Saturday, February 11, 2012

potato peel...

My latest read, I read so fast I feel like the events 'happened' in one day of my life.  I feel like I went there for a day trip, and it all happened.  Yeah, so the book was pretty good.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

4.5 / 5

The scoring biz is a bit tricky - I think I score too high for some books which pushes the other books' scores up so that they score better but I don't want them to be a 5 so I have to start adding halves and quarters.  Ya get me?  Might have to think of a new system.

'The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.'  What a mouthful.  And probably a mouthful that would have interested me, but not necessarily had me chomping at the proverbial bit to read the book.  I simply didn't understand what it meant, or what the book could possibly be about.

Now that I've read the book, the title warms my heart.  To be fair, I wish I'd slowed down and taken in the book a little more - read and re-read pages.  I should mention here something that is perhaps the crux of this book, (and probably why it was so easy to read fast) and what really makes the book great - in my opinion : the book is written entirely in letters.

I love the feeling of that - old fashioned snail mail, making its way across the ocean to reach the person the letter was lovingly crafted for.  There are many characters in our story, which is why I wish I'd slowed down and  savoured each letter.  I didn't realise early on that some individuals would become mainstays of the show, and I had missed small inklings of their personality and life.

The story centres around a famous wartime writer in England - Juliet Ashton, who (writing under a 'nom de plume' - Izzy Bickerstaff) manages to lightheartedly yet respectfully produce something worth reading in wartime (a difficult task, as you can imagine).  She becomes aware of the German occupation of the island of Guernsey, and gets in touch with the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.  They begin to exchange letters and through their many different voices and experience we learn about life on Guernsey under the occupation.  I wanted to live there, with them.  The characters are completely loveable and unique, and the way the book is written through letters brings an endearing and intimate quality.  I find myself recommending it to people, even patients I'm caring for (I'm a nurse), as a lovely story.

You must read it.  Prepare to be swept away by the thought of book clubs on islands, and potato peel pie.  Well, maybe not potato peel pie.

Joining up with Remaliah over at Lily & Georgie (be sure to check her and her adorable twins out!)

For Mrs. Readalot's BookClub (click button below for more info, and to have a look-see at the fabulous Simone's blog).


  1. This is a great review! Thank you so much for adding it in :) I know what you mean about the fast reading. I'm a notorious speed-reader...and I end up making the story pass so quickly and miss details...even if I think I'm managing to get them all in :) I reread this for the review and made myself slow down, and really enjoyed it all over again. I completely agree with you about the letter-writing. I loved how it made the characters so natural and personable...with all the humour (well, most of them!).
    P.S. I love your photography...I just had a little look. What camera do you have? Do you, by chance have the 50mm 1.8 lens? I have it on my wishlist and hope hope hope one day I'll have it :) Enjoy the rest of your weekend across the channel!

  2. Great review Stacey....I now want to read a book that I would not have given tuppence for (an old-time guernsey saying!) Well done!


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