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13 July 2015

Anna Loan-Wilsey's Hattie Davish Mysteries (updated 07/16)

I had mentioned that I was veering off the original plan for my 20 Books of Summer in order to read a series that I unintentionally abandoned before I had even begun reading it -- Anna Loan-Wilsey's Hattie Davish Mysteries.

Set in the 1890s, the series follows Hattie Davish who is a travelling secretary. While she answers mostly to her wealthy English benefactor, Sir Arthur Windom-Greene, Hattie goes where her skills are needed. The first book saw us in Eureka Spring, Arkansas, where she was hired to work for the leader of a women's temperance group. Then she spent the holidays with Sir Arthur in Galena, Illinois, where he was researching a book on the Civil War. The third book took her to Newport, Rhode Island, for the summer season amidst the posh and powerful. Of course, every place she goes people end up dying and she ends up solving the mysteries surrounding the deaths.

It's not a mystery series for nothing, you know.

Let me just tell you: I love this series. Hattie is an absolute gem and the research that Loan-Wilsey has obviously put in to her writing is apparent with how richly detailed each setting is -- not only the physical locations and differences, but also the differences in population from place to place. Rather than rehashing the same locale with the same cast of characters over and over like so many series do, Hattie's profession gives us the opportunity to travel around the country -- while not losing a solid core of supporting characters who pop in for each book and believably so. You don't end up wondering why this one or that would possibly be here or there. It all just makes sense. There's a wonderful blend of history and humor and suspense and, yes, even a little romance.

I'm so horribly pleased that I accidentally requested the fourth book in the series from NetGalley!

A Deceptive Homecoming is the fourth book in the series and is set for release on July 28th. I'll start my NetGalley copy once I hit "publish" on this thanks. You can pre-order it from Amazon (or wherever) and if you start soon you should have plenty of time to read the first three before it arrives!


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July 16th Update:
I finished A Deceptive Homecoming before my pre-work nap Wednesday evening. I couldn't bring myself to sleep until it was done and it was SO worth losing sleep over! So many of the questions that I have had about Hattie's background were finally answered and, as an added bonus, one of the new characters shares my last name. It's almost as though I was so destined to be a fan that Anna Loan-Wilsey named a character for me before even knowing that I exist. I'm fairly certain that the reason why trilogies are so popular is that authors can't always figure out what to do with a character after that. Luckily, there's no sign of that being a problem here and I can't wait to see what Hattie has coming up next! (Well, I can wait ... because I have to ... but hopefully not for terribly long.)

1 comment:

  1. Anna Loan-Wilsey is very talented and so thorough in her research! I fell in love with Anything But Civil, which was the first book I read in the series, and I'm looking forward to the fourth installment!

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