“I don’t want to be married just to be married. 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.” ― Mary Ann Shaffer, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society was a surprisingly upbeat and entertaining read despite the overall themes of war and loss. I am not often a fan of stories told only through the exchange of letters but authors Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows were able to keep me intrigued and engaged throughout the entirety of the novel.
Written mostly from the viewpoint of young writer, Juliet Ashton, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is a tale of the small island community of Guernsey and how they survived or didn’t survive an occupation during World War II. The book begins with Ashton anxious to begin a new writing project and through a chance communication over a book, Ashton sets her sights on the community of Guernsey and a “book club” that was formed during the war. She begins to fall in love with the community herself and becomes beloved by the residents she often visits…. well, most of them at least.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is filled with humor, well-rounded characters, history, and loss. Started by author Mary Ann Shaffer and finished by her niece Annie Barrows, the light-hearted but emotional book is told solely through the written communications between characters but the style doesn’t hinder the plot or the character development in any way.