L.E.a D.s Book Club discussion

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Books We're Reading > The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

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message 1: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
This discussion is for Guernsey only


message 2: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
I finally started reading Guernsey last night. I'm about 50 pages in. really enjoy it so far!


message 3: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Helen,

Yea! I really like the book and am so glad that you started it. I keep waiting for the authors to reveal the recipe for potato peel pie. I'm not sure it sounds too appetizing with regular potatoes, but maybe if one made it with yams …

Are you far enough in that I may ask you what you think of the characters so far? What about the styles of their letter writing? I wonder what kinds of pens they used, what their handwriting looked like. I can't imagine how people got through the Blitz and still managed to write beautifully, with wit and grace and verve, but I don't think that capability is something the authors made up. I won't ask you anything about the plot so that we don't spoil the story for anyone else.

I look forward to your thoughts

eagerly,

Ruth


message 4: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
I have just started this, but can I say that I love the way that Juliet writes! Especially her first letter to Sophie(?). She writes in such a vibrant, lively way that I find very inspiring. I am still quite new to letter writing myself, so perhaps some of this will rub off on me!

@Ruth, I love how you pose your comments. Should we all try letter style? It could be fun!


message 5: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Cassie,

Would you please explain the "@" before my name? Is that a Twitter convention? I know I've seen it, but I do not know what it means. (In my mind I live on a small desert island with lovely beaches and lots of paper, ink, and pens. And mailing bottles.)

I also love the way Juliet writes — and the way the others write, and am impressed by the authors' skill at maintaining so many letter-voices. I wish we got more of some of Juliet's responses; I'd like to read some os Sophie's letters.

I was swept away by everyone's charm and pluck in the face of the devastation (physical, emotional) wrought by the war, but then I admit I began to wonder whether it would be as attractive if one were dealing with it in person on a daily basis. But perhaps some of that euphoria was due to how very recently the war was over. I think having my flat demolished would make me rather irritable, especially if I lost my books.

The contrast the authors establish between London and Guernsey I thought was beautifully paced. They didn't rush us into thinking about it, and as it was laid out, there was never any call to choose between the different sufferings and courages.

And now I want to go to Guernsey. How do we raise money for a book club field trip? I wonder what effect this book has had on the Guernsey Islanders. Do they get plagued with requests for pen pals do you think? Or have they all succumbed to e-mail?

I'm not sure how far along you are, so I'm not sure what I can discuss. Forgive me if the above is written too

Obliquely,

Ruth


message 6: by Eepycanread (new)

Eepycanread | 5 comments Ruth, Your comments on the book make me want to go out right this minute and buy a copy. I read a library copy quite a long time ago, but your review makes me want to own it and read it again.

eepy


message 7: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
Dear Friends,

Yes, Ruth the @ is a part of twitter conversation but people also use it on Facebook. It is a way to tag specific people.

I am loving this book so far! I had a little bit of trouble getting into it but now I'm pretty far into it & really really enjoying it.

I like to imagine that I would be very good friends with Juliet. Maybe she'd write to me too?
& I agree, the contrast between the two places is beautifully set up.

About the time period. I haven't read very much from this period but it reminds me of some of the Reconstruction parts of Gone with the Wind (I've just read that one so many times). I would imagine that these periods are pretty similar.

Ruth, I hadn't thought about the modern day Guernsey (I will probably misspell that word about half the time here) Islanders. Interesting notion. I'd want to be penpals with someone from Guernsey!

It would be interesting to find out how accurate the authors' portrayals are. I wonder, did they read any first hand documents or anything?

Helen


message 8: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Eepy,

I was really quite taken by this book. It seems to me to be the perfect one with which to inaugurate an epistolary book club.

One of the unsung heroes of this book is, I think, the bookseller Juliet gets to find Lamb's biography. The authors ought to write a book about him. I can't make myself want a Nook or a Kindle. I want to hand down the books I love to others who will appreciate them, and I hope that someday someone (a great-grandchild perhaps) will read them and see my name on the flyleaf and understand that books, PHYSICAL books, connect us to each other. That seems to be one of the themes of this book.

Have you others met Dawsey yet? I have come to think of him (and you too for that matter)

Fondly,

Ruth


message 9: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Helen,

In the Acknowledgements at the end of the book, Shaffer writes that it
"required years of research and writing." What I also found interesting is that the book isn't the product of the kind of collaboration I had thought. I had supposed that the authors were in on it together from the start, that perhaps Shaffer was in charge of writing the Londoners' letters and Barrows the Islanders or that maybe one of them wrote the men's missives and the other the women's or something like that. But Shaffer gives "special thanks to my niece, Annie, who stepped in finish this book after unexpected health issues interrupted my ability to work shortly after the manuscript was sold." Barrows is an author in her own right, a writer of children's books. I wish we were given more details about how that all worked.

I haven't read GWTW, though I did see the movie. I think your comparison is probably very apt, though London didn't have the victors coming to reconstruct for them. I fancy the Brits felt more jubilant about the end of WWII than the southerners felt about the end of the Civil War. But the physical ruins and the reminders of the ordeal past seem as if they would have been very much the same.

I suspect that I would have been good friends with Sidney or possibly Amelia, though I would have liked Juliet very much. That feeling might be a function of age and it might not be true at all — I have some dear friends who are in their early twenties. My burning question is "what are the chances that Sidney Stark is related to Tony Stark of the Avengers?" Inquiring minds want to know.

Tell me how far along you are. I don't want to blurt out something before I ought but have so many questions I want to ask you others! I remain

Inquisitively yours,

Ruth


message 10: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
Ruth,

Ah, yes I was bad. I was taught that one should always read the book cover to cover (including those acknowledgments & things) & I don't always do that.

I do not believe that its a function of age! I'm 27 myself (not early twenties but still). & I love that you related this book to Tony Stark!

I'm about 70 pages in. I'll try to read more tonight, but then it may not be until next week that I'm able to read more (weekends are my busy time at work).

Helen


message 11: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Helen,

Yes, you are a patently immoral and irresponsible person for not reading the back of the book first. You will have to wear a scarlet letter of some sort (B for book? R for reader?) whenever you are signed on to Goodreads.

I read the Acknowledgements because I was looking to see if the authors talked about the process of writing. I thought there might be one of those book club chats that I find in so many books these days.

I can totally see Sidney wearing Iron and flying over Britain to hassle his authors about deadlines and deliver letters for Juliet. I imagine him doing it while wearing one of those dashing aviator scarves.

So I think (I left my book at home and am out for the day) that by now you have met Mark Reynolds and Adelaide Addison (Miss). What do you think of them? I was not expecting a Miss Addison, though I was not surprized to find a Mr. Reynolds. In fact, I was a little disappointed in his appearance. He seemed a bit of a stock character to me. I wonder if some agent or editor thought he should be added.

I have been thinking too of how we react to events of great moment, particularly those that go on for months or years. I know this is a work of fiction, but it seems to me that the stories the Islanders tell, the narratives onto which they hold to give meaning and coherence to their experiences, ring very true. I think the stories they choose to tell show another kind of heroism than that of which we usually think. It's not that there are no instances of people (especially Elizabeth) taking terrible risks and paying for them, but over and over we see these Islanders remembering the humour and warmth they were able to find. (And of course we know that Juliet wrote humour columns during the Blitz.) I'm still not sure that I'd want to eat potato peel pie though, given a choice.

I am sure that I would have a terrible time sending away my children the way the Islanders did. I remember reading _The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe_ when I was very young and I just couldn't wrap my mind around why parents would send their children to live with absolute strangers. I had no idea (still don't have really) what it meant that there was a war on. That is another kind of courage.

And I love the way the characters talk about the books they chose to read. When we've all read far enough, I would like to discuss Dawsey's remarks about Charles and Mary Lamb if that's all right.

Have I rattled on too long? I find so much in this book that asks to be considered, though I think it usually asks us kindly and gently. For now, I remain

Yours loquaciously,

Ruth


message 12: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dearest Guernsey Admirers,

This book has taken me by surprise! Never did I expect to be so involved with it! In fact I feared that I would be the snail of the reading crew, feeling guilty that I could read only a page or two a day. This is hardly the case!

Where is everyone in the book? I hesitate to say too much! (I LOATHE spoilers…most of the time). I have passed page 200 (cannot remember exactly at the moment).

What I will do is make a confession. As I have mentioned, this book has taken hold of me. When I know that I must put it down to attend to another task, I have developed a very bad habit of peeking ahead. I will flip a few pages forward to see who is involved in the next few correspondences and read snippets of conversation. So, though I said above that I loathe spoilers…I just can’t seem to help myself. In this case, it never seems to lessen my enjoyment when I get back to reading.

Bending my rules,
Cassie


message 13: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear Eepy,

Continue to read Ruth’s comments! It would be great to have you read it again. I would love to hear your thoughts on a second reading.

Cassie


message 14: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear Ruth,

It seems that I have taken a lengthy time to respond to you! Thank goodness for others with answers! However, I admire your letter-style approach and have chosen to adopt it for now.

I too would love to hear more often from Sophie! She and Juliet are such good friends, it seems a shame not to better see Sophie’s perspective.

A Guernsey field trip sounds wonderful! Along with your thoughts on penpals, I have wondered how this has impacted the tourism industry. I like to imagine it as a modern day version of the book’s description, but fear to discover otherwise.

Regarding Dawsey, I know exactly what you mean. I have felt this way for some time and have only grown fonder with time.

Regarding Shaffer, I would love to write to her I think! Well, I would love to receive a letter from her and happily write to her if she’s interested.

Oh, if only I had my book with me right now! There is more I would like to say, but feel it would be done better with references. Soon, perhaps.

Cassie


message 15: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear all,

I couldn't help myself. I finished the book.

...


message 16: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
Dear Friends,

Sorry for my absence! I have now read all of part I & will keep reading as time permits.

Mark Reynolds- Ruth I thought your description of him as a "stock character" was apt. At first I was reading & I thought he was perhaps the James Marsden of the book (perfect on paper but terribly wrong for the heroine) but as I read more I started to dislike him & he didn't deserve to be James Marsden anymore

I adore Isola. She is quickly becoming one of my favorite characters!

I really love that each character took one seemingly random book or author & spoke about them.

This book is really making me want to do more research about the time period & especially England. There are certain time periods that grab me & then I try to read as much on them as I can.

I'm reading as quickly as I can. & I have a notebook where I write observations & quotes. So many favorite quotes!
Oh & Ruth, your comment earlier about the greatness of real books. I have a quote for you from our dear Juliet, "Perhaps there is some secret sort of homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers. How delightful if that were true."
I think it must be true. That's how we found this lovely book.

Helen


message 17: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
I finished tonight! Comments to come tomorrow!


message 18: by Amber (new)

Amber (amberstults) | 5 comments Dear Friends,
I have been reading Juliet's correspondence with her friends. About a week ago, I finished the first part of the letters which ended in late May 1946. To be honest, I could not bring myself to read any further. I did not want something awful to happen such as Juliet falling into the clutches of Mark Reynolds before she could travel to Guernsey.

My curiousity prevailed and I have continued reading. I'm so glad I did!

Has anyone noticed the distance between London and Guernsey? I think travel by plane or boat would be worrisome.

Regards,
Amber


message 19: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear Helen,

I too am a fan of Isola. It would be hard for me to resist staying up late at night to hear her wonderous stories! And I would happily let her feel the bumps on my head.

Cassie


message 20: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear Amber,

So glad you did! If this group hadn't been created I might never have started it and I'm terribly glad I did!

Mark Reynolds made me sick from the first moment his name appeared. And to think he made Juliet giddy! Yiyiyi...

Cassie


message 21: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear Young at Heart,

Does anyone else long to get up to mischief with Kit?

a kindred spirit,
Cassie


message 22: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
Dear Amber,

Yes I am so glad you finished too! I will say that part II was the best part! I got through it really quickly & still wished there was more when I was done!

Helen


message 23: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
Dear Kindred Spirit,

oh yes, I would have loved to run around the island with Kit! What a great place to grow up!

Helen


message 24: by Amber (new)

Amber (amberstults) | 5 comments Dear friends,
It's funny how a letter from a stranger can set your life on a different path, isn't it?

After all, without the first letter from Dawsey to Juliet, Isola wouldn't know how to read head bumps, would she?

I wonder what she would make of my head.
~*~Amber~*~


message 25: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear All,

Apologies for my longer-than-I-expected absence. Am I right in thinking that everyone has read the whole book now? May I write what I like without fear of spoiling the plot?

I keep wondering how Juliet's book about Elizabeth turned out. I wish we could read THAT as well. I think about how much having Kit around might influence the writing of such a biography and the kinds of truth one might choose to tell. How does one write for the world the reasons that a mother chooses heroism over staying with her child? Yet someone like Elizabeth probably found her clearest expression of maternal love in trying to rescue that escaped worker, in setting an example for Kit to be brave and true and honorable. We should talk about Elizabeth, I think.

I wish to add my voice to those praising Isola. She is splendid. What did others make of the way she handled Sydney's revelation?

And what about the wonderful Oscar Wilde twist? I did not see that coming but thought it was delightful.

When I was reading the first part of the book, I wondered how the authors were going to continue the letter-writing narrative once Juliet got to Guernsey, but I thought they were quite deft about it.

What did you all think about the way the Islanders reacted to the Germans? I wonder how many of the invaders were true Nazis?

I was heartily glad when Juliet dumped Mark once for all. But I can see how after the deprivations of a long and terrifying war someone like Mark who offers fun and privilege might be very attractive — for a time.

I am very eager to know what else you all have been thinking about this book. Please enlighten

Your curious reading companion,

Ruth


message 26: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
P.S. I found that passage of Dawsey's letter about the Lambs that I wanted to discuss. It's from 15 April, 1946, pages 113-114 in my book. Really the whole letter choked me up — the description of Charles and Mary's life and Dawsey's eloquent and plain empathy. But the bit that got hold of me most was where he writes,

"Picture them: he had to watch her like a hawk for the awful symptoms, and she herself could tell when the madness was coming on and could do nothing to stop its coming—that must have been worst of all. I imagine him sitting there, watching her on the sly, and her sitting there, watching him watching her. How they must have hated the way the other one was forced to live."

There's something about the complexity of Dawsey's insight, his apprehension not only of Charles' and Mary's individual experiences but of their mutual comprehension of the effect they had on each other's lives that takes my mental breath away.

I don't know much about the Lambs, but now I want to read the biography Dawsey read.

Was anyone else struck by this letter?

R


message 27: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Folks,

I'm just wondering — is anybody out there?

Ruth


message 28: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear Ruth,

Boo!

Sorry, I still need to take the time to read your thoughts above. It bothers me to skim and give a hurried, thoughtless response.

I will add, that I passed the book on to my mother and encouraged her to read it.

Soon to return with more wit,
Cassie

P.S. Amber, I loved that thought. :)


message 29: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Cassie,

I just sent a copy to my mom and sister to read as well. _Guernsey_ is definitely a book to share> I hope you'll let us know what your mom thinks of it.

Meawhile, I will await the sharing of your thoughts with bated breath and

Much anticipation,

Ruth


message 30: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
Dear ladies,

I love that you sent books in to family in Juliet fashion :)

Will return with more thoughts probably Monday.

Helen


message 31: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Helen,

Of course, the question is whether our families will, in fact, read the book. My sister often prefers books in which the romance is less discreet. Still, I am

Hopeful,

Ruth


message 32: by Amber (new)

Amber (amberstults) | 5 comments Dear Ruth,
You were quite a dear to send the book to your mom and sister. Perhaps they need a little push from your fellow letter-writers to see what they thought of the book?

Giggling to myself,
~Amber~


message 33: by Ruth (last edited Apr 22, 2013 02:02PM) (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Amber,

A letter-writing campaign! If ever a cause deserved the efforts of epistolarians (if that's not a word, it ought to be), reading is it. However, to be fair, my mum and sis have had the book for less than a week so perhaps we should give them a few days before inundating them with missives.

I shall, however, mention to them the fate that might be in store should they try to avoid reading the book.

Of course, they might like the idea of getting mail so that might prove to be an incentive to put off reading the book.

I'll keep you posted, and am

Yours truly,

Ruth


message 34: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dear Amber and Ruth,

I do like this campaign idea! You can count on me if such a thing happens!

It's hard to say whether my mother will read it or not, but I shall ask again soon.

Cassie


message 35: by Cassie (last edited Apr 22, 2013 06:13PM) (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
Dearest Ruth,

Without the book in hand it is so hard for me to remember the details for proper answers. I hate to admit this. I tend to get very involved in whatever I am currently reading and it can make it difficult to pull up the emotions and thoughts related to other works. I really should take more notes as I read. If only it didn't slow the process so! Perhaps a reflective journal after reading if I can strap myself down for the ten or twenty extra minutes necessary? I will try!

I too would love to read Elizabeth's story. Do you think that a statue should be resurrected in her honor? It would not surprise me a bit if Juliet suggested? Perhaps Isola and Kit would build one from found materials! (That or Isola might take on a new hobby and teach Kit along the way. Statue carvers! What a fun thought!)

"How does one write for the world the reasons that a mother chooses heroism over staying with her child? Yet someone like Elizabeth probably found her clearest expression of maternal love in trying to rescue that escaped worker, in setting an example for Kit to be brave and true and honorable. We should talk about Elizabeth, I think."

I love what you said here. It's reading this that reminds me why having a book club is so worthwhile.

The German-Islander relationship was interesting to me. It was dramatized in a believable way, observing the grayness of the world rather than striking everyone with a Nazi uniform as a demon from Hades.

If I could visit I would allow Isola to teach me her latest hobby and roll down hills with Kit.

Cassie


message 36: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Cassie and Amber,

I called my mother to warn her that if she does not read TGL&PPPS, she will be covered by an avalanche of correspondence (well, I didn't put it quite that way). We'll what effect that produces.

Cassie, tell your mum that we're on a maternal reading quest so she's knows that she's not the only maternal unit under pressure. I'm looking forward to hearing what my mom has to say about the book because she about ten years old during the time of the book and remembers the events of WWII

Feelingly,

Ruth


message 37: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Cassie wrote: "Dearest Ruth,

Without the book in hand it is so hard for me to remember the details for proper answers. I hate to admit this. I tend to get very involved in whatever I am currently reading and it ..."


Observant Cassie,

I'll bet you remember more than you think. If you want to look up passages, you can sneak over to Amazon.com and do a Look Inside the book search to jog your memory. I won't tell.

I think our conversation here is a sort of collective journal. I like sticky notes (the paper kind, not the virtual computer version). I also don't want to slow down when I am enthralled by a story, so I just slap a bit of color by the bits I think I'll want to remember later and continue on (Post-Its are definitely one of the great accomplishments of civilization).

I think your notion that the most fitting statue would be a found-art creation is spot on. I could see Isola and Kit starting it and other island folks adding to it as the years go by (and maybe the ever-charming MISS Addy sneaking off with parts). And — to speak to your apt comment about "the grayness of the world rather than striking everyone with a Nazi uniform as a demon from Hades" — there could be another statue next to it commemorating Kit's father, one that brings out into the open the commonality of people and the love Elizabeth and Christian had. (Full disclosure moment: I have little tolerance for Nazis as a group. Many, many members of my father's family were murdered in the camps; it was a topic too painful for those who were living at the time to discuss directly. But I can understand how someone, especially someone like Elizabeth, could see beyond the uniform to find the decency there.)

The other instance of sympathy that struck me was in Henry Toussant's letter (pp. 172-172 in my book). As you probably remember, he writes about the brothel the Germans set up on the island, and toward the end of his epistle, describes how the "brothel ladies" (and I love how his oxymoronic phrase captures both the truth of what those women were forced to become yet conveys Toussant's continued respect for them) were drowned when the Germans tried to send them back after D-Day. He tells Juliet,


You could see those poor drowned women—their yellow hair (bleached hussies, my aunt called them) spread out in the water, washing against the rocks. "Served them right, the whores," my aunt said—she and my mother laughed.

It was not to be borne!"



Toussant understands that these women were regarded as soiled laundry (the image of the hair washing on the rocks like clothes taken to the shore to be cleaned on the stones) and is so outraged by his aunt and mother's response that he calls them "dirty old bats." Both women stop speaking to him, and confides to Juliet, "I find it all very peaceful." I found the poignant combination of empathy, understated outrage, and humor of Henry's letter very moving.

But Juliet's book about Elizabeth is to be her monument. I would be pleased if my life were to be found worthy of such a tribute, though honestly, I'd rather not be shot.

Ruth


message 38: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Hey Everybody,

Am I the only one interested in continuing this conversation? I just re-read the book and there are so many passages I'd love to discuss. For instance, it was only one my second time through that I realized how the authors set so many parallels between Juliet and Elizabeth that it makes perfect sense that Juliet would be able to fit right into the social economy of the Literary Society. Maybe you all picked up on this the first time through and it's too obvious for consideration.

But if anyone out there is still up for exploring this book some more, then I'm

Yours truly,

Ruth


message 39: by Cassie (new)

Cassie | 31 comments Mod
(My last message did not save properly. I will return.)


message 40: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Cassie,

I hate it when that happens! I await your return with

Great anticipation,

Ruth


message 41: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Reader-Friends,

Did anyone else notice Juliet's comment about having a "golliwog"? I didn't know what that was, so I looked it up on Dogpile: http://www.dogpile.com/info.dogpl/sea....

I was a little appalled, especially by Juliet's obliviousness to the offensiveness of such a plaything. It seems out of character for her.

Was anyone else familiar with golliwogs before this?

Ruth


message 42: by HelenLee (new)

HelenLee | 15 comments Mod
Dear friends,
So did your families in fact read the book?
I, too, believe that Juliet's book was a monument for Elizabeth.
The 2 really were parallel ladies. No wonder Juliet fit so well into the Island.
I did not know what golliwogs were. I didn't quite catch where they were mentioned but it does seem out of character for Juliet to be oblivious to them. I do wonder, was it possibly a sign of the times? Those are offensive playthings no matter what era we are in, but perhaps they just weren't as sensitive at that time?

Helen


message 43: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Dear Helen,

I have to ask my mom whether she's gotten around to it yet.

I wrestled with that "sign of the times" question too, but the authors set Juliet up as ahead of her time — look at how comfortable she (and Isola) is with Sydney's homosexuality, with Kit's "illegitimacy." And so much of the book seems to be about judging how to discriminate among people — who's a good German (Christian); who's a bad person (MISS Adelaide); who's fit to marry (Dawsey but not Robert nor Mark). In fact, the golliwog reference comes when Juliet is telling Sydney about how prepared for Rob to move in: "I took my golliwog off the bed and put her in the attic. Now my flat was meant for two, instead of one" (p. 24).

But after I hit submit on my last post I started thinking that maybe the fact Juliet retained affection for a black doll (can't say African American I guess since it's a British dolly) — even an offensive one that caricatures a group of people — well into adulthood is supposed to be another sign of her ability to love what is Other.

Am I making excuses for a character in a novel because I like her so much? I have been known to judge fiction people too

Fondly,

Ruth


message 44: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Feiertag | 92 comments Mod
Helen et al.,

My mom told me today that she finished _Guernsey_. She said that at first she thought that it was a pretty frivolous read, but then she got quite caught up in the characters. But in the end she was disappointed. She felt that the good characters were all perfect, with some quirks but no real flaws. I understand her point. She also thought that the finish was trite and too neat.

I think her criticisms are valid, but I have to say that a lot of modern literature seems to go no where, and I'm okay with a book about primarily kind people who have struggled and are now getting to settle down a chance at happiness.

Cassie, did your mom have an opportunity to read _TGL&PPPS_ yet? I'd love to know what she thought too.

Ruth


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