28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
I Never Wanted to Leave the Island,
Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is one of those rare books about which I get to say the following: it was too short. I reached the end of it and mourned that I would no longer be a part of the lives of Juliet, Dawsey, Kit, Isola, Sidney and so many others.
Juliet Ashton, a Londoner, receives a letter from a resident of Guernsey, seeking information regarding Charles Lamb. From this rather innocuous beginning comes an epistolary novel featuring romance, war, deprivation, mourning, and the healing nature of reading and friendship. Told via letters between Juliet and her editor and then the residents of the formerly-occupied Guernsey, the novel wrapped itself around me like a warm quilt, and I was loath to step back out into the cold world after finishing the last page.
Juliet is so arch and clever that my laughter rang out through the house as I read her letters. Then, sometimes only a few moments later, I'd be reaching for a tissue. Mary Ann Shaffer is a writer of great talent, and her loss is a deep one. It breaks my heart to think that we will never hear her voice again. As for the members of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, I'll carry them in my heart and memory always.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 26, 2009 1:25:17 PM PDT
Jean Sherwood says:
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! At first it was a little hard to keep the characters straight (there are 20 authors of letters). However, I loved the characters and laughed many times. The sacrifices are sobering. I would like to read more books like this!
In reply to an earlier post on Jun 1, 2009 3:13:17 AM PDT
I'm a local and my grandparents lived through this unique period in Guernsey's history. I can say with conviction that Mary Ann captured the atmosphere of the time beautifully. There are other books about the occupation (including my own) and these are listed on the website of the Guernsey Association - www.guernsey-society.org.uk/bookshop/inde
Whilst they are about the period, they don't reflect Mary Ann's approach through a collection of letters, which is a unique treament of this period. Another book you might enjoy is 'The Homecoming' which is a short book by author and playwrite Ron Bliqc who now lives in Canada. The child evacuees left their parents and families for 5 years. Ron's book is the first to explore the emotional consequences for these children after interviewing a group of them later in life.
I hope you will find some more gems to enjoy!
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