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4 Local Warehouse Literature- A to Z

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

by and

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society Cover

 

Staff Pick

Perfect for book groups, a charming series of letters make up this short novel set in post-WWII Europe. The correspondents, drawn together by their love of books and affection for each other, collectively tell a moving tale of endurance and friendship in the shadow of war.
Recommended by Danielle, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"I wonder how the book got to Guernsey? Perhaps there is some sort of secret homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers."

January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she's never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb...

As Juliet and her new correspondent exchange letters, Juliet is drawn into the world of this man and his friends — and what a wonderfully eccentric world it is. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society — born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi when its members were discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island — boasts a charming, funny, deeply human cast of characters, from pig farmers to phrenologists, literature lovers all.

Juliet begins a remarkable correspondence with the society's members, learning about their island, their taste in books, and the impact the recent German occupation has had on their lives. Captivated by their stories, she sets sail for Guernsey, and what she finds will change her forever.

Written with warmth and humor as a series of letters, this novel is a celebration of the written word in all its guises, and of finding connection in the most surprising ways.

Review:

Though it deals with a dark period in history, this first novel is an essentially sunny work. It affirms the power of books to nourish people enduring hard times — not so surprising, since Mary Ann Shaffer, who died earlier this year, had a long career as a librarian, bookseller and editor. Her niece Annie Barrows, a children's author, finished the manuscript after Shaffer fell ill; between them,... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Review:

"Reminiscent of Helene Hanff's 84 Charing Cross Road, this is a warm, funny, tender, and thoroughly entertaining celebration of the power of the written word. This marvelous debut novel, sure to have book club appeal, is highly recommended." Library Journal (Starred Review)

Review:

"I can't remember the last time I discovered a novel as smart and delightful as this one, a world so vivid that I kept forgetting this was a work of fiction populated with characters so utterly wonderful that I kept forgetting they weren't my actual friends and neighbors. Treat yourself to this book, please — I can't recommend it highly enough." Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love

Review:

"Though it deals with a dark period in history, this first novel is an essentially sunny work....The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is a sweet, sentimental paean to books and those who love them." The Washington Post Book World

Review:

"Elizabeth and Juliet are appealingly reminiscent of game but gutsy '40s movie heroines. The engrossing subject matter and lively writing make this a sure winner, perhaps fodder for a TV series." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Written in the form of letters (a lost art), this novel by an aunt-and-niece team has loads of charm, especially as long as Juliet is still in London corresponding with the society members." Booklist

Synopsis:

London, 1946: writer Juliet Ashton receives a letter from a stranger, a founding member of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. And so begins a remarkable tale of Guernsey during the German occupation, and about a society as extraordinary as its name.

Synopsis:

As London is emerging from the shadow of World War II, writer Juliet Ashton discovers her next subject in a book club on Guernsey — a club born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi after its members are discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island.

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About the Author

Mary Ann Shaffer worked as an editor, a librarian, and in bookshops. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society was her first novel.

Her niece, Annie Barrows, is the author of the children's series Ivy and Bean, as well as The Magic Half.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 18 comments:

Carol CC, September 30, 2011 (view all comments by Carol CC)
This was a pleasant surprise. The story was by turns sweet and sad and heart-rending and funny. There were times I laughed out loud and times I was moved to tears. The characters are wonderfully drawn -- all of them people you wanted to have as friends or neighbors or both. Guernsey was painted as a charming place that I've added to my travel wish list. The all-letters format made me yearn for the "good old days" when cards and letters were the only way to go. This one's a keeper.
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Marilyn Grendele, September 10, 2011 (view all comments by Marilyn Grendele)
Curl up with The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and be prepared for a wonderful trip back in time. Feel the bravery, fear and humor on Guernsey Island during WW11.
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Megan Zeeck, September 1, 2011 (view all comments by Megan Zeeck)
This book was incredible! A must-have for any book collection. I was very pleased to have this book recommended to me by a work colleague. Extremely relevant in today's society, which has come full circle with the era in which this books takes place. Written completely in letters, the characters feel safe to disclose so more information that one possible could in the via verbal communication (1940's "texting if you will). This book will be a favorite of all ages.
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View all 18 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780385340991
Author:
Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
Publisher:
Dial Press
Author:
Barrows, Annie
Author:
Barrows, Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie
Author:
Shaffer, Mary Ann
Author:
Barrows, Annie Fiery
Author:
Shaffer, Mary Ann Fiery
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
History
Subject:
Women Authors
Subject:
England
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Historical
Subject:
fiction;wwii;historical fiction;england;guernsey;letters;epistolary;channel islands;romance;german occupation;historical;friendship;war;novel;history;literature;occupation;books about books;love;british;epistolary novel;london;writers;1940s;correspondence
Copyright:
Publication Date:
July 2008
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8.55 x 5.7 x 1 in 0.85 lb

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$3.95 In Stock
Product details 288 pages Random House - English 9780385340991 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Perfect for book groups, a charming series of letters make up this short novel set in post-WWII Europe. The correspondents, drawn together by their love of books and affection for each other, collectively tell a moving tale of endurance and friendship in the shadow of war.

"Review" by , "Reminiscent of Helene Hanff's 84 Charing Cross Road, this is a warm, funny, tender, and thoroughly entertaining celebration of the power of the written word. This marvelous debut novel, sure to have book club appeal, is highly recommended."
"Review" by , "I can't remember the last time I discovered a novel as smart and delightful as this one, a world so vivid that I kept forgetting this was a work of fiction populated with characters so utterly wonderful that I kept forgetting they weren't my actual friends and neighbors. Treat yourself to this book, please — I can't recommend it highly enough."
"Review" by , "Though it deals with a dark period in history, this first novel is an essentially sunny work....The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is a sweet, sentimental paean to books and those who love them."
"Review" by , "Elizabeth and Juliet are appealingly reminiscent of game but gutsy '40s movie heroines. The engrossing subject matter and lively writing make this a sure winner, perhaps fodder for a TV series."
"Review" by , "Written in the form of letters (a lost art), this novel by an aunt-and-niece team has loads of charm, especially as long as Juliet is still in London corresponding with the society members."
"Synopsis" by , London, 1946: writer Juliet Ashton receives a letter from a stranger, a founding member of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. And so begins a remarkable tale of Guernsey during the German occupation, and about a society as extraordinary as its name.
"Synopsis" by , As London is emerging from the shadow of World War II, writer Juliet Ashton discovers her next subject in a book club on Guernsey — a club born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi after its members are discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island.
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