Anna's Reviews > Lillian Armfield: How Australia's first female detective took on Tilly Devine and the Razor Gangs and changed the face of the force

Lillian Armfield by Leigh Straw
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it was ok

This is a well researched book on an interesting subject. Lillian Armstrong was a trailblazer who clearly made an enormous contribution to establishing women in policing.

Unfortunately, the writing lets the book down. It is often very repetitive, with the result that I was skimming by the end of the book. I also questioned the inclusion of certain information, particularly the opening chapter about Armstrong's convict roots, which was interesting but not sufficiently relevant to warrant the level of detail. In other places, detailed information is included about particular crimes or social trends, but Armstrong's involvement is either not mentioned or seems to be included as an afterthought.

Information is presented thematically, rather than chronologically. I understand the rationale for this but jumping between different years and decades made it challenging to gain a sense of Armstrong's growing reputation and career progression during her thirty-plus years in the police force.

In spite of its flaws, this was still an interesting read, and provides insights into a part of women's history that was unfamiliar to me.
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Reading Progress

May 3, 2019 – Started Reading
May 3, 2019 – Shelved
May 10, 2019 – Finished Reading

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