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Letters from Skye

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  5,391 ratings  ·  1,316 reviews
A sweeping story told in letters, spanning two continents and two world wars, Jessica Brockmole’s atmospheric debut novel captures the indelible ways that people fall in love, and celebrates the power of the written word to stir the heart.

March 1912: Twenty-four-year-old Elspeth Dunn, a published poet, has never seen the world beyond her home on Scotland’s remote Isle of
Hardcover, 290 pages
Published July 9th 2013 by Ballantine Books
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Community Reviews

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Katherine Gypson
Letters from Skye is a sweet and simple book that ultimately disappointed me because the author seemed to believe that the cliched plot twists and insubstantial characters and setting could be saved by a charming concept.

I love the idea of a novel told in letters or diaries and just last week read and reviewed a great example of this type of novel - Margaret Forster's Diary of an Ordinary Woman. But to make that kind of novel succeed you have to have a strong narrative voice, a sense of a real
Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~*
Setting: 1912 & 1940 Western Europe
4 1/2 stars for this reader

Elspeth Dunn, a young poet on Scotland's Isle of Skye,is thrilled to receive her first fan letter from an American college student David Graham. Feeling lonely in her faltering marriage, Elspeth replies and the two strike up a correspondence that turns into a friendship and eventually a deep love. But when David becomes an ambulance driver during the Great War,and Elspeth's husband goes missing in battle, their love is put to the
I loved this beautiful, gentle love story spanning WWI and WW2.It all starts when Elspeth Dunn, a 24y old published poet living on Skye receives a fan letter from an American college boy, David Graham. She is so surprised she writes back and they establish a friendship by letter gradually flowering into a romance. However, there are complications. Elspeth is recently married to her childhood friend and her husband soon enlists to fight in WWI. The story is told not only through the letters of El ...more
Dear Future Reader,
Letters from Skye came to me as an advanced reader’s copy by way of First Reads via Good Reads. I am grateful to have had this opportunity.
Davey and Sue’s love story told through letters is wonderfully voyeuristic. Not as epic as Tristan & Isolde or Romeo & Juliet, non-the-less enduring and addicting. While another reviewer found the detail in the letters held too much detail, I fully believe and imagine friends, then lovers writing to one another in the way done by J
I thought this would be a lot better than it was. It's just one step above your standard romance novel, not particularly deep or insightful. And adultery just isn't romantic to me, no matter how you package it. I read half and skimmed the rest.

Kim (in the comment thread) has a good suggestion. Forget this novel; just look at pictures of Skye instead:

See? Much better, I promise.
Jessica Brockmole’s debut novel, Letters from Skye, was a fascinating read! She easily captures the essence of bygone days as well as the beautiful craft of letter writing with her distinctive prose. Her words manipulate your emotions and beginning with the first letter this reader became a prisoner of her pen.

This impressive debut gives an unforgettable love story all told through letters. Spanning two generations, two continents as well as two World Wars, Brockmole expertly brings to life a r
Emily Crowe
The last 50 or so pages would earn the book an extra half-star, I should say.

I read this book because it was pitched to me as a good companion to The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society: epistolary novel, wartime secrets, crossing the generations, a remote island setting. On the surface, it's an apt comparison. But where Guernsey is a charming and old-fashioned story, Letters from Skye feels rushed and largely unbelievable. More to the point, the language in the letters, particularly
Many of the other readers who have reviewed this book here either received review copies or won a copy as a prize (and there's nothing wrong with that). I paid for my copy, making it one of just a handful of hardback novels I have bought over the years, but it was worth every penny.

Other reviewers have outlined the form (epistolary), the split-time historical setting around both World Wars, and the romance element. What can I add? There is a certain predictability to the basic storyline, though
Jenny (Reading Envy)
Some of the books and movies I love pull back the veil and reveal me to be a hopeless romantic, and this is going to be one of them. I sat and read this cover to cover without a break, except for when the emotions got too intense and I flipped over to check my e-mail. The entire book, set during both world wars, is written in letters. During the first world war, the letters are between a female poet living on the Isle of Skye and a slightly younger male fan of her work. The second world war lett ...more
Il voto risente del mio debole per i libri costruiti come raccolte di lettere. Una bellissima storia d'amore, di fraintendimenti, di scelte e di riflessioni.
Due piani temporali, collocati proprio in due periodi storici tra i più difficili, le due Guerre Mondiali.
Splendide citazioni, personaggi ben definiti e molto umani nelle loro paure e nei loro sbagli.
Non è facile far appassionare ad una storia solo attraverso le lettere scritte tra i vari personaggi, perchè il lettore rischia di sentirsi sol
Colleen Turner
I reviewed this book for

In March 1912, an American college student named David Graham writes a fan letter to a Scottish poet living in Skye named Elspeth Dunn. As their correspondence continues over the next five years a tender yet persistent love grows. Through their letters they confess all: that David feels like a failure and adrift in a world that he doesn’t quite fit into; that Elspeth is married yet extremely lonely on her loved yet isolated island. They push each ot
kathryn w
I gave this book 2 stars on goodreads because I thought it was ok but can't say that I liked it.
Letters from Skye: A Novel begins with a young American college student David Graham writing a fan letter to Elspeth Dunn a Scottish poet. Ms. Dunn writes back and an unlikely correspondence follows. Right from the start I couldn't picture these letters being written back in 1912. The tone of the letters was too forward and extroverted and then they also became just too overwrought. I also couldn't se
Elspeth Dunn, a poet on the windswept Isle of Skye in Scotland, received her first piece of fan mail in 1912. David Graham, a college student across the Atlantic, wrote to praise her poetry. The story of their romance through the years of World War I is told entirely through letters.

A second story line set in 1940 at the start of World War II, also told in letters, fills alternating chapters of the book. Elspeth has advised her daughter, Margaret, not to engage in a wartime romance with the pilo
The last 'epistolary novel' I read was the truly wonderful The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows, one of my favourite books of all time. So I went into Letters from Skye, another story told entirely in letters, with the bar set extremely high.

Letters from Skye is Jessica Brockmole's first novel. It contains two threads: the World War I story of Elspeth Dunn, a poet living on Skye, and Davey, the American college student who sends her a fan letter
Letters from Skye is in a format not often utilized by writers, an epistolary form. There's a good reason that this format isn't overused. It might seem that a whole novel consisting of letters would be easily produced, but to do it well and give a complete story is a work of superb creativity. There are no opportunities to fill in about events or other characters or settings. It must all be achieved in the correspondence, the back and forth between just a few major players. In this particularly ...more
I remember that, when I was a very small child, my godmother used to travel from her home in Plymouth to the Isle of Skye for her summer holidays every year. And I remember telling her that it was a very, very long way, and her telling me that it was worth it, because there was something magical about Skye.

Maybe it was that memory that drew me towards this book. I’d like to think so, because I think that there is something of that same magic that my godmother found between these pages.

This a sto
Diane S.
This was a quick book to read and it was a nice book. Switches between 1912 and 1940, but this is not mainly a historical novel per say, though it does touch on the war, the ambulance drivers and the aircraft, it is without doubt a love story. Wished the letters would have included more information about the Isle of Skye because I felt that this novel lacked depth. When I first started there were times when I was bored and wished they would hurry up and write something half-way interesting. I gu ...more
I put this book on my wishlist the minute I found out about it. It promised everything I love in a novel: two stories from two different times that come together in the end, a bit of England, historical fiction and a touch of romance. I was so happy to win a review copy from Goodreads, and I started it the minute it arrived at my house.

I had forgotten that the whole book is written as a series of letters, and when I first started I was a bit apprehensive. Would that epistolary style distract me
This one, for me, was puketastic, and gag-me unrealistic. The author is a woman, and writes men just like women. I have never met or even heard of a man who would behave like David. And thank God, because no one would be able to stomach him.

Just predictable and syrupy sweet. The saving grace is it was a very fast read. Mostly, I listened to the audio, and the narrators definitely contributed to the sickening sweetness. It was all I could do not to vomit onto the pages at times. I don't advise e
This book took me a little while to read, though not through any fault of its own. I've been in a not-reading place for the last several weeks, and I haven't read much of anything at all. This book is actually a very quick read (when I don't find myself distracted by other things), especially considering the epistolary format. The letters lend to the feeling of super speedy progress, and there's enough back and forth that it feels like a breeze to read.

I will admit that I felt that the two main
Originally posted at Novel Reveries

“In a war, emotions can be confused, people can disappear, minds can change.” (loc. 1397)


You will not believe how heart wrenching and soul uplifting one novel can be! In a time of War and love, two people can find and lose each other over and over and yet still retain that bond that will remain everlasting. You can feel the running emotions throughout each letter as they display the sender’s point of view and ongoing life triumphs and troubles throughout
C.P. Lesley
In March 1912, a college senior in Urbana, Illinois, writes a fan letter to a poet whose works he has just discovered. She writes back, initiating a correspondence that soon blossoms into friendship, then love. By that time, Europe has tumbled into what will become known as the Great War, and its repercussions reach even distant Skye, the poet’s home.

Two decades later, the echoes of these events still reverberate. A new war brings a new heroine, the poet’s daughter, face to face with the secret
Melissa Prange
While, on the whole, I thought the book was readable, there were quite a few things that bothered me about it.

1. The letters read more like e-mails: I've read other epistolary novels and their letters actually seemed like letters--they were long, involved, and detailed. The letters in this novel were easier to read, but they just seemed too short and conversational. I don't know, maybe some people actually wrote letters like this, but I mean, come on, you send one paragraph to your overseas penp
Jan 04, 2014 Alessia rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: a chi ha un debole per le storie d'amore in tempi di guerra
Shelves: letti-nel-2014
Iniziare il 2014 con un libro meraviglioso: check.
Letters From Skye è stata una lettura favolosa dall’inizio alla fine.
Ecco perché ve lo consiglio:
1. Perché è interamente scritto in forma epistolare; ADORO i libri di questo tipo, è come aprire un vecchio baule e scoprire un tesoro. E adoro la vecchia corrispondenza fatta di attese, francobolli e parole da decifrare.
2. Perché si tratta di una storia d’amore; chi non ha bisogno di una storia d’amore? Chi?
3. Perché la Prima Guerra Mondiale (e poi l
A story that unfolds entirely through letters, Letters from Skye is a simple, yet touching novel that spans both world wars – I and II. In the years leading up to World War I, Elspeth Dunn, a poet on the isle of Skye receives a letter from across the pond from American fan, David Graham. So begins a poet/fan relationship through the art of letter writing that over the months and World War I years transitions into a deeper one, one in which Elspeth and David get to know each other through the wri ...more
Absolutely loved this book!

A very well deserved 5*s! I would recommend this lovely book to readers of any genre.

Such a beautiful book!!! This is a keeper :-)

...I have enjoyed reading this book immensely and found myself eagerly looking forward to each reply letter from the characters was like I was eagerly waiting for the mailman to arrive with a response letter, such was the magnetism of each page.
A real page turner...yet I didn't want it to end, I wanted to savour each letter as
Find this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot....

I wasn't sure a story told through letters would work for me, but reading Jessica Brockmole's Letters from Skye made me realize I get a perverse sense of joy reading other people's mail. Granted we're talking fictional characters so it isn't a crime or anything, but even so. That's not wrong is it?

All joking aside, I was both pleased and disappointed with this piece. See, I'd picked it up hoping for a wartime romance, but w
“We can’t help who we love.”

I feel truly privileged to have been given the opportunity to read Jessica Brockmole’s novel Letters from Skye in advance. This novel had me in its grasp for days as I read Elspeth and David’s story and often had me up until the wee hours of the morning trying to take in just one more letter.

But I’m sad to say I finished the book last night and I’m feeling a bit of separation anxiety today. There will be no more letters when I go to bed tonight… but I’ll just have to
Nicole Long
I received this book through a First Reads give-a-way on Goodreads. This was a fantastic novel! It was completely written in the form of letters, one set during WWI (before, through, and after) and the second during the beginning of WWII. It is a love story, a mystery, and a coming of age novel for two different women, 20+ years apart. It was well written. I greatly enjoyed the history that was shared during both time periods, and found it interesting to be shared from the point of view of someo ...more
Diane Lynn
Sep 16, 2014 Diane Lynn rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Diane Lynn by: Jeannette
4.5 stars

I am enjoying dual-timeline stories right now and this one is very good. It is different as it is told completely through letters and alternates between WWI and WWII time periods. I loved the characters. Elspeth is a free spirit, David is a young impetuous college student, Margaret is a little unsure of herself and Gran, living up on Skye, knows that everyone has to live their own life. I liked seeing the life of an ambulance driver in France during WWI. If you like war-time romances, p
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I have been enamored with historical fiction since I was old enough to sit still for bedtime readings of the Laura Ingalls Wilder books. Now, I write stories of my own (and am much better at sitting still). I am the author of LETTERS FROM SKYE, a novel of love, family, and the letters holding both together.
More about Jessica Brockmole...
Nove mil dias e uma só noite Fragmentos literarios Otoño 2013 (Spanish Edition)

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