About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Sunday, March 14, 2021

A Canadian Fascinator Amidst Royal Hats

Not surprisingly in The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan there are lots of scenes involving clothes especially as Bex's relationship progresses with Prince Nick and she becomes a public figure besieged by paparazzi every day.

Royal expectations take the young American into the world of hats. When I visualize the real life Queen Elizabeth II I think of her hats. All the Royal women wear hats. Hats are a new experience for Bex. In America she had worn ball caps.

She begins by "shopping after work with Bea and Joss at a private room in Stephen Jones Millinery in Covent Garden". Trying on a "spiked fascinator" she thinks she looks "like a cactus".

My wife, Sharon, loves hats. She has several dozen. I have joined her for hat shopping in Europe, the middle of the Atlantic (Bermuda), the United States and across Canada.

One of our most surprising hat experiences was at Smithbilt hats in the Inglewood area of Calgary where our sons reside. Smithbilt makes thousands of cowboy hats every year for the famed Calgary Stampede. Looking through the store we were surprised to come across a board to which were affixed fascinators. The designer of hat bands and embellishments for the cowboy hats also creates women's hats. The fascinator at the top of this post is the fascinator Sharon bought that day. I think it would be suitable for a Royal event.

I am confident every Royal lady has worn a fascinator. Here is Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall. Further examples can be seen at an amazing blog on royal hats:

For Bex her most vivid hat day is at the Royal Ascot races. Invited to watch from the Royal Family box she must have an appropriate hat which "must have a base of four inches or larger".  

While many hats at Ascot are elegant there is a tradition of "wonderful, ridiculous" hats such as "a bust of David Beckham; a Mad Hatter's tea party recreated in elaborate clay sculptures, the Cheshire Cat's tail flicking the wearer's ear".

Sadly Bex's hat is not described. Thus I turn to the hats of the real life Royals at Ascot.

I like to think Bex would have chosen a hat such as the hat worn by Princess Kate in 2017 rather than ....

..... the hat chosen by Meghan (not sure how to address her in 2021) for Ascot in 2018.

Of all the Royal Ascot hats in recent years I think the Queen made a brilliant  choice in 2018.


  1. Our friend Moira would love this post, Bill; I hope she reads it. I have to admit, I'm not a hat wearer as a rule, although as you've seen on my blog, I have a few... Hats tell so much about a culture and a society, don't they? I'm glad Sharon has had the chance to enjoy hat shopping. In a lot of places, milliners are a dying breed.

    1. Margot: Thanks for the comment. I may just send it on to Moira. I think hats add so much to an outfit. I am glad you have a few hats in your life. While not common I think more hats are being worn than decade ago.