Monday, December 1, 2008

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

One of the most delightful books I have read in a long time is The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer.

Set both in England and Guernsey Island at the beginning of 1946, this novel is totally comprised of notes, letters and telegrams. Author Juliet Ashton (nom de plume Izzy Bickerstaff) is tired of covering what she calls the sunny side of the war and its aftermath. By a strange fluke involving a used book with her name in it, she begins communicating with many of the residents of Guernsey, starting with farmer Dawsey Adams and moving on to his neighbors. Her pen pals share their lives with Juliet, particularly about their book group, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, and how it was formed.

The inhabitants are charming, Juliet even more so, and their correspondence ultimately gives her inspiration for her new work and changes her life! Booklovers in particularly will cherish this book but so will anyone with a sense of humor and enjoyment of the quirks of their fellowman. And the ending is great!

As an aside, for those who listen to audiobooks, this is done as Readers Theater with a number of voices and is really excellent!

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