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Wednesday 25 February 2009

The Guernsey's Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer

Review:- This novel is like no other that I've read, it's a compilation of letters to and from the characters. I didn't realize that this would actually be an effective method of telling a story but for this book it worked a treat. 

This is certainly not a book that I would have picked up on my accord, which cements my decision in joining several book clubs, it has introduced me to books that I would normally not read. This is the scheduled book for both Book-a-month and Bookies Too, both Yahoo groups.

This book is set in the post-war era. A London-based writer Juliet Ashton receives a letter from a Dawsey Adams from Guernsey. He had come across a book by Charles Lamb originally owned by Juliet, she had written her details on the book. By contacting Juliet, Dawsey had hoped she could give him contact details of local London book stores that may stock more Charles Lamb books. During the correspondence he mentions the Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society which, with a name like that obviously piqued Juliet's curiosity. Hence, this was the beginning of the stories to come.

Juliet stating her interest on this strangely named group started receiving letters from other members with their own tales of their lives and experiences during the war when the Germans had invaded Guernsey. The correspondence became intense and Juliet was soon invited and happily accepted a visit to Guernsey where both herself and her new friends all learn something about themselves, their lives and each other.

To be honest I'm not quite sure how to put my thoughts about this book onto a post. I don't even know at this stage whether I actually liked the book or not! However, I had read the book in less than 24 hours so it definitely sustained my interest but it wasn't your usual "I can't sleep till it's read" page-turner. 

The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society is definitely very interesting and enjoyable. It's an easy read which is something that I appreciate considering it's heavy topic of war. I find that most war books are quite monotonous, being a very sad and depressing topic it's quite hard to find the right balance, but Mary Ann Shaffer did a wonderful job. Having said that, this book is still quite in depth regarding themes hence I will await till I have read and participated in the book club discussions before I write the conclusion of this review. Please bear with me till then.



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