The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

Possibly the strangest title of any book I have read.

Mum and I both had this book on our Christmas lists this year, and conveniently both bought it for each other 🙂

Last week I had to make an overnight trip to Germany for some meetings so had around seven hours of train journey to fill, without the luxury of being able to watch the changing landscapes because I was travelling both ways in the evening. (I love watching out of train windows… the route between Liege and Aachen that I took is particularly beautiful as the train goes through steep green valleys following the river)

So I grabbed this book as I quickly packed that morning (last minute of course) and had finished it by the time I got home the next night.

I really enjoyed this book! It’s the post-war story of a women writer called Julia living in London, who by chance starts corresponding with the members of a book club on Guernsey. The entire book is written in the form of letters – between Julia and her editor, her friends, the man courting her, and of course with the quirky and captivating islanders.

It’s a book about the occupation and is quite often serious and moving, but without feeling heavy. It is immensly readable and the characters wonderfully likable. The main character Julia has a wonderful dry humour which made me feel like I would get along with her very well in real life!

I often find myself reading books which, although I love, leave me feeling a bit emotionally washed out, I think because I get so absorbed in them. This one was nice because it was light without being vapid, and the ending seriously made me want to clap my hands.

I didn’t, because I was on a crowded train, but I did set it down with a big smile on my face, only to pick it up again three minutes later to re-read the last five pages…

So now I need a new reading recommendation. I’ve got a few non-fictions lined up to read, and I’m currently dipping in and out of the fascinating auto-biography of Carly Fiorina, Tough Choices, which my friend Linda at church gave me, but I need a new fiction book to get inspired by.

Read any good books recently?

(even better if you want to lend me your used copy so I don’t have to pay the exorbitant prices at one of the two English book shops in the city… 🙂