Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

Barnes & Noble

January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she’s never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb….

As Juliet and her new correspondent exchange letters, Juliet is drawn into the world of this man and his friends—and what a wonderfully eccentric world it is. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society—born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi when its members were discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island—boasts a charming, funny, deeply human cast of characters, from pig farmers to phrenologists, literature lovers all.

Juliet begins a remarkable correspondence with the society’s members, learning about their island, their taste in books, and the impact the recent German occupation has had on their lives. Captivated by their stories, she sets sail for Guernsey, and what she finds will change her forever.

Written with warmth and humor as a series of letters, this novel is a celebration of the written word in all its guises, and of finding connection in the most surprising ways.

I am a fool. A complete and utter idiot.

I wasn't sure I wanted to read this book because it had such a silly title.

Yeah, I know. I'm kicking myself. I mean, this is possibly the MOST perfect book I have ever read.

I want to go to Guernsey. Right now. I want to play with Kit, walk with Dawsey, and wreak havoc with Isola. I want to know more about Elizabeth. And thumb my nose at Adelaide. And, of course, become BFFs with Juliet and Sydney.

The letters. Ohmygosh. I love how this novel was written: the reader learns everything through a series of letters from one character to another.

I was barely through the first few pages when I came across some new favorite quotes:

I wonder how the book got to Guernsey? Perhaps there is some sort of secret homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers.
That's what I love about reading: one tiny thing will interest you in a book, and that tiny thing will lead you to another book, and another bit there will lead you onto a third book. It's geometrically progressive - all with no end in sight, and for no other reason than sheer enjoyment.
Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad books
I am to cover the philosophical side of the debate and so far my only thought is that reading keeps you from going gaga

Total swoonage, people!

I don't know how I'm going to read or listen to another book right now.

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