The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society - WikipediaI always keep my ears open for new costume dramas coming out and add them to my To Watch list. It was lovely. It was sweet. It was funny, devastating and full of heart. It desperately made me wish I could write a book even half as good.
Bright and dark
T he zany title of Mary Ann Shaffer's first and, alas, last novel derives from an invented book club on the island of Guernsey in the second world war. The club is invented by the resourceful character Elizabeth McKenna, who, bumping into a German patrol after curfew with a crowd of revellers, makes the society up on the spot. In reality, the tipsy party had been consuming forbidden roast pig at Amelia Maugery's. This is less a historical novel than a bibliophilic jeu d'esprit by an ex-librarian and bookseller, posthumously published, and completed by her niece Annie Barrows. A novel in letters about books, bibliophiles, publishers, authors and readers, it centres on an imagined post-occupation Guernsey. Juliet Ashton, the whimsical, intuitive heroine, is an up-and-coming writer.
Mary Ann Shaffer's first and only novel opens in London in , and could scarcely, it seems, be more English. Yet its author was an American.
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January London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject., Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live.
December 12, Reading them, writing them, selling them, binding them — we are not picky. The debut novel by the late Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows is written as a series of letters that tells the history of a small group of Channel Islanders during five years of Nazi occupation. Treated as an alibi, the society actually began life as a pig roast. Islanders were no longer allowed meat, but a local woman managed to hide a pig from the German soldiers and invited her neighbors to share. Caught out after curfew, one of the conspirators claimed that they were a book club who had been so engrossed that they lost track of time.
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When Guernsey farmer Dawsey Adams finds Juliet's name in a used book and invites articulate—and not-so-articulate—neighbors to write Juliet with their stories, the book's epistolary circle widens, putting Juliet back in the path of war stories. The occasionally contrived letters jump from incident to incident—including the formation of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society while Guernsey was under German occupation—and person to person in a manner that feels disjointed. But Juliet's quips are so clever, the Guernsey inhabitants so enchanting and the small acts of heroism so vivid and moving that one forgives the authors Shaffer died earlier this year for not being able to settle on a single person or plot. Juliet finds in the letters not just inspiration for her next work, but also for her life—as will readers. View Full Version of PW.