 when I read Julie’s books its like you are right there with the characters. Looking forward to visiting this beautiful English village in my minds eye 😉


  10. Jessica

    Great questions! I liked the Mr. Darcy in another world question, though I am glad he did meet Elizabeth. 🙂 Love regency era books (especially Klassen books) and am excited about this one!


  11. Tami

    Pride and prejudice- the BBC version.


  12. Sheila L. Majczan

    I have only found time to read one or two of Julie’s book…it is a matter of time, not interest. This, as with all her others, does sound interesting. Thanks for sharing.


  13. Leslie Waters

    So I love Pride and Prejudice and all the fan fictions about it. It’s has also led to me having a love for all regency romance books.


  14. Pam K.

    I really enjoy Julie’s books. One British TV show I’ve been enjoying lately is Poldark.


  15. Sounds like my kinda story


  16. Janka H.

    As for the TV shows, Pride and Prejudice all the way!
    I am a new reader to Julie klassen´s (unbelievable, I know), although I bought several of her books – too many books, too little time 🙂 I hope I will redeem this “reading debt” this Christmas! 🙂


  17. Love learning about other time periods and places/events written in with the characters jaunting along unknowingly while we are perusing gaily amid their travels! I would love to be the gatherer of all of Julie Klassen’s writings for rereading. So interesting ~ I especially loved the first one I read: Lady of Milkweed Manor, followed by The Apothecary’s Daughter, and onward! Love, love, love her insight and surprising twists. Kathleen ~ Lane Hill House


  18. Arletta

    Oh, tea and a good Jane Austen type book is the best of giveaways! My fav is Colin Firth in Pride and Prejudice but I love most BBC productions. North and South is another good one. As is Lark Rise to Candleford. The list could go on and on.


  19. Cathy

    Appreciate the blog interview and the book sounds a very good read. One of the programs I always enjoyed watching was the British series Good Neighbors, which aired on PBS for a number of years.


  20. wilma



  21. Holly Ison

    I have read and love all of Julie Klassen’s books. My favorite is the Aecret of Pembrook Park.
    For the giveaway question, my favorite British movie is The Young Victoria. Just a beautiful story. I have always loved the romance between Cictoria and Albert.
    Thanks for a great blog and fabulous giveaway! ❤️


  22. Patricia Finnegan

    I love Julie Klassen’s books.

    In regards to the question my favorite British miniseries is Pride and prejudice, movie….I can;t choose just one but the harry Potter movies series.


  23. BeckyC

    I do not stray from Austen often but I can be persuaded. This looks good! Wonderful interview


  24. Kathy

    Favorite British series is a real hard one, because I’ve read so many that I’ve really liked. Kristi Ann Hunter’s books are some recent British fiction that I’ve enjoyed because they are light reads with a mix of humor and drama.


  25. I’ve heard great things about Klassen’s novels, and this one sounds really good!


  26. Impossible to name a favorite British book/TV/movie (apart from Austen, of course). I’m slowly working my way through Winston Graham’s Poldark series and thoroughly enjoying all the historical tidbits and lyrical descriptions. Loved the Julie Klassen novels I’ve read so far and very much looking forward this Ivy Hill series. What an incredible giveaway–The Lost Heiress and Not by Sight are wonderful books as well!


  27. Sheila L. Majczan

    As to favorite British movies: 1995 P&P. Would love to be able to watch CI-5 series, which I began watching on Netflix before it was taken down…it has many of the actors and/or actresses from other favorite British movies, i.e., Richard Armitage, Rupert Penry-Jones, Matthew Macfadyn, etc.


  28. Favorite British Series. . . All Creatures Great and Small. Just like it. Got me through hard times.


  29. Very interesting blurb and interview. From the blurb, Thora has reminded me of Mrs. Thornton 🙂
    I could not choose only one movie or series, I have to say that I love the BBC films such as the adaptations of Jane Austen for instance. ITV does nice ones though.


  30. Mary

    Another new author for me,Rita! This story sounds so good!
    Love to think of these two strong women,who despite their differences,
    begin to work together to build a stronger future.
    Thora sounds a little like Hannah Thornton,and this being the case,I already like and admire her!
    Thanks for the giveaway!


  31. Everything by Jane Austen is a favorite with me. The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill sounds delightful – and I love the cover!


  32. carylkane

    Wonderful interview with Julie. I love Downton Abbey and Sherlock.

    I’m looking forward to reading The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill.


  33. Pingback: Julie Klassen’s “The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill” ~ Blog Tour Schedule and Giveaways – Jane Austen in Vermont

  34. I’m a fan of most things British. That said, it’s hard to pick a favorite. I’ve read most of Julie Klassens books and loved them all. I love Jane Austen as well. Sherlock Holmes is my favorite British detective, but I also like Grantchester. LOL dark is pretty good as well.


  35. Linda D. McFarland

    Can’t think of a British television show that’s my favorite. I’d rather read than watch TV. However, The Inn of Ivyhill sounds very interesting. Thanks for the opportunity to win!


  36. conniepsaunders

    The classic Pride and Prejudice is a favorite but Roseanna White’s The Lost Heiress is excellent also! I look forward to reading Julie’s book!


  37. Amanda D

    I love Juloe Klassen’s novels and have read all except this one. To answer the giveaway question, my favorite is the BBC Pride and Prejudice miniseries with Colin Firth.


  38. Jo Ann

    Julie Klassen and good tea; a phenomenal combination for cozying up on a cold winter’s day!


  39. My most recent favorite British-set book is An Elegant Facade by Kristi Ann Hunter. She is a great writer, as is Julie Klassen. I like several of Julie’s books as well. Thanks for the giveaway and good luck everyone.


  40. MS Barb

    I don’t watch TV…& I can’t think of a British based book that I’ve read lately…I have enjoyed Cathy Gohlke books…


  41. Oh, always Austen.
    And then also Pride and Prejudice (the A&E version).
    Favorite TV show – Downton Abbey. Of course.


  42. Pingback: Guest Post ~ Julie Klassen on “A Jane Austen Promenade” ~ Blog Tour and Giveaways for “The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill” – Jane Austen in Vermont

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