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Minnie's Room: The Peacetime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes Paperback – June 22, 2002
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Top Customer Reviews
This slim volume contains short stories, or vignettes, of ordinary people dealing with the economic and social changes of post-WWII Britain, where life was even more austere, if quieter, than during the war. (I have childhood memories of my mother sending food and clothes to our family in England.) Panter-Downes was a fine observer of human nature and she made her characters come alive with a few light "brush strokes." Her main characters are women, and I like that she has captured the domestic, private-life aspects of the time. History so often dwells on great events and people, leaving everyday life (especially of women) to our imaginations.
I hope I have not made the book sound like a depressing read; it's just that the stories chronicle how people overcame - or not - trying times. And that is something that we can emphathize with today.
Anglophiles and readers who like people-centric stories (without a great deal of plot) will love this book. I've gone on to read her other work and in fact paid rather a lot of money for an out-of-print copy of a 1970s collection of her "London War Notes." These last will interest students of WWII history...but that is another review.