Monday, July 06, 2009

Turn the Page Tuesday - The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

It's time for Turn the Page Tuesday, hosted by Adrienne at Some of a Kind. A chance to tell you all what I've been reading and see what is on others nightstands.

My friend Yolanda from Perfectly Imperfect sent me this book when she ended up with two copies of it. I had seen reviews and heard so much about it, all good, that I couldn't wait to start reading it. Once I did, I couldn't put it down and finished it in record time. I love the format that the authors choose, getting to know the characters through their letters to each other. Set on Guernsey Island shortly after the German occupation ended, it tells the story of the strength of the island people. Juliet is a writer who, through her address written in a book that she had to sell during the war, becomes penpals with first Dawsey, who is an islander, and then the other members of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Fascinated by them and their stories, Juliet goes to the island to meet them and research their stories in hopes of writing her next book. The authors did such a fantastic job bringing their characters to life that each and every one of them became my friends too and I couldn't wait to find out what they had to say next. On one hand, it was a good light read, on the other, gave us insight into the heartbreak of the occupation. As a mother, I cannot even fathom the heartbreak of sending your children away to keep them safe, not knowing where they are for so many years. What a horrible thing to have to do. This was such a good book, one that I will be re-reading, re-visiting old friends from time to time.

From the back cover of the book:
January 1946: Writer Juliet Ashton receives a letter from a stranger, a founding member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. And so begins a remarkable tale of the island of Guernsey during the German Occupation, and of a society as extraordinary as its name.

"Traditional without seeming stale, and romantic without being naive...It's tempting to throw around terms like 'gem' when reading a book like this. But Guernsey is not precious....This is a book for firesides or long train rides. It's as charming and timeless as the novels for which its characters profess their love."
~San Francisco Chronicle Book Reviews

Mmmm....this one was so good.

I'm now just finishing up a silly vampire story, "Definitely Dead" by Charlaine Harris, set in New Orleans. Where has your reading taken you this week?


Shelby said...

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is one of my favorite books EVER!!!

I'm so gladto hear that you liked it as well.. I agree with everything you said about it. I am so in love with all those characters.. I just wanted to know them myself and be friends with them too.. oh it was just fabulous.. I was literally taken away. It was heartbreaking too to read of what happened with the children and all the other war tragedies. It gave me a different perspective on how things really were during the war in a place that I knew nothing about. Such a great book.

This week I'm reading "The Shadow of the Wind".. it's a mystery about a book..written by a Spaniard and translated into English.. one of my friends at work recommended it. I've only read a few pages, but my son (19) read it and said it was good, although he warned me there are some pretty descriptive sensual scenes. yikes.

Adrienne said...

Oh this sounds sooo up my alley! I've flagging this one as a 'to buy' book - sounds like I would want this one to be a keeper! Thanks for sharing ;-)

Faye Pekas said...

I am totally in love with the Dean Koontz character Odd Thomas and am reading about his latest adventures in Odd Hours. I love this sweet, humble man with such a great and strange sense of humor. I start smiling even before I begin reading with his books because I know he is going to say funny things to make me laugh. This is the 4th one in this series I've read and have never been disappointed. I have, so far, read Odd Thomas, Forever Odd, Brother Odd and now Odd Hours. I have to pick up a copy of In Odd We Trust still.

These are easy reading adventures about a funny guy who hangs out with dead people... including Elvis.

Wila (aka Ali) said...

Thanks for the review! The title caught my eye at the bookstore a while back, but now I'll have to go get it!!!

heather jane said...

I know I'd love this book. It sounds perfect.

Tipper said...

Sounds like a great book-I'll add it to my list : ) I just finished reading Twilight-I had to know why everyone was soooo crazy about it.

Stacey's Treasures said...

This sound very good!

Mary said...


This sounds like a book that I would enjoy. We seem to have a lot in common in the reading department. I always enjoy the books that you recommend.

Hope you're having a great week.

Carol said...

He he, I know you will love it. I still think about the characters form time to time. And it's so funny, I'm reading at night a vampire story too!!!