Sunday, August 15, 2010

Very Belated, but Enthusiastic Praise for the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

It only recently occurred to me that I neglected to write a proper review of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Schaffer and Annie Barrows. This is unacceptable because I read it almost a year ago and it was one of the most perfect books I have ever read.

Back when I first read it, I shared a few of my favorite passages, but didn't write more because my best friend hadn't finished it yet and we were going to discuss it later. Then I forgot to get back to it, which is unforgivable. So here I am do remedy the situation.

Guernsey is an epistolary novel set in Great Britain just after WWII. It is the charming story of how Juliet (a London columnist and author) and the members of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (don't worry--you learn what that name is all about) come to know each other through correspondence. It begins when one member reads a book that once belonged to Juliet and still bore her name and address in its inside cover. Soon other members write to her too and she eventually visits them on the island. The story is rich with hilarious and heart-breaking characters, and is utterly heartwarming. I loved the people and the stories that unfold around them, but Guernsey is also beautiful testament to the beauty and power of reading and books.

The book was written by two women, an aunt and her niece. Sadly, Aunt Mary Ann died several months before the book was published.

For a bit more of a taste of Guernsey and its residents and letter-writers, watch these two clips. The first features the niece, Annie Barrows talking about the characters and the birth of the literary society. The second, dramatized readings of some of the letters. Let me know what you think of these trailers, whether you've read the book or not. I'm curious about this trend of book trailers, and plan to write about them in the future.

P.S. Stay tuned! My first giveaway is coming up this week!


1 comment:

Carolyn said...

I also adored this book! It was unexpected too b/c I'm not normally into these kinds of books.