It is about a writer, Juliet Ashton, set in London shortly after World War II who happens to get a letter from a stranger, Dawsey, who resides on Guernsey Island in the English Channel. He had received a book that once belonged to her. Her address was written inside, so he sent her a letter wondering if she could find him more books by that author. And from that letter on we learn of this literary society several of the Guernsey Islanders formed during the German Occupation during the war.
The entire book is simply a series of letters written either by the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society members or Juliet corresponding with her editor and two friends. It's a very fast paced book, with a little bit of everything. It's happy. It's sad (tears sad). It's funny. And it even has a bit of romance. It leaves you with an overall feeling of warmth. That group of people, however unintentional, came together during a harsh and tragic time. And it was books that brought them together, and a roast pig! It gave them a bit of peace during the horrible Occupation, which lasted five years.
While I was reading yesterday I had a thought, "Wouldn't it be cool to pass this book around?" It is definitely a book for a book lover to read. It's based around an author and a literary society, so there are several mentions of literary classics, such as the Bronte Sisters, Jane Austen, Chauncey, and several others. But it wasn't until I read the Afterward that really made me want to pass this book around.
"...Its members are spread all over the world, but they are joined by their love of books, of talking about books, and of their fellow readers. We are transformed-magically-into the literary society each time we pass a book along, each time we ask a question about it, each time we say, "If you liked that, I bet you'd like this." Whenever we are willing to be delighted and share our delight, as Mary Ann did, we are part of the ongoing story of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society."
I thought after reading that, that if there was any book that should be passed around it's this one! I thought how neat would it be to go from one reader to the next, each signing their name, date, and locale, then passing it on to the next, until eventually it made it back to me.
So I ask all of you, are you interested in being a member of my Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society? If you are either leave a comment here or send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. I figure I could set up a mailing route with whoever is interested and see what happens! I really hope some of you are interested. It is a really great book.