Glamorous Illusions (Grand Tour 1) by Lisa T. Bergren

Lisa T. Bergren's Grand Illusions

It’s the summer of 1913 and Cora Kensington’s life on the family farm has taken a dark turn. Not only are the crops failing, but someone dear to Cora is failing as well.

In one fateful afternoon, a stranger comes to call, and Cora discovers a terrible secret about her past.a secret that will radically change her future.

Cora is invited to take the “Grand Tour” of Europe, a journey intended to finish a person’s eduction, to solidify an understanding of ancient culture and contemporary refinement. As she travels from England to France, with kin she’s never known, Cora encounters the blessings of a family name, as well as the curses. But when an unbidden love begins to form, she realizes the journey is only beginning..

The first book in the Grand Tour series will take readers on a journey of cultural refinement, but moreover, explores what truly informs a person’s sense of identity.

(Synopsis via David C. Cook and image via Goodreads)

Book Details:
Publisher: David C. Cook
Genre: Fiction / Christian Fiction / Historical Fiction
Published: June 1, 2012
Format: Paperback, 314 pages
ISBN: 1434764303
Source: Purchased


Lisa T. Bergren’s books and writing have always been satisfying reads. Grand Illusions is no exception.

Combine Bergren’s writing, historical fiction, and the image of families making the illustrious and educational “Grand Tour” of Europe in the early 1900s and you undoubtedly have a winning story to share.

Cora Kensington’s character was drawn from the poorest of Montana farm families to experience the Grand Tour with family members she has never met. People who are diametrically opposed to everything Cora has ever known. Yet, Cora knows exactly who she is meant to be, or so she believes.

Cora is torn between staying behind to manage what is left of the failing family farm as her father is ill and can no longer work the farm. Her parents are insistent upon her going as a certain stranger has appeared and offered the trip of a lifetime to Cora. What Cora uncovers is that this stranger is part of a secret from her past. An uncomfortable secret.

On the trip Cora encounters the best and the worst of family relationships. And she becomes enamored with a love she did not expect, while another waits in the shadows of her life feeling himself unfit and too poor compared to his competition.

As always, Bergren’s plot, characters, and scenes are well crafted. A book easy to get caught up in, Glamorous Illusions lives up to the author’s reputation and the book’s title.


RecommendationLovers of historical fiction and the early 1900s, as well as Europe during that time period, will thoroughly enjoy Glamorous Illusions. There is really nothing more that needs to be said about this book.

Author Lisa T. BergrenLisa Tawn Bergren is the best-selling, award-winning author of over 40 books, with more than 2.5 million copies sold. She recently finished a teen series called River of Time (WATERFALL, CASCADE, TORRENT, BOURNE & TRIBUTARY and soon will be done with the last installment, DELUGE). She’s also written the Grand Tour Series (GLAMOROUS ILLUSIONS, GRAVE CONSEQUENCES, GLITTERING PROMISES), and is now at work on the REMNANTS Series. REMNANTS: SEASON OF WONDER, releases in April 2014.

Lisa’s time is split between managing home base, writing, consulting and helping Tim with his business. Her husband Tim is a sculptor of ducks-out-of-fenceposts (, graphic designer and musician. They have three kids–Olivia (19), Emma (16) and Jack (11).

All five of the Bergrens make their home in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

(Bio and image via Goodreads)

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