Wednesday, February 18, 2009
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
The setting is London and Guernsey (an island in the English Channel) in 1946, just after WWII. The story unfolds via letters, a format that I love. Juliet Ashton, a main character, is a writer (from London) with an adventurous spirit and a deep, deep love of books. (She called off an engagement over books! My kind of gal!) She forms a relationship with a book club in Guernsey and decides to tell their story about the Nazi occupation.
I found the book to be very witty and funny, and at the same time very serious. The subject matter is a tough one - the nightmare of Hitler's actions. The authors don't let the reader off the hook. While much of the book is light-hearted, it's anchored in the very real need to survive atrocities. And some people didn't. In addition, the authors don't make it easy to form clear lines of good and bad, even among the German soldiers. Oh, and there's a love story, too!
I am always grateful about a book that opens my eyes to history and challenges my perspectives. This one did just that.
The book left me with a deeper sense of the importance of thinking for one's self. Read this book. And thanks to MEP for the recommendation!