Books, Gardens, Dogs
The Typewriter Girl - Alison Atlee MY THOUGHTSLOVED ITBetsey works at an insurance company as a TypeWriter Girl, typing endlessly and monotonously day after day. She dreams of a better life and more independence, something women have little hope of during the nineteenth century. Moving against convention, Betsey take a chance when she is offered a job in Idensea on the ocean, booking tours for day trippers. She has no experience but enough gumption to try anything to get out of her rut and no chance for advancement. The problem Betsey really faces is that in order to get the job, she must have letters of reference and those cannot be obtained since she has been caught forging them at work. As she quits her job and takes a chance, traveling to Idensea and convincing John Jones that she is the perfect person to do the job. Once installed, Betsey does succeed but not without a few roadblocks and falling for Mr. Jones. There is a wide cast of characters and minor details wound around Betsey's drive to an independent life, most of which conspire against her as a young woman with liberated mind. I felt so angry at how she was treated by the patriarchal males but heartened by the fact that she never gave up even when she really had no hope. Not that Betsey was very innocent either, she would lie, cheat and steal to get ahead although she was more a victim than victor. There was no happy every after for Betsey, but she still stuck to her convictions, even though I think I would have been crushed by everything that happened to her. It seems no matter how much she tried to connive and outsmart the males, they just dominated over her with shear will and legal right. John Jones seemed to be truly in love with her but in the end, he himself, succumbed to convention and dumped her to marry for money. One point though, the girl he is marrying, ends up pregnant by another man, so in fact she is marrying down. BUT, true love does finally win at the end when John realizes his mistake before it is all to late and they do get their HEA. This should appeal to fans of Upstairs, Downstairs and Downton Abbey.

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