Kathy 's Reviews > A Sense of Entitlement

A Sense of Entitlement by Anna Loan-Wilsey
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it was amazing
bookshelves: favorite-authors, historical-fiction, favorites, favorite-covers, highly-recommend, mystery

Already a committed fan to the Hattie Davish series after book #2, Anything But Civil, proved that Anna Loan-Wilsey cemented my addiction/committment, the third book continues to affirm the series' excellence. In my review of the second book, I spoke of the meticulous research and attention to detail that assures readers of an authentic, fascinating read in these novels set in the mid 1890s. I feel it is worth repeating here, in case that review has not been read. "There is no doubt that the author writes from a wealth of intelligence, meticulous research, and grand story-telling skills. Ms. Loan-Wilsey spins a fascinating murder mystery with immaculate attention to the minute details of a crime. Her amateur detective, Ms. Davish, is a traveling secretary by trade, but her intelligence and diligence propel her into realms normally beyond her station in life in the late 1800s when she is called upon to solve crimes connected to her assignments. With both of the current books in the series, the reader learns along with Hattie more about particular areas of history that affect her world of 1894. And, it is those gems of learning about an event and place in history that aren't in the forefront of history books. For those who love their mysteries combined with these delicious tidbits of history, Anna Loan-Wilsey's novels will definitely tickle your fancy."

The piece of the 1890s brought to life in A Sense of Entitlement is the summer season of the rich elite in Newport, Rhode Island. It is the place where the Astors and other top society have their summer cottages, which are in reality grand mansions only used six weeks out of the year. Hattie arrives in Newport as a part of Sir Arthur Windom-Greene's entourage. Sir Arthur has employed Hattie or recommended her to others as a traveling secretary since she first began her occupation. However, immediately upon arrival, Sir Arthur is called away to tend to his ailing father. Sir Arthur's wife, Lady Phillippa, is anxious to pawn Hattie off on someone else while he is gone, so she arranges for her to work as a social secretary for Mrs. Charlotte Mayhew. It doesn't take long for Hattie to realize that the high society families are rampant with secrets and conspiracies. With the appearance of the first dead body, Hattie is once more thrown into a world of detecting the truth from deception. To complicate matters, there is a labor agitator in town trying to stir up support for fair labor practices and greatly annoying the rich employers, including Hattie's. Everything becomes of importance in determining a murderer, and the police aren't eager to rock the boat of the upper classes. Hattie is her usual competent self, but she must deal with the prejudices and demands of people who think they are above the law. Of some comfort to Hattie is the presence of her two older lady friends, Miss Lizzie and Mrs. Lucy, but even that comes with a cutting edge. Dr. Walter Grice, who has shown interest in Hattie since her first adventure in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, has a mother named Julia Grice, and Julia is staying with the sisters Lizzie and Lucy in Newport. Mrs. Grice has plans to match her son up with a girl of the right "station" while in Newport, not a traveling secretary.

Anna Loan-Wilsey has created a series that gives the reader an authentic look into the world of the latter nineteenth century, encompassing all the constrictions of that era, but also a nod to the progress coming in the new century. It's a step back into a history on the cusp of change, and Hattie Davish is part of that exciting change.
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Reading Progress

January 31, 2014 – Shelved
January 31, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
January 31, 2014 – Shelved as: favorite-authors
January 31, 2014 – Shelved as: historical-fiction
May 7, 2014 – Started Reading
May 11, 2014 – Shelved as: favorites
May 11, 2014 – Shelved as: favorite-covers
May 11, 2014 – Shelved as: highly-recommend
May 11, 2014 – Shelved as: mystery
May 11, 2014 – Finished Reading

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