Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My latest book

I just finished reading The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

Apparently I've been living under a rock because I hadn't heard anything about it until a friend recommended it. I was a bit put off by the title. I shy away from titles like this because to me it feels staged, as though the publishers are trying too hard. "Hey read our book! Look how quirky it is! It's quirky, isn't it? Everyone loves quirky!"

But despite my misgivings, I will always give books a chance regardless of their titles, especially if they come with a strong recommendation.

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It's written entirely in letters (epistles, not letters versus numbers or binary code), which is probably difficult to pull off successfully, but this book succeeds. I loved the characters as well as the story, and the book made me want to go to Guernsey, which is an island in the English channel. (I did not know this before. That fact makes me feel uneducated.)

The woman who wrote it, Mary Ann Shaffer, became ill and couldn't finish the book. I think it was her niece who took over the writing so it could be published, and Mary Ann passed away shortly after. The death of the author doesn't necessarily make a book good, but it did make this book feel special, knowing that a woman who had always wanted to write a book finally did before she died.

So now I'm recommending this book highly, and I'm joining the ranks of all the other people who recommend it.

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