Read A Lack of Temperance by Anna Loan-Wilsey Online


From Anna Loan-Wilsey comes the first installment of a new historical mystery series featuring Hattie Davish, a traveling secretary who arrives in a small Ozark town only to discover her new employer has disappeared. . .On the eve of the heated presidential election of 1892, Miss Hattie Davish arrives in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, a scenic resort town where those without thFrom Anna Loan-Wilsey comes the first installment of a new historical mystery series featuring Hattie Davish, a traveling secretary who arrives in a small Ozark town only to discover her new employer has disappeared. . .On the eve of the heated presidential election of 1892, Miss Hattie Davish arrives in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, a scenic resort town where those without the scent of whiskey on their breath have the plight of temperance on their tongues. Summoned for her services as a private secretary, Hattie is looking forward to exploring the hills, indulging her penchant for botany--and getting to know the town's handsome doctor. But it's hard to get her job done with her employer nowhere to be found. . .An army of unassuming women wielding hatchets have descended on the quiet Ozark village, destroying every saloon in their path--and leaving more than a few enemies in their wake. So when their beloved leader, Mother Trevelyan, is murdered, it's easy to point fingers. Now that she's working for a dead woman, Hattie turns to her trusty typewriter to get to the truth. And as she follows a trail of cryptic death threats, she'll come face to face with a killer far more dangerous than the Demon Rum. . ."A wonderful read from a welcome addition to the genre. This one shouldn't be missed--it has it all!" --Emily Brightwell...

Title : A Lack of Temperance
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780758276346
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 264 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

A Lack of Temperance Reviews

  • Kathy
    2019-01-27 13:31

    One of the best aspects of reading for me is the introduction to new places and historical connections. Anna Loan-Wilsey in her debut novel has given me both. I admit that I wasn't overly excited with the setting being in Arkansas, as I didn't think I would be that interested in it, but Eureka Springs was fascinating. That should teach me to make unsubstantiated locale judgements. I found myself getting up out of bed the night I started reading it and using the computer to look up the area to better picture in my mind all the unusual street configurations and spring locations. To my delight, the author has links and information on her page about Eureka, even a map of how it would have appeared in 1892, the time setting of the novel. I do, however, wish that the map had been included in the book. It would have been helpful in imagining Hattie Davish's, the main character, wanderings throughout the town.Hattie Davish is a traveling secretary who arrives in Eureka to serve as secretary for Mother Trevelyan, president of the women's temperance movement. Eureka is the site of the national meeting for the American Women's Temperance Coalition timed to coincide with a vote on Proposition 203 to criminalize the sale of alcohol. Before Hattie can meet her new employer, the temperance leader is murdered. A local bar owner is charged with the murder, but Hattie doesn't believe he is guilty and sets out to do some investigating on her own. With her meticulous eye for detail and order, she uses her typewriter to keep track of events and people, compiling a list of questions to try and connect the dots. She becomes acquainted with some interesting characters during her query, the delightful older sisters, Lucy and Lizzie, and the charming Dr. Walter Grice. Secrets are buried deep in this historical mystery, and Hattie encounters much personal risk, but she is as diligent in the undertaking of detective work as she is in her secretarial duties. She even discovers a few things about herself in the process.Anna Loan-Wilsey has written an interesting, engaging historical mystery that left me looking forward to the next installment of the Hattie Davish series. 1892 turned out to be a very good year.

  • Jaylia3
    2019-02-02 06:10

    With its picturesque setting, lively historical time period, and personality-filled cast of characters this cozy mystery is just as fun as it sounds. A Lack of Temperance is the first book in a series featuring botany-loving Hattie Davis who works as traveling secretary--which is a superb occupation to give a character for at least three reasons. Going from place to place to earn her own living means Hattie is forced to be more independent and resourceful than many of her 1892 peers, it’s a job that seems to straddle class lines, much like a governess in the earlier part of the nineteenth century, creating lots of plot-worthy frisson, and her peripatetic lifestyle allows every book in the series to be set in a different charming and fascinating locale, though fortunately many of the wonderful characters from this first entry manage to stick around in later volumes.As A Lack of Temperance opens Hattie has been traveling by train and is just arriving in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, a mountainous resort town with lush vegetation, numerous health-promoting natural springs, and steep winding streets and walkways all so temptingly described that I am now determined to visit. Hattie hasn’t had a chance to meet her employer Mrs. Trevelyan yet and is just settling into her hotel when a cry of “Fire!” draws her out into the street. But it’s not the hotel that’s ablaze. A group of hatchet wielding women in town for a temperance meeting are smashing whiskey barrels pulled from a saloon that’s now burning and “Mother Trevelyan”, Hattie’s new boss, is front and center leading the destruction. When Mrs.Trevelyan is found dead the next morning Hattie pulls out her typewriter and uses her personal secretary skills of organization, summation, and careful attention to detail in an attempt to solve the murder, which takes her all over town and involves her with a wide variety of locals and visitors, including a handsome doctor. To mull things over and attempt to relax in her downtime Hattie roams the surrounding verdant hills adding specimens to her plant collection, a hobby that helps her discover more clues but also puts her danger. Characters have complex sometimes unexpected backstories, only gradually discovered by Hattie and the reader, that give the story a nice heft. As far as the mystery goes, I didn’t guess the killer so I didn’t find it predictable. Hattie’s own story hasn’t been completely revealed by the end of the book, there’s more to learn about both her history and Sir Arthur Windom-Greene, a man who stays off stage in this episode but who acts as a sort of sponsor helping Hattie secure employment. A Lack of Temperance was a vacation-like treat to read and I’m looking forward to starting the next book in the series.

  • Jonathan
    2019-02-03 12:18

    Really 3.5 stars, but I rounded up.Overall a solid book about the temperance movement's gathering in Arkansas. I enjoyed it, however I felt that the reveal of the killer wasn't a surprise. I will read the next one.

  • Cathy Cole
    2019-02-02 12:09

    First Line: It was chaos.It's 1892. Self-described typewriter Hattie Davish has been paid to work for a Mrs. Edwina Trevelyan of Eureka Springs, Arkansas. She boards the train in Kansas City, and when she arrives in the resort town, the very first thing she sees is the American Women's Temperance Coalition (AWTC) trying their best to demolish a saloon. By the time she gets to the Arcadia Hotel, Hattie has learned that Mrs. Trevelyan is the president of the AWTC.After a short battle of wills with a AWTC member, Hattie assumes control of Mrs. Trevelyan's correspondence, but the woman herself seems to have disappeared. Hattie does as much as she can with the letters and telegrams, then she sets out to find her employer. Shortly thereafter, she finds the woman's body, and when an arrogant woman in the temperance organization tells her she can go home, Hattie refuses. She's been paid for a week's work, and she's going to stay to help find her employer's killer. What Hattie hasn't planned for is that-- by her conscientiousness, she's putting her own life in danger.Author Anna Loan-Wilsey sets her stage immediately by having Hattie Davish witness the demolishing of a saloon. I can't remember any other fiction book I've read using the background of the women's temperance movement, and as I began reading A Lack of Temperance, I had to wonder why. All the various members created a microcosm of motives, which is perfect for a mystery.Her choice of Eureka Springs, Arkansas was also inspired. The Victorian resort town's treacherous, twisting streets, steep stairs, luxurious hotels, and many hot springs fired my imagination and created many locations for Hattie to investigate.Hattie Davish is a young, spirited woman who-- as a traveling private secretary-- is a bit ahead of her time. She's a workaholic who can forget to eat or rest, and in her spare time she loves to explore, finding plants to add to her catalogue. Hattie is meticulous in her work habits, to the point of being what we would call OCD today. Throughout her investigation, she settled her mind by sitting at her typewriter creating lists of facts and lists of questions. It's no wonder this young woman attracts all sorts of other characters to her-- including handsome young doctor, Walter Grice.I did find the identity of the killer to be a bit obvious, but as a debut book with an 1890s traveling secretary as the main character, I think this series is set up for a very interesting, enjoyable run. I look forward to reading more books about Hattie and to learning more about her mysterious benefactor, Sir Arthur Windom-Greene.

  • Jan Blazanin
    2019-02-16 11:17

    A LACK OF TEMPERANCE, the first novel in a planned series, is a well-plotted historical mystery set in 1892. Hattie Davish is a traveling secretary whose sponsor sends her on assignment to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, to be personal secretary to Mother Trevelyan who is the leader of the Temperance Society. Hattie never has a chance to meet her employer because she mysteriously disappears after storming a saloon with a hatchet. When Mother Trevelyan's body is literally uncovered, Hattie becomes involved in the search for her killer.This novel features convincing historical details, a spunky heroine who stays true to the era, a large cast of murder suspects, and numerous red herrings before the murderer is revealed. Fans of historical mysteries are sure to enjoy this tale.

  • Christine
    2019-01-27 09:22

    Hattie Davish arrives on the train from Kansas City to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, eager to start her new assignment as personal secretary to Mrs. Trevelyan. Hattie is shocked to learn “Mother Trevelyan” is the leader of a woman’s temperance movement and isn’t afraid to express her strong views against liquor by taking an ax or setting fire to local saloons. Hattie never gets the opportunity to meet her new employer, because Mother Trevelyan is missing and later discovered to have been murdered. Hattie puts all of her skills to use in finding out who murdered the temperance leader, who appears to have had secrets that may have led to her murder.I loved the unique setting of this book, which takes place in 1892 in the quaint resort town of Eureka Springs, which is still known today for its healing waters. This is an interesting time and place in history, and the temperance movement is not just a backdrop, but is at the heart of the mystery.Hattie is a brave and determined heroine who isn’t afraid to face opposition to do what’s right. With her would-be employer missing, Hattie decides she is going to find out what really happened to Mrs. Trevelyan and nothing will stop her from that self-assigned task. The story takes as many twists and turns as the windy streets of Eureka Springs, which keeps the reader guessing as to Mrs. Trevelyan’s true fate. Unfortunately, the story does slow down toward the middle and sometimes becomes hard to follow. As Hattie gets closer to finding the murderer, the story picks up again. Two people who assist Hattie in her investigation are two elderly sisters Miss Lucy and Miss Lizzie who love to gossip as much as they love their work in the temperance coalition. Their scenes lighten up the book and the characters are great friends and allies to Hattie. I also enjoyed the possible romance between Hattie and Dr. Walter Grice. The author transports the reader to a simpler time when describing Hattie and Walter’s date – a lovely picnic with cold fried chicken, cheese, pound cake, and the couple taking turns reading poetry to each other. While the book moved a bit slowly in some parts, I love the premise of the book and think this is a series with a lot of potential. At the end of the book, Hattie talks about moving on to her next assignment. Hopefully, wherever her next job leader her, she will be getting a few visitors from Eureka Springs.I received this book from NetGalley through the courtesy of Kensington Books in exchange for an honest review.

  • Bonnie
    2019-01-28 13:28

    A Lack of Temperance is the first installment of a new historical mystery series featuring Hattie Davish, a travelling secretary who arrives by coach in a small Ozark town named Eureka Springs, Arkansas. It is the eve of the heated presidential election of 1892 and also the vote on temperance. A group of women have sojourned to Eureka to attend the American Women's Temperance Coalition. They wear blue and carry axes which the leader, Mrs. Trevelyan, is busy using on a saloon when Hattie arrives. Mrs. Trevelyan goes missing and she is the one who sent for Hattie to act as her secretary. Hattie is the one who found her stuffed into a trunk in the basement of the famous Acadia hotel where Hattie and the other members are staying. Hattie turns to her trusty typewriter to get to the truth. Much detail is given to the locale of the famous springs set in cliffs that rise five stories into the hills. When Hattie goes exploring, she is pushed by someone and falls injuring herself. This is how she meets Dr. Grice who ends up being a love interest. A great read that promises to ensure many more adventures by Hattie.

  • Kathy
    2019-02-10 11:14

    The setting of the story, Eureka Springs, Ark. is wonderful. I had visited there for a flying one day stop several years back. Missed so much. Now I want to go back and really explore the place.The book features Hattie Davish, a "typewriter" (secretary) in the 1890's who is hired by the head of a temperance organization having its convention in Eureka Springs. Soon there is dead body and Hattie is right in the middle of it assisted by the local doctor, and by two busy body elderly sisters, Lucy and Lizzie. Lots of fun.

  • Bookhounds
    2019-02-03 08:24

    This is a fun, light-hearted mystery with historical characters that give it a sense of the past. Easy to read, you could knock this off in an afternoon. I'm hoping the author continues to develop her character and that we will see more like this in the future. I'm one of those people who follow an author's characters down through the series - if I like the book. I'd recommend this book to all who like a diversion from everyday stress.

  • Kathy
    2019-02-07 05:06

    Light, quizzical and fun to read: this Hattie Davis adventure fills the bill for a quick read.

  • Karol
    2019-02-04 07:17

    Interesting mystery, set in the days before prohibition. Most of the characters were involved in the Women's Christian Temperance Union.

  • Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
    2019-02-17 11:27

    For more of my book reviews please visit my blog, The Baking Bookworm ( Thoughts: I really enjoy historical mysteries when I can learn a bit about history while enjoying an entertaining 'who dunnit'. Kind of a two for one deal, if you will. A little knowledge wrapped up into a nice, cozy mystery. Well, this book fits the bill. I'm a little embarrassed to say that I have pretty much no knowledge of the temperance movement in the late 1900's. When I say 'pretty much' I mean zilch. Nada. Rien. Luckily for me, Ms Loan-Wilsey is very adept at vividly painting a picture of this highly emotional era. It was a time of zealous actions of some of the temperance members in the name of their cause as well as the raw emotions from the people who wanted these busybodies to stay out of their right to imbibe or not. Kind of a perfect era to place a murder, right?If an author is going to snag me with their mystery I have to like the main character. I like a strong main character who is relatable. Hattie, I'm happy to report, is an interesting and confident main character who is refreshingly ahead of her time. She's an intelligent young woman who is very non-nonsense about her job and has a strong work ethic. She gets offended when she's referred to as 'just a typewriter' because she views herself as so much more and goes on to prove this by solving the murder of her employer.The secondary characters, especially the deliciously gossipy sisters Miss Lucy and Miss Lizzy, round out a good cast of characters. There is mild romance of sorts which has begun between Hattie and Dr Grice but it doesn't hinder the pace of the mystery. I'm interested to see if he will be able to be part of future books.I look forward to reading more books in this series. I'm intrigued by the era as well as seeing what other situations Hattie will be put in since her profession can lead to so many different possibilities for future storylines. I'm also curious about Hattie's mysterious benefactor, the elusive Arthur Windom-Greene, and look forward to learning more of how they met.The negatives that I had about this book are quite mild. The pace, at times, was a little slow and the identity of the murderer wasn't a big shock for me but overall I quite enjoyed this first book of this new series. Recommended.My Rating: 3.5/5 starsNote: My sincere thanks to Anna Loan-Wilsey and Kensington Publishing for providing me with this free Advanced Reading Copy in exchange for my honest review.

  • Celia
    2019-02-04 09:13

    After having read A March to Remember, the most recent book in the Hattie Davish series, I knew I had to go back to the beginning to learn more about Hattie. A Lack of Temperance does not disappoint. Hattie goes to Eureka Springs, Arkansas at the request of a Mrs. Trevelyan, a friend of Sir Arthur, her mentor, and a mystery ensues from the beginning. Mrs. Trevelyan is nowhere to be found when Hattie checks into the Arcadia Hotel, and is told her services are no longer needed by a member of the American Women's Temperance Coalition of which Mrs. Trevelyan is President. Hattie has already been paid for her services and is determined to find Mrs. Trevelyan and get to the bottom of things. She ends up witnessing an attack on a saloon by the AWTC that looks like it is being led by Mrs. Trevelyan with an axe, smashing and attempting to destroy the saloon. Hattie is unable to get near the evasive Mrs. T, but is even more determined to find her -- which she later does, as an unfortunate victim of foul play. Did someone in the AWTC want Mrs. Trevelyan dead because of her single minded and sometimes violent means of carrying out the temperance movement? As Hattie sets out to solve the mystery, we learn more about her character and determination, as well as her seriousness about her job, which many people think is unimportant. As Hattie searches the picturesque town of Eureka Springs, as well as the healing springs there, in her search for clues, she finds herself in peril -- is she getting too close to the real killer? I really enjoyed this book and found Hattie to be a wonderful and strong protagonist. I enjoyed her morning hikes and searches for plants for her plant press. All characters were well developed, and I especially enjoyed Walter and Miss Lizzie and Miss Lucy. I was kept guessing until the end as this book had several twists and turns, I highly recommend this book and can't wait to join Hattie on her next adventure in Book 2 of the series.

  • Book of Secrets ☘
    2019-01-22 05:12

    A LACK OF TEMPERANCE was a delightful read, and I'm not just saying that because I adore Eureka Springs. :) I love Hattie Davish as the amateur sleuth in this historical mystery. She is a savvy Victorian career woman working as a secretary to some very important and influential people.In November of 1892, Hattie's work takes her to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, a resort town famous for its healing mineral springs. It's also the meeting place for the American Women's Temperance Coalition, a group passionate about banning the sale of alcohol. Hattie's been hired to be the personal secretary for the AWTC's leader, a Mrs. Edwina Trevelyan. Not long after she arrives, Hattie's new boss is murdered, and she's not convinced the police have the right suspect in custody. With a little help from the town's gorgeous (and single) doctor, Hattie launches an investigation of her own.Like I said before, I love visiting Eureka Springs, so I was thrilled to step back in time and see what it was like when it was new. The author's descriptions of the hotels, steep mountain roads and natural springs were spot on. I could easily picture myself there.The mystery itself was intriguing, and I enjoyed how it tied in with the temperance movement of that time period. I know that Carrie Nation was a radical member of this movement, often resorting to violence (carrying around a hatchet) to get her point across, and that she had a home in Eureka Springs in her later years. Edwina Trevelyan's character reminded me very much of Carrie Nation, so it's clear the author did her research for this book.A LACK OF TEMPERANCE is the first book in the Hattie Davish Mystery series, and I'm eagerly awaiting the next installment!Review copy courtesy of the publisher.

  • Susan
    2019-02-02 08:25

    It's 1892 and Hattie Davish has been newly employed as a secretary to temperance movement leader Mrs. Edwina Trevelyan of Eureka Springs. But before she has a chance to officially meet her Mrs Trevelyan goes missing. Hattie decides to find out why and where.An enjoyable start to a new mystery series. Interesting to see which other characters if any transfer to the next book.

  • Toni
    2019-02-04 07:26

    I was a little skeptical when I first picked up this book; the beginning was a little rocky for me, personally, but the rest of the book more than made up for it! Hattie Davish is a traveling typewriter whose latest employer is the pugnacious Edwina Trevelyan, leader of the American Woman's Temperance Coalition. The AWTC is holding its annual summit meeting in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, and while the town itself is known for its peacefulness and healing spring water, Mrs. Trevelyan's call to war against intoxication has everyone in a tizzy. Among the chaos, Mrs. Trevelyan is found dead, stuffed in a trunk, by Hattie. She doesn't mean to get involved, but with the police rude and incompetent, she can't help but step in. And with the help of the handsome and kind town doctor, Dr. Walter Grice, the pair might just find out what happened to the vocal old woman!I love love LOVE historical mysteries, but this was my first one set in America, and I must say, I'm so glad I picked it up! Despite the morbidness of the murder, I found that the book made me feel cozy and safe when I read it. Hattie and Walter are wonderful together, and, although annoying at times, I truly enjoyed the company of Miss Lizzie and Miss Lucy. The one drawback I have is that I guessed early on who the killer was and ended up being right, but finding out the how and why was no less enjoyable because of it. On to the next one!

  • Christine Lussier
    2019-01-25 05:28

    A "new to me" series, was on my "to read" booklist & finally available as a kindle download through our library. I am going to try the next book to see what I really think.

  • Ginger
    2019-01-22 10:10

    Hattie Davish is a travelling secretary whose work takes her from place to place where she encounters murders and mysteries. In A Lack of Temperance, Hattie is sent to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, to work for the leader of a temperance union meeting in that fair city. The woman is nowhere to be found, and when she is found, she is no one for whom to be working – because she is dead. Hattie’s orderly thought processes and her disciplined office skills stand her in good stead as she puzzles her way towards solving the mystery. But there are distractions from her work and her sleuthing as Hattie makes time to gather plant specimens in the environs and gets acquainted with the town doctor. Hattie is a most likable heroine, the descriptions of Eureka Springs and its spas and hotels are intriguing, and the historical details about the town and about the temperance movement add greatly to the overall texture of a most readable mystery. Highly recommended.

  • Cindy
    2019-02-15 12:32

    Hattie Davish arrives at her new job as a secretary to an older woman. But whe she get there, she finds that her employer is missing and she's right in the middle of a storm over temperance. Her employer is the presidents of a large protest organization and they're hosting a rally that week. But her new boss turns up dead and the police haven't got much to go on. Hattie better figure out what's going on before she become a victim herself.I liked this series debut. The setting, Arkansas in the late 19th century, was well done. I liked the resort town. It's certainly one that's not overdone, so I hope that the writer keeps the books in the same area. But I wasn't as crazy about the main character as I was about the setting. I felt that she was a little inconsistent and times and not especially likeable. Still, she might grow on me.Overall, recommended. I received this book for review from LT Early Reviewers program.

  • Christa
    2019-02-13 12:16

    I really enjoyed this historical mystery. I liked the character of Hattie Davish. The storyline caught and held my interest, and I liked the Ozark Mountains are setting. I thought this was a great beginning to a new series, and I look forward to reading more about Hattie.Hattie Davish arrives in the Ozarks to find that her new employer is the leader of a women's temperance movement which is causing chaos in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. When Hattie's new employer is murdered, Hattie investigates to try to find out who had reason to kill this woman who was heavily involved in the temperance movement.Hattie was a great character, and I enjoyed the storyline. I liked the descriptions of 1892 Eureka Springs, and will be looking forward to more from this series. I receieved this book as an ARC through Netgalley.

  • Samantha
    2019-01-23 13:36

    I absolutely LOVED this book. I picked this book b/c it takes place in Eureka Springs, AR, which is near (literally) and dear to my heart. Miss Hattie Davish is delightful. I adore her. Miss Davish is called to work as a secretary for Mother Treveleyan, the leader of the temperance movement (and based on Carrie Nation, I'm certain). Before Hattie has even met her new employer face to face, it seems Mother Treveleyan has gone missing. Hattie becomes invested in solving the mystery behind her disappearance, and while investigating, stumbles upon the dead body of Treveleyan. Lots of colorful characters, a strong plot, a local setting I'm familiar with, and a fabulous heroine make this book a great one!

  • Barb
    2019-02-06 08:16

    This is the first in the Hattie Davish series, which takes place in the early part of the 20th century. Hattie is a typewriter, and as such, she finds employment with people who need manuscripts typed or general secretarial work. In A Lack of Temperance we meet the women of a temperance group who are attempting to remove saloons from a small town in Arkansas. Anna Loan-Wilsey has a wonderful way of teaching her readers all about a subject while simultaneously involving us in solving a murder or two and presenting a delightful romance. The characters are well-drawn, and the scenes described so completely that you feel like you've been there. Pacing and plotting are enough to keep you breathing hard and reading late.

  • Alexandra Scarborough
    2019-02-10 13:34

    An enjoyable first novel in this mystery series, with a likable protagonist, enough mystery to keep me engaged, and a very fun historical backdrop. I rather liked the setting of Eureka Springs, Arkansas in the late Victorian era, and Hattie's plucky independence was refreshing. It also served well as a self-contained story, and I prefer that--I don't like being made to feel I have to read the next book in the series if I choose not to. I likely will, though, because I am curious about Hattie's history, and look forward to learning about her next work location. No heavy-hitting or gripping novel, but a pleasurable read, which is what it's intended to be.

  • Sandybear76
    2019-01-28 12:35

    Hattie is a typewriter girl and has a new job for the president of a temperance league. Hattie arrives in Eureka Springs and gets busy organizing the mail and typing responses while waiting to meet her new employer. The next day, Hattie enjoys a hike near the springs and spends the rest of the day doing more typing and looking for her missing boss. Hattie earlier the next day does find her missing boss but it is not pretty. A mystery in history, when women were trying to get others to accept temperance and to vote for no alcohol. It is the first book by the author but more books are planned in the series.

  • Rachel
    2019-01-28 08:29

    I adore the whole Hattie Davish series, even though I started with book 3 and worked backwards, I enjoyed each one. I have just completed A Lack of Temperance and as each book is a stand-alone mystery, it didn't matter that it was the first in the series. You will fall in love with Hattie Davish who somehow manages to get herself involved in solving murders and I enjoy following her techniques even though she sometimes gets herself in trouble. You will love this series, no matter in what order you read them. I look forward to A Deceptive Homecoming in July with a very special character for Hattie to interact with. Wish I could give the series 10 stars!

  • Amy
    2019-02-06 12:09

    I liked this book. The historical aspect of it was fascinating to me. I loved that she was a typist and traveled with her job to new locations . There was also enough hints of other scenarios and acquaintances that would provide interest in other books. Criticism would be that the character development wasn't the best. Some of the attempt at emotions felt wooden and lacked the right amount of explanation. The main character also made a lot of lists and insisted that she was organized, but some of her actions weren't consistent with that characteristic. I am hoping the author writes another story.

  • Linda C
    2019-02-13 13:19

    Hattie Davish is a secretary (typewriter) in 1892, who has been hired by Mother Edwina Trevelyan, President of the American Women's Temperance Coalition. Before Hattie is even introduced to the lady she is murdered and Hattie begins investigating. With the help of a local doctor, Walter Grice she looks into the whereabouts of several of the ladies attending their convention and a couple of men who may be being blackmailed by the victim. There are several interesting secondary characters and Hattie is a very appealing heroine. The book is a good picture of the times and the life of a single woman attempting a living on her own. I am looking forward to reading more of this series.

  • MikeDavis
    2019-01-30 09:18

    This mystery held some additional interest for me because I'm familiar with the location of Eureka Springs, Arkansas, though it didn't play much of a factor in the overall story. The thread unravels gradually and ended with a bit more complexity than I expected from early pages. Although there is nothing ground-breaking with most mystery novels these days, this was a well written book and a fine mystery, especially for a debut author. I suspect we'll see more from this author.This was an early review copy from the publisher received in exchange for a review.

  • Susan
    2019-01-17 08:28

    Private secretary Hattie Davish is hired, sight unseen, to work for the leader of the American Women's Temperance Coalition, Mother Trevelyan. The AWTC is meeting in Eureka Springs, AK and ardent plant collector Hattie is glad for the chance to see new flora. But her employer seems to be missing, and the police think she's fled after setting a local tavern on fire. There's a handsome doctor who takes more than a professional interest in Hattie on hand, and a number of AWTC members who are jockeying for position in the organization.

  • Christine Roberts
    2019-02-05 13:26

    This book was my first foray into the "Historical Mystery" genre, and I enjoyed myself a great deal. Hattie Davish is spunky and modern, reminding the reader of Jo March or Anne Shirley. The only reason I gave this book 4 stars instead of five, is that there was a little too much drawing out of the introductory part of the book, the first fifty pages or so had me thinking I wasn't going to enjoy it. I'm glad I stuck it out, I'll be looking for the next book in the Hattie Davish series at my local library.