Sunday, August 25, 2013

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is one of a kind. You can just tell by the title, can't you? ;) I first read this book in seventh grade, when my Power of the Pen instructor recommended it to me. She knew in general what kind of books I was interested in, so I gave it a try. I LOVED it!

GLPPPS (as I will be abbreviating it) is based in post-WWII England. It is an epistolary novel, meaning it is made up of letters. Dawsey Adams, a farmer from the island of Guernsey, finds Juliet Ashton's name on some of his new books. He really likes the books, and decides to send her a letter. Little does he know what he's starting!


This letter starts an ongoing correspondence between aspiring authoress Juliet and the quirky citizens of Guernsey. Juliet would like to write a story on reading and the impact it can have on people, as GLPPPS helped the people of Guernsey during the Nazi invasion.

This book has light, charming correspondence, and it also has some deep aspects, such as the Nazi occupation in the island of Guernsey. They were the only part of England to be occupied.

Juliet is such a kindred spirit. She loves reading about as much as I do (which is considerably, you know!).
She is charming, funny, and she is strong. She finds humor and hope in everything. Not just anyone could write a humorist column during the war. She is not shallow, though. She can be serious and she has a wonderful mother-instinct. (I'm thinking of Kit here.)

Dawsey Adams may seem shy and unimportant at first, but this is definitely not the case. How many people could write to a virtual stranger just because they liked the book they used to own? He is what I would describe as a "gentleman farmer." He is reliable, loyal, kind, and smart. He is the glue that keeps GLPPPS together. He is rather quiet, but he is a wonderful friend and would do anything for those he cared about. It's a surprise to me anyone would find him uninteresting.

The island of Guernsey
As Juliet so accurately says, "I have fallen in love with two men: Eben Ramsey and Dawsey Adams. Clovis Fossey and John Booker, I like. I want Amelia Maugery to adopt me; and me, I want to adopt Isola Pribby." Elizabeth McKenna deserves a shout out too, as she is fabulous! *SPOILER* I was so upset that she was taken to a Nazi concentration camp. I had hoped, along with the people of Guernsey, that she would be found. The news of her death was quite a blow. *END OF SPOILER* These characters live. I laughed at their funny shenanigans and stories, I cry and rage at the Germans and their treatment of their captives, and I smile like an idiot at the end of the story.

This story is a fairly short and easy read, but definitely worth the while. It has so much character and emotion in it. I would recommend it, as I think it's fairly one-of-a-kind. And, there are rumors of a movie adaptation being made, and so of course you must read the book first! Fingers crossed that the director, screenwriters, and all the people working on the film can catch the essence of the story!

Guernsey's Nazi invasion


  1. This is one of my ten favorite books of all time! I love it so much -- those characters are like my dear (fictional, I realize) friends.

    1. I'm so glad you love it too! It is one of my family's favorites... and fictional friends are some of the best kind ;)

  2. BTW, I'm giving you the Elegant Blogger Award. Read this for more details.