Hassler has written another engaging installment in the life of Agatha McGee who at the age of eighty-eight reluctantly moves into the Sunset Senior Apartments. The New Woman recounts her attempts at building friendships, but more importantly her success at regaining her self-respect as she carves out a new life.
What else can I tell you? I can’t help but love this heroine. Even at eighty-eight she’s stretching and growing. She always yearns to do what’s right. In this particular story she follows her heart and breaks the law. Horrified, she confesses to her priest who assures her that though her action was illegal, it was not immoral. Agatha breathes a huge sigh of relief because she doesn’t mind going to jail as long as she hasn’t broken her moral code.
The blurbs on the cover of Hassler’s books compare them to Jan Karon’s Mitford books, but they are not as squeaky clean. Also, several of the subplots in this book are a little farfetched, but I could overlook them for the pleasure of spending a few hours with my friend Agatha.
I thought this was the third of the Miss McGee books, but a careful reading of the reviews at Amazon revealed another book, previous to this one (The Staggerford Flood). Happily, PBS had a copy and it’s on its way to me. If I had a complaint against The New Woman, it would be that James O’Hannon (who played a large part in the other two books) is described in only a few sentences. I would have liked to know more of what happened to him.