Title: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
Author: Annie Barrows and Mary Ann Shaffer
Publisher: Dial Press 2009
Genre: Literary Fiction
Rating: 5/5 stars
Reading Challenges: Perpetual - 21st Century Women Authors; Popsugar - Vegetable; What’s in a Name - Vegetable
“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.” 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.
I finally picked up this raved about book and absolutely loved it! The first 25 pages were a bit slow as we introduce the characters and the backstory. Once Juliet arrived on Guernsey I couldn’t stop reading. It was just too engaging! I fell for every single inhabitant on the island and even the ones not on the island. I love the epistolary structure of the book. It adds just a bit of fun and novelty into a great storyline. At times I was almost in tears learning about the characters. But at other times, I was laughing at the jokes and misadventures. This is a book that is going to be kept on my read and loved shelf for years to come. I’m certain I’ll be rereading this in the coming years.
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