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The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

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January 1946: Author Juliet Ashton can't think what to write next. Out of the blue, she receives a letter from Dawsey Adams of Guernsey - by chance, he's acquired a book that once belonged to her - and, spurred on by their mutual love of reading, they begin a correspondence. When Dawsey reveals that he is a member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, her curiosity is piqued and it's not long before she begins to hear from other members. As letters fly back and forth with stories of life in Guernsey under the German Occupation, Juliet soon realizes that the society is every bit as extraordinary as its name.

302 pages, Paperback

First published July 29, 2008

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About the author

Mary Ann Shaffer

6 books1,850 followers
Mary Ann Shaffer worked as an editor, a librarian, and in bookshops. Her life-long dream was to someday write her own book and publish it. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society was her first novel. Unfortunately, she became very ill with cancer and so she asked her niece, Annie Barrows, the author of the children’s series Ivy and Bean, as well as The Magic Half, to help her finish the book. Mary Ann Shaffer died in February 2008, a few months before her first novel was published.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 59,708 reviews
Profile Image for Megha.
79 reviews1,047 followers
April 9, 2009

Dear Mary Ann Shaffer,

I recently read your book 'The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society'. It brought a few questions to my mind.
Juliet writes in one of her letters:
"Dear Sidney,
What an inspired present you sent kit - red satin tap shoes covered with sequins"

Didn't Sidney know what present he had sent?
If you had to resort to sentences like these to speak what you wanted to, didn't you realize that the letter format and your writing didn't go well together?

Learning from your bad example, I will quit trying to be fancy, stop this letter here and write a regular review.

A Reader.

** Spoiler Alert **

Novel written in epistolary format. Set in post WWII England.1946.
Juliet is a 30-something writer living in London. (She is like this perfect human being who is universally loved. The only people who dislike even the smallest thing about her are the evil people). One day she receives a letter from a man living on Guernsey islands who found her address on a second hand book he had. Soon Juliet is exchanging letters with the members of Guernsey literary society and people talk about what books they like and why. Then suddenly everyone forgets about the books and Guernsey people start sharing their most intimate experiences from the time during the world war with Juliet, who is only a stranger. A few weeks later Juliet goes to the Guernsey islands to meet and interview these people. Of course everyone there just loves her (except the evil woman). She stays there for a few months and decides to adopt a four year old orphan girl she met there. The girl of course loves Juliet more than the people who have raised her. And then Juliet marries a pig farmer and settles down on the Guernsey islands.
So much for the ridiculous plot. (I should have just known better, just look at the cheesy title.)

It shouldn't be difficult for a decent writer to develop good characters when using a letter format, since each character gets his/her own voice. However, all the characters in this book seem to talk in exactly the same manner. Be it an accomplished writer from the city of London or farmers from a remote island, their letters sound just the same. Irrespective of whether the letters are being written to a close friend or to a complete stranger. Almost all of the characters have only a single trait. For some of the characters I can't recall even a single distinct characteristic.

Mary Ann tries to have everything in one book. She has grazed the surface of numerous topics like books, world war, art, nature love, bucolic life, friendship, love, homosexuality, religion and so on. None of these get more than a superficial treatment. Stories about Nazi occupation of Guernsey don't tell you anything real about the war. They just revolve around this saint of a woman who died during the war while trying to show-off her heroism. To add to this drama, halfway through the book Mary Ann shifted the focus to Juliet trying to decide between different love interests (too many people love her, you know). Why is this book being marketed a historical novel?

Another one of those recent successful books that everyone is raving about. I don't get it.
Profile Image for Linda Sexauer.
52 reviews156 followers
July 29, 2008
Several years ago, I worked at an art gallery here in Anchorage. Though I loved the art, I wasn’t much good at selling it. More often than not, I just chatted up the customers, who were from all over the world.

One night, four elderly people wandered in. They told me they were from a tiny island off the coast of southern England called “Guernsey”. I’d never heard of it, so they proudly explained it was the only part of British soil that had been occupied by the Nazis during World War II. The island was occupied for a long five years; an experience to which they had all been witnesses. At that moment, Guernsey was marked in my mind.

Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrow’s new book, “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” is an opportunity to travel back in time to 1946 Guernsey.

Beginning early 1946 in London, Juliet Ashton, a British writer, and former war journalist, is emerging from the ashes of the war to rebuild her life and her identity. She has lost her home and all her possessions, most regrettably her book collection. Out of the blue, she responds to correspondence started by a resident of Guernsey, who has managed to obtain a second-hand book once owned by Juliet, in which she had long ago written her name and address. Through this initial contact, Juliet meets an entire community, and the course of her life is redirected.

Easily reminiscent of Helene Hanff’s epistolary classic, “84 Charing Cross Road”, the novel is written in the epistolary style. Shaffer and Barrow skillfully use this medium to successfully establish their characters and a solid storyline.

Charming, funny, sweet, and thoughtful, “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” is a story that women might find more appealing than men. Yet, it is unflinching in its wartime recollections. The deprivations and devastation of the time are imaginatively and convincingly conveyed.

At its core, this is a book about the love of reading, and the magic of books.

I highly, highly recommend “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society”.
Profile Image for Zoë.
328 reviews66.4k followers
October 3, 2018
Although the abrupt ending frustrated me, the rest of the book was so soothing. This is probably due to the fact it was written in letters to loved ones and not the subject matter itself, as it focuses heavily on the atrocities of WWII. Also, it's a book about books! Nothing makes me happier than reading a book about why reading is wonderful.
I read this because I watched and loved the Netflix adaptation (yes, I'm that monster who sometimes watches adaptations before reading the source material). I think I may have liked the movie slightly more, not that this was bad or anything. So if you liked the book, I recommend the movie and vice versa!
Profile Image for Will Byrnes.
1,284 reviews119k followers
September 8, 2022
description
Annie Barrows and Mary Ann Schaffer - image from from chrestomanci.over-blog.com - Schaffer wrote most of the book, but was terminally ill so called in her niece, Barrows, to help her complete it.

The GL&PPPS tells of Nazi occupation of this Channel Island during WW II. The story is told via a series of letters exchanged between residents of the island and a writer attempting to learn about their experiences. We are offered a wide range of characters, some warm and charming, some extremist buffoons, some heroic, some not so heroic. The core of the story is Elizabeth, a particularly brave and wonderful individual. She is the emotional heart of the tale, as the many characters all have some experience that relates to her. Another important aspect is how all the characters relate around literature.

description
From the film - image from Amazon

Shaffer offers us a charming and wide-ranging palette of humanity trying their best to cope under very trying circumstances. As someone who knew very little about the occupation of the Channel Islands, I found it educational as well as a fun read. It reminds one of Alexander McCall Smith, not, clearly, for the specifics of the location, but for the warmth of the authorial tone. The writers clearly care about their characters and this place the way that Smith hovers lovingly over his imagined Botswana. Sit back and enjoy. This is a delightful, informative, and satisfying read that celebrates the impact of reading on people’s lives.

description
From the film - image from Amazon

The film is available on Netflix.
Profile Image for Melissa.
647 reviews28.6k followers
October 11, 2018
*3.5 stars*
“Perhaps there is some secret sort of homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers. How delightful if that were true.”

Believe it or not—as shallow as this may sound—the stunning movie tie-in cover was the catalyst, goading me to take a hard look and commit to a book that’s done little more than float along my periphery for years.

What do you get when you combine a roast pig dinner, an unavoidable lie and the most unappetizing pie? A mouthful: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

Born from the quick thinking of a woman caught out after curfew and continued initially to thwart suspicion from the German occupation, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society took on a life of its own, becoming a salvation to the people of the small channel island during WWII. Providing hope, friendship and for some, a new-found love for books.

An epistolary novel (one told entirely through letters and telegrams), The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society picks up post-war, in 1946, relaying bits and pieces from the lives of what can only be described as a witty cast. There’s 30-something Juliet, a writer in London, fresh off a book tour and searching for that spark of an idea; something to obliterate her writer’s block. The bulk of the story is carried by Juliet, sharing her humor and reverie with childhood friends and the people she comes to care for in Guernsey.

One of Juliet’s previously owned books, marked with her address, lands a letter from Dawsey Adams in her mailbox. In a twist of fate, that very book found its way from London to Guernsey, becoming a treasured tome to the new owner. Juliet and Dawsey’s exchanged thoughts spur a letter writing campaign of sorts. With their words and stories of survival, the people of Guernsey lure Juliet to their picturesque island.

This is not what I would consider a literary tour-de-force by any means; especially where WWII fiction is concerned. It’s often predictable and even a bit silly, in some respects, but it’s a change of pace in a space that’s naturally filled with heavy reads. Like Juliet, I found myself smitten with the people of Guernsey—one of my favorite letters penned by a reluctant society attendee, turned full-fledged poetry reader, all to impress the woman who eventually becomes his wife.

The back half of the story is much less compelling than the first. With Juliet on the island, the variety of voices from Guernsey are lost, and for some reason, so is her enchanting nature. For me, the story went from colorful to drab, finishing with an untimely and honestly, unfounded question. To be fair, this is one of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to loves stories, so take my thoughts for what they are—the ramblings of a self-proclaimed picky reader.

With that said, there is something all too charming about a book that pays homage to the written word—highlighting the fact that even in some of the bleakest moments, books wield the power to bring people together.
Profile Image for Emma  Kaufmann.
94 reviews43 followers
September 8, 2008
Once again I find myself reading ten pages of a book which is meant to be 'great' and wondering why it is just rubbish. I was meant to read this for a book club but it was about as palatable as a potato peel pie so I spat it out uneaten.

Now, I'm sure there are American authors who can write in an authentic British voice (no one springs to mind, and Elizabeth George is terrible at it but at least her plot is not clunky) but Mary Ann Shaffer isn't one of them.

This book has an epistolary plot that just goes clunk clunk clunk.

Firstly, it is set in London in 1946 where we meet a fairly posh author who, rather than using the polite and rather stilted language that people used in 1946 sounds like Sex in the City circa 2008.

I mean, come on, Mary Ann, have you ever even read a letter from 1946?

So, you have letters flying around in 1946 which sound like they were written sixty years later. How are you meant to get into this?

Then of course, a man in Guernsey writes to this author woman, says he has found a book with her name and address written on the flyleaf, there are currently no books in Guernsey, can she procure him some from London? Of course the lady author sends this poor man in Guernsey some books and writes him long letters. As if.

Note to Americans: posh English authors in 1946 would not have been quite this effusive to a person who wasn't even a fan of her books.

Obviously this clunky device is meant to start a stupid story going about this guy in Guernsey telling her all about his experiences when the Nazi's invaded Guernsey. Save me. All about as authentic as a Hallmark movie about the Nazis.

This book reminded me of the children's American Girl series which take periods in history, and have a girl heroine who gives a personal and hightly sanitized view of American history, but does a fairly good job seeing as the audience for these books is 6 to 10 year olds. But this book is meant to be for adults. Save me. This is WWII lite.

Take this quote:

"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.”

Or maybe someone bought it in a bookshop and took it to Guernsey?

This sums up the tone of this tome. Twee beyond endurance.
Profile Image for Alisa.
Author 15 books28 followers
December 4, 2013
I'm in favor of:

-pig farmers as romantic leads
-parrots named Zenobia who eat cuckoo clocks
-women who do the asking

I'm not in favor of:

-strong silent types as romantic leads
-adorable children
-parrots getting more page time than goats
Profile Image for MarilynW.
1,036 reviews2,572 followers
January 31, 2022
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
by Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows, John Lee (Narrator), Juliet Mills (Narrator), Paul Boehmer (Narrator), Susan Duerden (Narrator), Rosalyn Landor (Narrator)

Two years ago, I watched the film, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, and my memories of the film made me want to experience the audio version of the book. I enjoyed the film but feel like it was much more "fluffy" than the book, leaning more on the romantic side of the story than on the more detailed suffering that the book entails. I probably need to get my head out of WWII and the Holocaust for a while because I'm still reeling by the atrocities inflicted on the island of Guernsey, during the war. Of course, everyone suffered because of the war and in the case of the islanders, their resources were limited by the Germans taking over their island.

As this story goes, told in the form of letters in 1946, thirty two year old Juliet Ashton, the writer of the popular Izzy Bickerstaff series and book, is determined to write something different, under her own name, rather than the pseudonym that she has been using. By chance, she gets a letter from a Dawsey Adams, who had seen her name written in the front of a used book that he bought. Dawsey and Juliet start a regular correspondence. Dawsey lives on the island of Guernsey and he tells her of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, of which he is a member. Soon Juliet is writing to other members of this book club and she knows she has found the subject of her next book.

Eventually Juliet goes to stay in Guernsey and we learn of all the horrors these brave people endured during the war. Only the resourcefulness of the people allowed them to make it through the war with their humanity and dignity intact. So many stories of the brutality of the enemy but sometimes the compassion of the enemy, too. Juliet falls in love with these people and this place. Among those she comes to care for is little Kit, a four year old girl that the townsfolk have adopted as their own, after her mother was taken away for helping a sick slave. At the same time that Juliet realizes she never wants to be away from Kit, she is fending off a marriage proposal from a wealthy American publisher who won't take on for an answer. This is a beautiful story, full of silent heroes and heroines, doing what they could against impossible odds, to help each other and those who needed even more than they needed to get through the war. And it's the story of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, invented in the spur of the moment but now a real book club with the most unusual of readers and reviewers. This story is both sad, funny and endearing, with the funny and endearing winning out in the end. 

Pub July 29, 2008
Profile Image for Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽.
1,878 reviews22.6k followers
April 29, 2021
I loved this book - it's on my favorites shelf. So obviously I recommend it!

In my March 2018 buddy read with Trish (which kind of disintegrated because she raced ahead and finished the whole book in like one day :p) I was impressed with how well the authors melded actual historical facts about the island of Guernsey during WWII, and people's wartime experiences, with the novel's storyline. I could see the seams a little - interesting true stories and anecdotes tend to show up in the book as random people's letters to the main character, Juliet - but I have to say overall I still enjoyed this book thoroughly. While it deals with some harrowing experiences, it does so with a fairly light hand, which some readers may roll their eyes at, but others will appreciate. It tends toward the "cozy" type of read, which isn't a bad thing in my book. There's a rich cast of characters, just a touch of romance, and some truly delightful humor. I'll definitely reread this a third time someday.

This historical fiction novel is set shortly after WWII, with frequent wartime stories being related in letters between the characters. Through these letters (this is an epistolary novel), we follow Juliet Ashton, a fairly successful author of a British humor column, who is searching for a new topic to write about, and trying to decide what to do with her life and her boyfriend. She gets a letter out of the blue from a man on Guernsey Island, Dawsey Adams, who saw her name in a book and asks her for the name of a London bookshop, and tells her a little about his local book group, the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

One letter leads to another, both from Dawsey and others on Guernsey, and gradually Juliet finds out more about her new friends on the island, what they experienced during the German WWII occupation of the island of Guernsey a few years before, and how their book club was formed and got its name. When she decides to go visit Guernsey and her pen pal friends there - upsetting her current boyfriend in the process - her life gradually becomes intertwined with theirs.

This book includes some fun and often quirky characters, quite a bit of interesting (and sometimes harrowing) WWII history, a love for literature, frequent humor, and just a little bit of romance.
Profile Image for Beth F.
352 reviews321 followers
November 26, 2008
Gush, gush, gush, gush, gush, gush, gush!!! GUSH!!!!! So yes, clearly I loved this book.

I think the only person I wouldn’t recommend this book to is one of those people who only read meaty tomes that might give regular people a brain embolism while they’re trying to make sense of the 17 different layers of subconscious meaning. I’d also hesitate from recommending this book to most men. However, if you have the ability to find joy and delight in the simple pleasures of a feel-good book, you too might fall in love with this story.

The book is written entirely in an epistolary format, consisting of letters back and forth between Juliet Ashton, a young author in 1946 London and several of her contacts and friends. It is just after WWII and people are trying to reclaim their lives and figure out if and how to move on from the tragedy of the war.

Juliet receives an unsolicited letter from a man who lives on the island of Guernsey, one of the small islands situated in the English Channel between France and England (known for having loose regulations and financial secrecy in the modern world thereby making it attractive to fraudsters, money launderers and criminals, but that has nothing to do with this story and why it is enjoyable, I just couldn’t help myself from mentioning it). But anyway, Dawsey Adams of Guernsey acquires a used book that had originally been owned by Juliet. She had penned her name and address inside the cover and Dawsey decided to write her a letter to share how much he’d enjoyed her secondhand book and how reading books had helped several Guernsey residents cope during the time of the German Occupation of their island. Before long, Juliet is corresponding regularly with Mr. Adams and several other Guernsey residents, all who had been a part of the Literary Society. She learns that the Society was initially formed as a front to explain a broken curfew but eventually became a rewarding opportunity to meet with friends and discuss a love of books. Eventually, Juliet travels to Guernsey to meet her island pen friends and it was hard for me to put the book down and get any work done!

The letters back and forth between Juliet and her friends gave the book a personal touch and it felt like we were being given an inside look into these peoples’ lives. I subscribe to the belief that letter-writing is a lost art form and appreciate books that are heavy on the letters and found the format enjoyable and easy to approach. There is also a very sweet love story in between these pages that made me sigh with contentment when the book ended. It was a highly satisfying read and I think that most book lovers would also enjoy this story.

Even though most of us don’t write letters anymore, I think we will identify and be attracted to the notion of maintaining a long-distance correspondence with someone and developing a friendship with someone we’ve never even met (hello? Anybody chat/email with friendly strangers on the internet?) Juliet becomes quite close to her Guernsey friends and there was one passage in particular when she is finally embarking on her trip to meet her pen friends that rung true for me because it was eerily similar to the thoughts I’ve had on the occasion when I’ve met “net friends” who crossed that boundary to become “real life friends” and it’s that, “oh god, oh god, oh god, what if we don’t like each other? What if my words misled them? What if I’m not as interesting in person as they thought I was online?”

”As the mail boat lurched into the harbor, I saw St. Peter Port rising up from the sea on terraces, with a church on the top like a cake decoration, and I realized that my heart was galloping. As much as I tried to persuade myself it was the thrill of the scenery, I knew better. All those people I’ve come to know and even love a little, waiting to see—me. And I, without any paper to hide behind…in these past two or three years, I have become better at writing than living…On the page, I’m perfectly charming, but that’s just a trick I learned. It has nothing to do with me. T least, that’s what I was thinking as the mail boat came toward the pier. I had a cowardly impulse to throw my red cape overboard and pretend I was someone else.”

As if I hadn’t already fallen in love with Juliet and her friends by this point, reading that passage actually brought tears to my eyes (not even kidding) because I knew exactly what she was feeling at that precise moment because I’ve been there before. So yes, I loved this book. It was beautiful and charming and a sheer delight to read.

However, I think potato peel pie sounds disgusting and I wouldn’t want to eat it.
Profile Image for emma.
1,785 reviews43k followers
January 20, 2023
I don't know why I started reading this, and I don't know why I continued reading this, and I don't know why I finished reading this.

For starters, I don't know why I picked it up, because although I have heard of it approximately 47382947 times, it has never once sounded interesting to me. Not even the movie version with Lily James. (And I mean, have you seen Lily James? If she can't lock my interest down, nothing can.)

Secondly, when I inexplicably picked it up, reading it did not make it any more interesting. In fact, it was somehow even less so. I should have DNFed at 2% and dedicated the rest of my life to forgetting.

And finally, there is truly no earthly reason that I finished this. It never got more interesting. In fact, it got less so. As is proven by the fact that no passage of writing has ever included the word "interesting" in the context of "not being that" than this review.

As I said upon finishing:
I'm not going to make many friends by saying this, but I was so bored by my entire experience reading this that I considered throwing it at a wall.

(Metaphorically, of course. Even the most boring books don't deserve physical harm.)
Profile Image for jessica.
2,479 reviews29.7k followers
June 1, 2020
definitely in the minority with my feelings on this one and i think its because im realising epistolary stories just arent for me.

its a little ironic because, in one letter, juliets publisher says ‘ive read your chapters and they wont do. strings of anecdotes dont make a book.’ and thats all this book is! its full of letters with anecdotes.

i do like that i learned about the island of guernsey, i appreciate the different perspective of WWII, and i LOVE the adoration for books (so many good quotes!), but i cant get over the fact that letters only tell, they dont show, which is what i personally need from storytelling.

i wish i could have gotten more out of this but i guess im not a letter person.

3 stars
Profile Image for Cayenne.
669 reviews20 followers
July 27, 2011
This was one of the lovliest books I have ever read. I have read many books and seen many movies about World War II, but this one was the best. It was so real. I felt like I knew the characters and I wanted to run over to Guernsey to meet them in person. The stories about their experiences were so touching, not just because they were hard, but because the people were so brave. Horrible things happened to them, but I didn't feel traumatized reading about them. I felt uplifted at their endurance and hope, and love for each other. This book definitely joins the few books on my favorites shelf. (I seem to have a weakness for books written as letters.)

7/26/11 re-read and it was still lovely
Profile Image for Dr. Appu Sasidharan .
944 reviews1,894 followers
September 7, 2022
I have read only very few books written in epistolary format.

The authors' way of writing this novel in a letter format is not usually seen in contemporary literature.

Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows try to tell us the tale of the island of Guernsey during the German occupation and an extraordinary society through the characters of Juliet Ashton and Dawsey Adams. A letter from Dawsey to Juliet after the second world war brings us straight into the story. The authors beautifully delineate the relationship between Juliet and various other members of society, the effects of the war, their love of books, and many other topics in this novel.

What I learned from this book
1) Reading
Reading and books form an integral part of this novel. We can see the love for reading and the benefits of reading described in a beautiful way in this book.
"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."


2) The role of books in marital life.
How should a voracious reader select their life partner? We can see marriage being called off just because of the partner's dislike for books in this novel.
"On the afternoon before our wedding, Rob was moving in the last of his clothes and belongings while I delivered my Izzy article to the Spectator. When I was through, I tore home, flew up the stairs, and threw open the door to find Rob sitting on a low stool in front of my bookcase, surrounded by cartons. He was sealing the last one up with gummed tape and string. There were eight boxes—eight boxes of my books bound up and ready for the basement!

He looked up and said, "Hello, darling. Don't mind the mess, the porter said he'd help me carry these down to the basement."

He nodded toward my bookshelves and said, "Don't they look wonderful?"

Well, there were no words! I was too appalled to speak. Sidney, every single shelf—where my books had stood—was filled with athletic trophies. There were awards for every game that could possibly be played with a wooden object. There were statues for everything a man could jump over.

All I could do was scream, "How dare you! What have you DONE?! Put my books back!"
Well, that's how matters started. Eventually, I said something to the effect that I could never marry a man whose idea of bliss was to strike out at little balls and little birds. Rob countered with remarks about damned bluestockings and shrews. And it all degenerated from there”


3) Marrying the partner of our dreams
Most of us dream about marrying the partner of our dreams. The authors tell us the secret about marriage in this book. Everybody dreams about the qualities that we need in our partner without thinking about whether we have the same qualities. It is better not to dream about qualities to be present in the partner if you don't have the same quality.

The authors tell us that engagement or marriage of the partner of our dreams is just the beginning, unlike as portrayed in many popular books and movies, and tells us how to view our life from a more realistic perspective.
"All my life I thought that the story was over when the hero and heroine were safely engaged—after all, what's good enough for Jane Austen ought to be good enough for anyone. But it's a lie. The story is about to begin, and every day will be a new piece of the plot."



My favourite three lines from this book
"I love seeing the bookshops and meeting the booksellers—booksellers really are a special breed. No one in their right mind would take up clerking in a bookstore for the salary, and no one in his right mind would want to own one—the margin of profit is too small. So, it has to be a love of readers and reading that makes them do it—along with first dibs on the new books."


“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad books.”


"It was amazing to me then, and still is, that so many people who wander into bookshops don't really know what they're after—they only want to look around and hope to see a book that will strike their fancy. And then, being bright enough not to trust the publisher's blurb, they will ask the book clerk the three questions: (1) What is it about? (2) Have you read it? (3) Was it any good?"


What could have been better?
There is a probability that some readers might find this book unrealistic and offensive in some places.

Rating
4/5 This book will be a good choice if you love to read books related to the world war.
Profile Image for Tatiana.
1,379 reviews11.7k followers
August 13, 2018
Update 8/13/2018

Just saw the movie adaptation. Very faithful to the book, if not in plot (can't remember details 7 years later), certainly in tone. Saccharine and especially annoying in its watered down portrayal of Nazi occupation. Suffering-lite.

The words that immediately come to mind when I think of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society are nice, cute and, unfortunately, hokey(ish).

I certainly understand its popularity (#4 most popular book of 2007 on Goodreads!). There is a distinct air of wholesomeness, inoffensiveness about it, plus it is occasionally funny (in a cute, inoffensive way), with a bit of tragic war business thrown in.

But it got tiring for me very quickly. From the moment the main character, Juliet, a young writer, came to Guersney to visit her pen pals, the whole story just got way too cute for my taste. Everyone on the island was so nice, so into doing the right thing, so in love with Juliet, I just couldn't stand it. They were not real people. Even the dark parts of the novel - about the war, occupation, and concentration camps - were sort of glossed over.

The story simply needed more complex characters, more drama, edgier experiences. As is, it is your standard feel-good commercial fiction with no depth.
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,568 reviews55.6k followers
November 26, 2021
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is a historical novel by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows that was published in 2008.

A novel about the trials of the people living in the Channel Islands, in particular, Guernsey, during the German occupation of World War 2.

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.

‏‫‬‭‭The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows. 278 Pages.
افست، تهران: جنگل‏‫، 1398هجری خورشید ‬‬‏‫= سال2019م

تاریخ نخستین خوانش به زبان انگلیسی: روز بیست و هشتم ماه می سال2019میلادی

عنوان: انجمن ادبی و کیک پوست سیب‌زمینی گرنزی؛ نویسنده: مری آن شفر، آنی باروس؛ مترجم طناز باقری؛ تهران: انتشارات میلکان‏‫، سال1397؛ در265ص؛ شابک9786007845738؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده 21م‬

در سال1941میلادی، چند دوست و همسایه، که در جزیره ی تحت اشغال «گرنزی»، در کنار هم به‌ سر می‌برند، و به دنبال قحطی ناشی از ورود ارتش بی‌رحم «نازی»، با دشواری هرچه تمام‌تر، و پس از مدت‌ها به گوشت، دسترسی پیدا کرده‌ اند، جشن کوچکی را، با گوشت کبابی، و سیب زمینی برشته، بدون هر گونه چاشنی، برپا می‌کنند؛ در راه بازگشت، با گشتی‌های «آلمانی» رودررو ‌می‌شوند، وقتی از آن‌ها پرسیده می‌شود، که چرا مقررات عبور و مرور را، زیر پا گذاشته‌ اند، در پاسخ به آن‌ها می‌گویند، در حال بازگشت، از یک انجمن کتاب‌خوانی هستند، و با عجله عنوان «انجمن ادبی و کیک سیب زمینی گرنزی» را برای انجمن برمی‌گزینند، تا دستگیر نشوند!؛

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 18/01/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ 04/09/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Pakinam Mahmoud.
683 reviews2,293 followers
December 14, 2022
"هذا ما يشدني للقراءة،تفصيل صغير يشدك إلي كتاب ما و الذي يقوم بدوره لإستدراجك إلي كتاب آخر،وهكذا دواليك..إنها حلقة غير متناهية من المتعة.."😍
و الكتاب دة حياخد مكان مميز داخل هذه الحلقة:)

جمعية غيرنزي للأدب وفطيرة قشر البطاطا رواية للكتابتين البريطانيتين ماري آن شيفر وآني باروز ..
الكاتبة الأساسية هي ماري آن ولكنها رحلت قبل إكمال الرواية وأتمتها بعد مرضها ابنة شقيقها آني باروز..
الرواية لها فيلم بنفس الإسم و صُدر في عام ٢٠١٨...

تدور أحداث الرواية عام ١٩٤٦ بعد إنتهاء الحرب العالمية الثانية و هي كلها عبارة عن رسائل متبادلة بين كاتبة مشهورة وأعضاء جمعية غيرنزي للأدب وهم أعضاء في نادي قراءة تم تأسيسه وقت الحرب أثناء إحتلال الألمان لجزر القنال ولجزيرة غرينزي بالتحديد...

علي الرغم من بساطة الفكرة إلا إن الرواية عميقة جداً و من خلال الرسائل إستطاعت الكاتبة أن تلقي الضوء علي ذكريات أهل الجزيرة عن الحرب و كيف تم عزلهم عن العالم لمدة خمس سنوات وترحيل أطفالهم لبلاد آخري للحفاظ علي حياتهم كما إنها أشارت أيضاً لبعض القصص عن معسكرات الأعتقال و اتكلمت عن عمال السخرة من دول وسط أوروبا و ما كانوا يعانوا منهم من معاملة غير آدمية...

الصراحة دي أول رواية أقراها عن الحرب وتكون مكتوبة بحنية كدة:)
فيها مشاعد صعبة و ظروف قاسية مروا بيها ولكن في نفس الوقت فيها دفء غير عادي...مشاعر جميلة...كلمات رقيقة..شخصيات حقيقية وحتحس إنك شايفهم قدامك و إنك تعرفهم من زمان وحتتمني تدخل جوة الرواية تشرب مع جولييت أو دوزي فنجان قهوة أو تتمشي علي البحر مع كيت البنوتة الصغيرة...
الرواية كمان فيها قصة حب في منتهي العذوبة.. يمكن تكون قصة الحب مفيهاش أحداث أوي ولكن فيها مشاعر جميلة جداً حتحس بيها بين السطور و يمكن بس من نظرات العيون:))

إسلوب السرد رائع و ممتع جداً و تقييمي كان حيكون ٥ نجوم لولا إن الجزء الأول كان في تطويل و شوية ملل بسيطة ولكن جاء الجزء التاني في منتهي الجمال ومش حتقدر تسيبه إلا لما تخلص الكتاب...

الكتاب دة أكبر دليل إن حب الكتب والقراءة ممكن يكسر الحواجز بين الناس و يقربهم فعلاً من بعض ودة اللي إنت حتحسه بالضبط في نهاية الكتاب:)
حتحس إنك لازم تروح غيرنزي.. حتحس إنك لازم تنضم لنادي القراءة بتاعهم و أكيد حتحس إنك نفسك تاكل معاهم فطيرة قشر البطاطا 😍
ينصح بها..جداً...❤️
Profile Image for Debbie.
686 reviews427 followers
December 2, 2022
Why I chose to read this book:
1. I was curious after seeing so many rave reviews on Goodreads;
2. I found my copy at a secondhand store; and,
3. November 2022 is my self-appointed "Wars of the 20th Century Historical Fiction Month".

Praises:
1. author Mary Ann Shaffer's unique and clever writing style by using a friendly-letter format to share the WWII experiences of citizens on the island of Guernsey (under German Occupation) was a most interesting reading experience! Some letters were witty, many were informative, a few were mean-spirited, and a portion were heartbreaking;
2. I loved how all the characters were believably developed! I was especially captivated by Elizabeth. Even though the protagonist, Juliet, never meets her, Elizabeth plays an integral part in this story; her strong presence binds the lives of the Islanders in various ways;
3. the heartwarming, whimsical touch of romance was just the right amount for me, with no cheesiness or vulgarity;
4. I appreciated the inclusion of maps on the end pages detailing the Channel Islands, with a close-up of Guernsey itself. I like to see the location of a book's setting; and,
5. Wow! Turnips were a most reviled food source! At least four different books that I've read this past month, including this one, strongly allude to this hateful root vegetable! I personally hate turnips as it is, so I don't think that I would have faired very well during this time period.

Overall Thoughts:
Letter writing is a dying art. This book proves that it should be brought back to life.

"Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad books."

Recommendation?
Think that you've read enough WWII historical fiction stories? Please, just read at least one more - this one!
Profile Image for Sherif Metwaly.
467 reviews3,296 followers
July 16, 2021

المصادفات السعيدة تترك أعظم الأثر، وهذه الرواية كانت مصادفة من أجمل ما يكون. في ليلةٍ ما، وبعد يوم عصيب في الجامعة، أبحث في مكتبتي عن عنوان يجذبني للقراءة فلا أجد، أمسك بالهاتف ولا أجد، أفتح الجودريدز لأشاهد ما يقرأه الأصدقاء لعل اسم كتاب أو مراجعة تنتشلني من حالة الضيق، ولا أجد أيضا؛ يظهر اسم الرواية أمامي بالصدفة في قائمة الترشيحات التي تظهر أعلى يمين الموقع، جمعية ماذا؟، فطيرة قشر البطاطا؟، ابتسمت فبدأت أخرج من حالة الضيق، وانجذبت أكثر للرواية بعدما وجدت تقييمها المرتفع وقد قرأها ما يقارب النصف مليون قارئ من مختلف البلاد واللغات!، يبدو أني وجدت ما أبحث عنه، أبدأ في قراءة أولى الصفحات، أنهي مائة صفحة في نفس الليلة، ويكاد قلبي يطير فرحًا من جمال ما أقرأ.

يا الله!، هذه الرواية عجيبة، لا ليست عجيبة بالوصف الدقيق، ربما كلمة فريدة تصفها بشكل أفضل. فريدة لأني لم أقرأ رواية عن الحرب، وتحديدًا عن العرب العالمية الثانية الأكثر دموية في تاريخ البشرية تقريبا، ولا أجد فيها نقطة دم واحدة، ولا تكتفي بالحديث عن القتل والانتهاك، أو تركز على ذلك الألم الذي يطرد النوم من عينيك ويدمي قلبك من الغضب والحزن. لا لن تجد كل هذا هنا، ربما تجد بعض الحزن النابع من الشفقة على ما عاناه أبطال هذه الرواية في الماضي، ولكن ما تركز عليه الرواية هنا، وما سيبهرك، ما ستجده أمامك من جمال وحب يملأ سطور كل صفحة، وما ستعيشه من سلام نفسي يتركك في النهاية مع انطباع نهائي هو: هذه أجمل وألطف رواية قرأتها عن الحرب.

تبدأ الرواية برسالة من أحد سكان جزيرة غرينزي التابعة للتاج البريطاني، موجهة للكاتبة جولييت الساكنة بلندن، والتي حقق كتابها الأخير الذي يسرد وقائع وقصص لبريطانيين عاشوا الحرب العالمية الثانية نجاحًا كبيرًا، فقرأه أحد سكان الجزيرة، وراسلها كمعجب، وأخبرها أنه أحد أعضاء نادي أدبي يدعى جمعية غرينزي للأدب تم تأسيسه أثناء احتلال الألمان للجزيرة، فتنجذب الكاتبة للرسالة ولاسم الجمعية الطريف، ويبدأ التعارف بينهما، لتصبح هذه الرسائل بداية لرحلة تخوضها الكاتبة بين سكان الجزيرة، حيث تسافر إليهم وتتعرف على أعضاء الجمعية، وتنهمر الحكايات تباعًا ولا تتمنى أن تتنهى.

تمضي الرواية على هيئة رسائل متبادلة بين الكاتبة وباقي أطراف الحكاية، وباقي أطراف الحكاية هم أعضاء جمعية غرينزي للأدب، وناشر أعمالها، وصديقتها. أشير هنا إلى أنني أول مرة أقرأ رواية مكتوبة على هيئة رسائل، ويبدو أنني من الآن سأبحث عن الروايات التي كُتبت بنفس الطريقة، على أمل أن أجد بها نفس المتعة والجمال.

في جمعية غرينزي للأدب ستجد شخصيات تتمنى لو تخرج من صفحات الرواية لتصاحبها في الواقع وإلى الأبد، ستجد الجدة الحانية التي تشمل الكل بعطفها، والأنثى متواضعة الجمال التي تغدق على الجميع من حنانها واهتمامها، وستجد الطفلة المشاكسة والبريئة في نفس الوقت، ستجد العجوز الذي أهلكت سنين العمر جسده دون أن تنال من جمال روحه، وذلك الصبي المقبل على الحياة رغم فقدان أسرته، ستندهش من كل هذا الجمال الذي نجا من ويلات الحرب، وهذه السَكِينة المغلفة للرسائل، وهذا الهدوء المسيطر عليك وأنت تقرأ.

وسط هذا الجمال ستأخذك الحكايات والذكريات المتبادلة بين أعضاء الجمعية وبين جولييت إلى الماضي الأليم، ستعيش معهم مآسيهم، وسيحكي كل واحد منهم حكايته مع الحرب، ومع من رافقوهم، من نجوا ومن فارقوا الحياة، ولكن ستجد في حاضرهم العزاء الأمثل لكل ذلك الألم، ستجد وسط حكاياتهم عن القصف وضرب المدافع ورصاص الرشاشات جنديًا يُحب، وجنديًا يُهرّب الطعام لسكان الجزيرة، وفي المقابل يؤوي أهل الجزيرة جنديًا هاربًا من جحيم الحرب لم يتحمل الدم والقتل المأمور بارتكابه ضد أبرياء. هنا الإنسانية مجردة من الشوائب، والرضا رغم قسوة الظروف، والصبر على الألم، وإخراج الجمال من وسط القبح، هنا الأمل وسط الضياع، والضوء وسط الظلام، هنا ما لا تتوقعه من رواية تتحدث عن الحرب، ولأجل كل هذا، هذه الرواية فريدة.

تمت
Profile Image for Ruth.
Author 10 books467 followers
November 18, 2008
I won an ARC of this book either from the NYer or from the publisher. I forget which, as it's been sitting around for a while.

This epistolary novel is something I should have loved. I generally like novels in letters, it’s almost like peering into lighted windows at night as you pass, sewing the bits of life seen there into a coherent whole.

It’s fun, this book, in its witty comments, sort of the way I wish I could talk all the time. Yet, about halfway through it began to pale. Everybody in the book writes witty letters, but they are all witty in much the same way. The authors have taken pains to write clearly different characters, but their manner of writing letters boils them down to the same soup.

I also began to tire of all these characters who are characters. As in, “Isn’t he a character?" Just too many odd bits of spice milling around.

Add to that, the unsatisfactory conclusion, where everything is tied up in the nice pink ribbon of The Happy Ending. My disbelief refused to be suspended.

Still, if you enjoy a bon mot as much as I do, it’s a fun, if frothy, read.
Profile Image for L A i N E Y.
396 reviews672 followers
December 14, 2019
How can you write a review for a book that put perpetual smile on your face for 277 pages??

Definition of “supremely-enjoyable-while-reading” kind of book for me: so delightful, real funny and warm.


Five long years since I first put this on my tbr shelf, should have read it a lot sooner...


rating: ★★★★½

Profile Image for Beverly.
775 reviews266 followers
July 22, 2018
Such a beautiful book, I wish I owned it as a real book, instead of on my Kindle, because I would reread it right now. The title is terrible or I would have tried it out sooner. It sounds so kitschy and is rather hard to pronounce too. Potato Peel Pie is a tongue twister!
Written by Mary Ann Shaffer who was a librarian, an editor, and a great family storyteller, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, is an epistolary novel about the trials of the people living in the Channel Islands, in particular, Guernsey, during the German occupation of World War 2.
I learned a lot, but in an entirely easy and fun way so you don't realize it, as you're reading an amazing book.
The only book ever written by Shaffer, she put her whole heart and soul in it and it is lovely. It's witty and makes you smile, even through your tears. She became ill before finishing and her niece finished it, who was the other family storyteller.
It is a love story, a story about courage under horrific conditions and a story about human resilience.
December 30, 2020
Mejor no saber de qué trata, déjate llevar, léelo, no te arrepentirás.

Los libros llegan a los lectores perfectos en los momentos oportunos, y este lo fue. En un momento delicado comencé a leerlo, sin prisa, disfrutando de cada carta, de los personajes que iba descubriendo en cada una de ellas, contando su "tranquila vida" en un momento crucial de la historia, en un rincón olvidado del planeta.
Me ha emocionado mucho este libro por su sencillez, por la generosidad de sus personajes, por el dramatismo que esconde la historia contada de una manera muy sensible pero sin escenas dantescas, en un tono muy sosegado, por el poso que me ha dejado... una maravilla.
Profile Image for ij.
212 reviews169 followers
August 18, 2016
This book is a fictional collection of letters, telegrams, and notes centered on an author, Juliet Ashton, who connects with the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (Society). The letters are primarily about residences of Guernsey during the occupation by the Germany Army, during WWII.

The Society came about due to friends being caught out, by the Army, after curfew. These friends had just enjoyed a meal of roasted pig, which was a novelty after the occupation. Not wanting to give the real reason for being out one of the group, Elizabeth, concocted the story of being at a literary club meeting.

Juliet is looking for subject matter for a couple of projects and becomes interested in the people she communicates with in Guernsey. There are many interesting characters for Juliet to interact with and they seem just as enthusiastic as she is to correspond. Juliet finds enough information about Guernsey, the occupation, and the Society to complete volumes.

This was a fun read, learning the many different characters, their personalities, how they dealt with the occupation, and how their lives faired after the war.

If you liked 84 Charing Cross Road you will probably like this book, too.

Profile Image for Bionic Jean.
1,214 reviews1,003 followers
January 22, 2023
Don't let the title put you off. Or the fact that it has two authors (the second recruited apparently when the first, her aunt, sadly became too ill to complete it.) Or the fact that it is a series of letters, or what literary types call an "epistolary novel". Or the whispering on the grapevine that it's a cosy piece, mostly read by women. All these tended to make me hesitate. But I'm so glad I persevered.

The book has a post-war setting, but much of the action refers to the Nazi Occupation of Guernsey during World War II. I was dubious that American authors would really capture the feel of these times for Guernsey folk, or the nuances of life on such a small island. I was wrong.

The island characters are a delight. The viewpoint character with her London-based world less so, though I appreciated that there needed to be a contrast here. Neither does the novel pull any punches when describing events in Nazi Concentration camps. To cover such a broad spectrum of experience and mood requires a skilful author, whom we have.

Enough has been written elsewhere giving descriptions of this novel. It seems to be the sort of novel you either love or hate. I personally enjoyed it a lot and found it to have a unique angle on WWII fiction. There was one flaw however. I did find that the ending was somewhat hackneyed and totally predictable.

Has it been made into a film yet? If not, I can guarantee that some bright spark will want to adapt it. I'm not sure the letter format will make for an easy transition. One can but hope.
Profile Image for Dem.
1,177 reviews1,067 followers
March 1, 2022
Have to admit when this book was recommended to me I was a little worried as for one I found the title strange and two I did not find the blurb very enticing. I am not going to try and sumarize the story as I feel I could not do it justice. I found this novel wounderful and I was lucky to be able to curl up on my couch while the wind and rain howled outside(end of May!!) and finish the last 150 pages of this book and enjoy it I did. The story of the occupation of Guernsey is facinating and really well told in this book and the story of Elizabeth really stays with you. However would have given it 5 stars only felt characters a little confusing at times and also juliet story a little predictable and the fact that the islanders was to quick to trust Juliet and the responsibality they gave her a little unbelievable but again I am picking at staws really. There is so much in this book that makes it an excellent story and an education in itself and would have given it 4.5 stars if I was able to. This one is a definate case of "Dont judge a book by its cover". A wonderful read.
Profile Image for Cheri.
1,686 reviews2,242 followers
August 29, 2018
4.5 Stars

”We'll meet again
Don't know where
Don't know when
But I know we'll meet again some sunny day
Keep smiling through
Just like you always do
'Till the blue skies drive the dark clouds far away”

-- We’ll Meet Again,Vera Lynn / Frank Sinatra, Songwriters: Hughie Charles / Ross Parker

Published posthumously in August of 2008, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society recalls the occupation of the Western European Channel Islands during WWII through letters and telegrams, which sounds very basic and to the point, and leaves out all the charm and emotions involved. Relaying the thoughts of a host of those who lived on these islands during the days of occupation, the struggles to survive, this is - at its heart - filled with a charm that borders on quirky, but with a charm that brings the 1940s era to life. And yes, the occupation creates much hardship, and life is not always charming, but it never veers so far or so long, but serves more as a shadow that fades in the light from these characters.

”I can’t think of anything lonelier than spending the rest of my life with someone I can’t talk to, or worse, someone I can’t be silent with.”

I loved the back and forth, the epistolary nature of this novel, with the slow revealing of secrets, the day in and day out of life on these islands, the nature of busybodies to inject themselves to make sure the “truth” is heard, all of the life stories, and the love of literature, itself.

This story more or less begins with a letter sent from Dawsey Adams, in Guernsey, to Juliet, in London. He has a book that once belonged to her, her name and address written on the inside cover, and is hoping she can help him locate a bookshop in London that might have more by this author, Charles Lamb.

”The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society came into being because of a roast pig we had to keep secret from the German soldiers, so I feel a kinship to Mr. Lamb.”

In her response to him, she writes:

”Perhaps there is some secret sort of homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers. How delightful if that were true.”

Which is exactly how I felt when I was reading this - it had found me at a perfect time.

”That’s what I love about reading: one tiny thing will interest you in a book, and that tiny thing will lead you onto 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.”

And that’s what this was for me. Sheer enjoyment.

Recommended


Many thanks to the Public Library system, and the many Librarians that manage, organize and keep it running, for the loan of this book!
Profile Image for El Librero de Valentina.
256 reviews17.3k followers
August 19, 2018
¡Lo amé! De principio a fin Juliet, sus cartas y los habitantes de Guernsey se quedarán en nuestro corazón.

Reseña pronto, en el canal :)
Profile Image for Terrie (mostly "in" now) Robinson.
357 reviews518 followers
July 21, 2020
"The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" by Mary Ann Shaffer was a delightful read!

What book lover doesn't love a book about reading books? I heard about this one from a post on one of the book club groups I belong to on Facebook. I knew of the history of the Nazi Occupation of the Channel Islands during WWII and this book piqued my interest! I immediately added it to my TBR list and then ordered it from Thriftbooks. When it arrived I devoured it!

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is a book club that is formed quickly as an alibi for members caught breaking the islands curfew by German soldiers patrolling the island. The gatherings continued as a ruse to hide the lie. What grew from this were deeply loving and supportive friendships and a common bond through the love books.

In Post-war London, Writer, Juliet Ashton, looking for a subject for her next book, receives a letter from Dawsey Adams, a Guernsey Island resident and book club member. Juliet writes a letter back to Dawsey, which begins a letter writing chain of correspondence from other residents, containing fresh memories of Guernsey life during the war. Intrigued by the stories of resilience and survival, and the possibility as a subject for her next book, Juliet decides to visit the island.

This author writes with humor and wit that helps to deflect the intense realities of the Nazi Occupation. Through the characterizations, there is overwhelming love of their island from these residents whose lives were impacted by fear, starvation and a deep longing for the life they knew before the war. Their caring and nurturing of one another was not lost with this war but grew tenfold as a result. Although, there are references to the devastation of the occupation, this book is mostly about the recovery and healing process that begins afterwards.

When I hear about books, such as this one, about WWII I have an unexplained push to reading about it, embracing it as soon as possible. This is exactly how I felt about getting my hands on this sweet little read and I'm so glad I did.

I highly recommend this book to all who love to read!
Profile Image for Cyndi.
2,310 reviews95 followers
February 13, 2018
A beautiful book! The whole thing is told in letters. After WWII the world is trying to recover. A young woman, Juliet, wrote funny stories using a pseudonym for the paper to bring up morale. They have been published in a book. Now she is looking for her next project when she receives a letter from Guernsey.
Dawsey came across a book she owned by Charles Lamb. Since her name and address were in the flyleaf he decided to write her and let her know he had the book and loved it.
So began a correspondence between the two about books. She learns about The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and how it came to be during the five years the island was occupied by German soldiers. And decides to write a book about it.
This is a beautifully written book about the war and how it affected everyone. There are horror stories that are heartbreaking and stories of tremendous courage. But, mostly stories of survival on both sides of the conflict.
I recommend the audio. The actors are wonderful!
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