Hattie Ever After by Kirby Larson

Jun 6, 2015

Hattie Ever After (Hattie, #2)Hattie Ever After by Kirby Larson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Oh hey look, I wrote a review. Take the following with a grain of salt, however: It's been a really long time since I've read the first book, Hattie Big Sky, and I couldn't remember all the details while reading this book.

I found this book at the new headquarters of the New Taipei City Public Library. I was so excited when I found it; I never knew that Hattie Big Sky had a sequel, and I literally snatched it up immediately. I've read other Kirby Larson books, of course, a notable one being The Friendship Doll (which, fun fact: I wasn't all that sure was by Larson, but hey! Memory serves.), but I'd read them a while ago. Still, I was glad to find this one, if only to 'relive my childhood'.

But this book somewhat disappointed me. I felt that this book was the carbon copy of Bachelor Girl. Sure, the characters were different (somewhat, anyway), and I can't quite recall the romance aspect of Bachelor Girl, but the similarities are definitely there. Independent woman goes to work while abandoning social norms of women not working, leaving beau behind, experiencing exciting new things to advance her career and goals and live for herself. It's a pretty inspirational book, though, and on the whole, though, Hattie Ever After is very fleshed out and real. I found some of her struggles frustrating, however. I can't quite articulate it, but it's probably because of (view spoiler)

Of course, this has everything to do with the moral universe and social standards at the time, and this is by no means Larson's fault, but I felt extremely irate at all the small sexist tidbits (references to the 'weaker sex' and all that), and therefore am especially glad that Hattie is a role model for young girls - a pioneer on the feminist front. I hope that other readers of the book will pick up on it and use it as a chance to see how far we've come, too - and reflect on the fact that some of the things Hattie does would not be considered socially acceptable today (no, I'm not talking about morally questionable things). But that, of course, is a subject for another blog(post).

tl;dr: this is a book about a working woman in the 1900s and the challenges she faces, on the professional, romantic, and friendship fronts. If you enjoyed this book, I'm sure you'd enjoy Bachelor Girl by Roger Lea McBride, but maybe not if you haven't read or had interest in the Little House series. Thanks for reading!

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