Author: Alison Atlee

+Blog Book Tour+ The Typewriter Girl by Alison Atlee

Posted Thursday, 28 August, 2014 by jorielov , , , 1 Comment

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The Typewriter Girl by Alison Atlee

Published By: Gallery Books ()
(an imprint of 
Simon & Schuster),

Official Author Websites: Site | @AlisonAtlee | Facebook
Available Formats: Paperback, Hardcover, Ebook, & Audiobook (only on Audible)

Converse via: #TypewriterGirlBlogTour, #TheTypeWriterGirl OR #TypeWriterGirl

Acquired Book By:

I was selected to be a tour stop on the “The Typewriter Girl” virtual book tour through HFVBT: Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours. I received a complimentary copy of the book direct from the publisher Gallery Books, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Inspired to Read:

My original reaction to joining the blog tour: I am thrilled to peaches that this is available for joining as a blog tour, as I was just the other day commenting on Twitter how thrilled I was to have discovered the novel! I was going to have to ILL it into my local library from out of the area, too! Wow. And, now I have the lovely chance of hosting the author & the book for the tour!!! THANK YOU!!!  My enthused reply to Ms. Bruno was due to the fact I had seen her tweeting about this particular tour alighting on the schedule — I took flight immediately to see if my local library held a copy and then, soon thereafter learnt I could (ILL) inter-library loan the novel instead! This is a resource I use quite a heap as it allows you to check-out materials that your local branch cannot always purchase. Mine is part of a consortium of libraries in my state (not even half which surprised me!), making borrowing books, audiobooks, musical albums, seasonal dvds (tv series), and motion pictures quite easy!

I was excited initially about the era this story takes place (the Victorian era is singularly my bonefide favourite next to the Regency!), and the entire synopsis felt like a story I could curl into and enjoy with my whole heart. In some ways, I wasn’t sure what was more exciting the fact that I had found a story where a character was using a typewriter on her job or the fact that I had found a strong female lead character set in an age where being strong was not as kosher as being passive.

I will admit when it came time to read the novel for the tour, I felt a bit apprehensive as through my research for the author interview I hosted ahead of this review, I learnt that the author has the occasion to use strong language in her writings. For regular readers and visitors alike, this will not come as a surprise when I say that I have the tendency to give out very few allowances for vulgarity in literature, as generally speaking I am not keen on the inclusion at all. So much so, I generally post a ‘fly in the ointment’ on a novel that pushes the envelope for me in this regard. Hence my apprehension and second-guessing about diving into this particular story! My thoughts were turnt a bit as I had read other interviews leading up to asking my own questions (as I always strive to ask different questions than the ones that are always asked), where readers were already voicing their own thoughts in this regard.

+Blog Book Tour+ The Typewriter Girl by Alison AtleeThe Typewriter Girl
by Alison Atlee
Source: Publisher via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours
Narrator: Rosalyn Landor

When Bet­sey Dob­son dis­em­barks from the Lon­don train in the sea­side resort of Idensea, all she owns is a small valise and a canary in a cage. After an attempt to forge a let­ter of ref­er­ence she knew would be denied her, Bet­sey has been fired from the typ­ing pool of her pre­vi­ous employer. Her vig­or­ous protest left one man wounded, another jilted, and her char­ac­ter per­ma­nently besmirched.

Now, with­out money or a ref­er­ence for a new job, the future looks even bleaker than the deba­cle she left behind her.

But her life is about to change … because a young Welsh­man on the rail­road quay, wait­ing for another woman, is the one finally will­ing to believe in her.

Mr. Jones is inept in mat­ters of love, but a genius at things mechan­i­cal. In Idensea, he has con­structed a glit­ter­ing pier that astounds the wealthy tourists. And in Bet­sey, he rec­og­nizes the ideal tour man­ager for the Idensea Pier & Plea­sure Build­ing Company.

After a life­time of guard­ing her secrets and break­ing the rules, Bet­sey becomes a force to be reck­oned with. Together, she and Mr. Jones must find a way for her to suc­ceed in a soci­ety that would reject her, and fig­ure the price of sur­ren­der­ing to the tides of love.

Genres: Historical Fiction

Places to find the book:

Also by this author:

Published by Audible Studios, Gallery Books, Simon & Schuster

on 31st January, 2013

Format: Paperback

Length: 12 hours and 39 minutes

Pages: 384

Author Biography:Alison Atlee

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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My Review of The Typewriter Girl:

I became a bit disenchanted reading this novel when I first started to read Chapter 1 — not only because of the word included on page 2 (which I highlight below) but because of Betsey’s demeanor and her air of entitlement. She carries herself as if she is devoid of any perimeter or courtesy of character. This is notwithstanding a fatal flaw for any character to have, but she is writ in such a way as to elicit a far different story than the one I first envisioned myself reading. Where I felt I would be arriving in Victorian England on the footheels of a strong female lead working her way through the working class ranks and proving her worth based on her work and/or her ability to rise above her circumstances, I instead am greeted by a rather crude and violent woman who feels she is detached from ordinary society to the brink that her actions do not befit consequence. She has a very distinct and disfavourable outlook on life, and her only mission appears to be getting ahead without much effort involved. I fear, as her tendency is leaning towards being more vocal and vulgar in both her speech and mannerisms, she’s not only a fallen woman but she is one who doesn’t see herself as such. She lives exactly the way she pleases not because of how she was taught or raised, but because it is as though she feels the world owes her something back for a debt no one knew to pay or collect.

The character model Atlee carved into Betsey is not one that I am especially keen on reading personally, as it takes a certain divergent method of telling a story. I oft find these are the kind of characters without spirit nor soul, simply living inside the moment and not even flickering to worry about the ramifications of their hours. What really appalled me is how she exited her first job at the end of Chapter 1, acting like a common ruffian thud rather than a spurned woman who would rather leave with dignity than a wage owed for time worked. I did not find myself endeared to her nor did I have any empathy for her plight. She felt cold and hardened past the point of light and I simply could not connect to her alienable personality.

I also have never honestly found a sex scene in a historical fiction novel quite like the one I found inside The Typewriter Girl — to be perfectly frank, even this scene was withered down to everything crude and vulgar. No intimacy at all. No connection of mind, body, heart, or soul. Just the perfunctory actions and a rather grotesque aftertaste. I never even say ‘sex scene’ as I read historical fiction & romance fiction, because the writers I generally read always knit in a heap of love and intimacy between their characters. The character of Betsey is too cold and too abstract to continue forward with her story. I simply could not find a way to connect to her, no matter how many chapters I read to find a measure of a mirth of why she acted and spoke the way she did. I feel more than a bit misled from my impression of the novel before I read the story to how I feel now that I’ve read a partial amount. I cannot read further, as it is simply not the kind of fiction I choose to read.

Fly in the Ointment:

Yes, dear hearts, I found the reason why another reader was upset as early-on as page 2, as even I had my brows raised attempting to sort out why this particular word was used when so many others could have been chosen to express or rather elucidate the precise action being taken. Such a distinctly vulgar word is not one I tread over lightly and it is the very reason I always put a clause in my Review Policy about why I have a preference to avoid as much vulgarity in literature as I’m able too. There are few instances where I’ll give an allowance, in this one particular moment of disclosing the word — I fully concur with the previous reader. A different way of expressing the exact same action would have sufficed. This is one moment where writers and readers are left at an impasse. (especially as Ms. Atlee is not the first to answer my question in the way in which she did) I’d prefer there was a middle ground — c’est la vie!

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Blog Book Tour Stop,
courtesy of Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours
Virtual Road Map of “The Typewriter Girl” Blog Tour found here:
I also hosted Ms. Atlee for an Author Interview

The Typewriter Girl Virtual Book Tour via HFVBTs

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see what I will be hosting next for

Bookish Events badge created by Jorie in CanvaHistorical Fiction Virtual Book Tours - HFVBT

and mark your calendars!

Reader Interactive Question:

What are your own thoughts about vulgarity in literature!? What are your individual allowances (i.e. time period / era, personality type, publication year (such as classical literature accepted; modern not as much), etc) for accepting an author’s choice to include a rampant array of strong language verse an author who uses strong language only as a sprinkle of inclusion to where if you were to blink, you’d miss it completely? Where do you draw the line yourself? And, what do you wish could change in the climate of books being written with a heavier hand of vulgarity?

{SOURCES: “The Typewriter Girl” Book Cover, synopsis, tour badge, author photograph and HFVBT badge were provided by Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours and were used by permission. Blog Tour badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Bookish Events badge created by Jorie in Canva. Typewriter clipart inserted through the ClipArt Plug-In via WP for the Open Clip Art Library (OCAL) – all clip art images are in the public domain and are free to use without restrictions. Tweets embeded by codes provided by Twitter.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

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Posted Thursday, 28 August, 2014 by jorielov in 19th Century, Blog Tour Host, Fly in the Ointment, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, the Victorian era