Additions to “A Hathaway Review”

After rereading some passages (guess which ones!) and giving the series a little bit more thought, I came up with a few additions to my original review.

The good first… I discovered that there are things I really find adorable about Cam and Amelia. For one thing, I love it when Cam calls Amelia “hummingbird.” That is very fitting because Amelia is always busy with something, running from one place to another solving problems, being therefore people and looking after her siblings… just like a humming bird. Every once in a while this all becomes too much for her so she has this habit of tapping her foot whenever she gets nervous. And I love it when Cam touches her leg with his to stop her. The role Cam assumes as the head of the family to take some of the burden off Amelia’s shoulders is also very touching and all the more fitting because he is also renowned for “managing” things because he’s the manager of a tavern.

And now the bad… Or rather morally problematic, disturbing sections. In the beginning of Tempt me at Twilight, shortly after Harry sets his sights on Poppy, he tells his assistant Valentine to deliver a piece of jewelry to his mistress, Mrs. Rawlings. And as an explanation, he simply says, “I’m getting rid of her.”

In my opinion, “getting rid of” is a very strong word to be used for a woman, whether she’s his mistress, a random prostitute or a lady, by a gentleman as respectful as Harry Ruthledge. I wonder if other readers found this bit disturbing because, I’m afraid, there is an underlying message that points to the rivalry between women according to the norms set by the male-driven society. The society treats with contempt women who earn a living through the use of their bodies. Still. Though one cannot make a generalization, if we consider that most of these women were driven to opt for such employment due to dire conditions, it is unfair to disrespect them so openly. I can’t especially bring myself to do so as a woman. So that’s why, such open disregard for a mistress in a book read generally by women and written by a female author of romance caused a little pang in the moral shelf of the “idealistic” department of my brain, which is linked with my heart with a strong artery. Women should be united against men if they should be united against anything. We shouldn’t turn in on each other on such matters. It’s a trap set by the male-driven society. Rather, we should have sympathy for one another and be in solidarity. I’m not gonna start quoting de Beauvoir right now because that’s not the issue I want to devote this whole post to. I’m just saying. Of course, there’s the possibility that I’m reading too much into this. It’s not Lisa Kleypas speaking after all, it’s Harry Ruthledge. In that case, badly done Harry! Badly done!

In Married by Morning when Cat and Leo finally get to it, Cat tries to remember the tactics she learned from her aunt (who is a prostitute!) to please Leo. This just didn’t do for me. Sex in historical romances is all about passion and spontaneity, not making calculations or assessing ways to pleasure your partner (at least not in your first time!) And later on the bit about finding appropriate names for the female genitalia just ruined the mood of the whole scene. Besides, Leo’s account for the French word is wrong. In French, the equivalent of pussy is “la chatte,” meaning a female cat.

That’s all for now… If I come up with anything else, I think I’ll just update this post rather than start a new one. I just started reading the Wallflower series by Lisa Kleypas and I am loving it. Let’s see if it will give more insight to some of the characters in the Hathaway series. I know Cam is in it for one thing!

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