Prashant's Reviews > The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer
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M 50x66
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Dec 16, 2011

it was amazing


I started this book about 3 months back and just couldn’t feel the compulsion to read it since. It remained in my to-read shelf for too long and I started it again just to clear it from my shelf.

So, how can I eventually love a book so much to give a 5-star rating which I very brutally abandoned after reading the first 30 or so pages.

Well, for starters let me confess that the name of the book is very confusing and it doesn’t give anything away about the story or even the genre. I being an arch enemy of history and even geography had no idea where or what is Guernsey and what happened during WW near the British Island. I simply found myself out of place while reading the initial pages of the book which made me abandon it in the early pages.

I hate my ignorance for keeping it at bay for so long but love my resilience for finally coming back to cherish it(self-preening?)
I really enjoyed this book. It’s one of those when you can’t read much in one sitting because you enjoy it so much you just don’t want it to finish quickly.

I read it in my room, while waiting for the metro(subway), while traveling before going to sleep and after getting awake. And every moment was as memorable as the other.


The book is written as an exchange of letters between Juliet and various residents of Guernsey Island. Juliet Ashton is an author who is looking for something new to write about. The year is 1946 and she receives a letter from Dawsey who lives on Guernsey and has by chance come into possession of a book owned by her. Dawsey happens to be a member of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. The unique name of the society comes as a surprise to her as to us and she started to enquire more. Thus began a correspondence of letters that leads to revelations related to the life of other members of the society and the Island during the German invasion of 1940-45.

Guernsey is a small Island near UK and at that time came under the authority of United Kingdom. When Germans wanted to realize their dream of showing ultimate domination by acquiring London during WW2 they started by taking into control the 2 isolated islands which were owned by UK, Guernsey and Jersey.

Guernsey Island

The book narrates the incidents that took place during the 6 years that the Germans were present on the Island and how the life of the Islanders was affected by the invasion. There are some gruesome details of the concentration camp of Ravensbruck which was used to imprison and torture the war prisoners.

The story unfolds beautifully when after a healthy correspondence of months Juliet decides to complete the novel by visiting Guernsey. Unlike 84 Charing Cross Road she did get to visit the place of her dreams and imagination. But as it is, this book was work of fiction so we could have expected that to happen.

The writing is very impressive and it’s not the kind of book which one and all can appreciate. But if you a book lover than I will repeatedly cajole and coax you to read this. Pretty Please !
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Comments (showing 1-8 of 8) (8 new)

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Kritika Swarup So made it till the end, and appreciated it to such extents.. seems it will be my next then!

Prashant You first have to complete the one you are reading :)

message 3: by Richard (new)

Richard Very enjoyable review, sir! Thank you also for providing the map.

Prashant Thanks Richard !

Sasha A 5 star review has to be of a book that I think about long after I have finished reading it...Guernsey Literary Club and Potato Peel Pie Society was for me such a book.

message 6: by Karyn (new)

Karyn I was just going to remove this one from my to read shelf because i couldn't remember why i had added it. The blurb isn't that great.

Then i saw you reviewed it. Great review, i'm gonna keep it here and try and find it :)

Prashant This definitely is worth reading Karyn. I am glad that you like the review.
I don't want to be pushy, but please find it soon.

Marion Kelly Terrific review sir! ! I too was a slow starter of the book..because it was letters..then I picked it up again..and read it ever available minute.
I was well aware of Guernsey and it's place in the war..but the book told me more of what had happened.
.A good DVD entitled " Island At War" may be of interest to some..once again..Guernsey story

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