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The Typewriter Girl Paperback – January 29, 2013
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Betsey Dobson’s career as a typewriter girl comes to an abrupt end after a run-in with a lecherous junior clerk. With no letter of reference and no money to pay the fare, she boards a train that will take her from London to Idensea, where she has a vague hope of a job. Fortunately, John Jones, a Welsh engineer with the Idensea Pier and Seaside Pleasure Building Company, puts her to work managing excursions. Betsey turns out to be a shrewd businesswoman, but the excursion scheme isn’t popular with the company’s owner, Sir Alton, who doesn’t like the idea of daytrippers mucking up his posh resort. Nor does Sir Alton care for the nearly completed pleasure railway that John is constructing. Theiralliance against Sir Alton helps stir up the attraction John and Betsey feel, but her old London lover and his near-engagement to a wealth heiress complicate matters. Readers should like Betsey, a feisty heroine who stands up for herself. The other characters and the book’s setting will also appeal. --Mary Ellen Quinn
About the Author
Alison Atlee spent her childhood re-enacting Little Women and trying to fashion nineteenth century wardrobes for her Barbie dolls. Happily, these activities turned out to be good preparation for writing historical novels. She now lives in Kentucky.
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Betsey enjoys her new job so much more than that of a typewriter girl. Even though being a typewriter girl was considered the ultimate job for a woman of her time it wasn’t enough for Betsey. Now with this job Betsey can show that she has the ability to do well in business even though she is a woman. Adding a little turmoil to her life is her attraction to John Jones who is seeing a wealthy woman who has much more to offer than Betsey. Yet once again Betsey is a woman not afraid to take what she wants and it isn’t long before sparks are flying between the two. One thing for sure is that John has never met a woman like Betsey and it intrigues him a great deal. Is it enough to bring the two together in love?
This novel is a love story and a pretty good one in that it’s complicated by the personalities of the two main characters of Betsey and John. They can be quite funny in their dealings with each other and I enjoyed the banter between the two. I also really liked Betsey with her independence and strength of character. It’s always a pleasure to read about women who were strong and didn’t want to settle for what it was believed all they were capable of.
All in all I enjoyed The Typewriter Girl. I found it a bit slow in places but still very enjoyable. I listened to the audio version which is narrated by Rosalyn Landor who I love. She is a fabulous narrator who brings so much to the telling of a story. She brought the time and place alive in my mind and she portrayed Betsey’s character perfectly. I don’t know if I would have enjoyed this novel as much in print as I did in audio because of Rosalyn Landor’s beautiful narration of it.
Recommended for fans of historical fiction with a splash of romance.