A witty journalist has entertained a World War II depressed nation with her humorous column in the national newspaper. Post-war, she’s tired of entertaining and seeks inspiration for a more meaningful composition.

She stumbles across ‘The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society’, an unconventional book club which was hastily invented by several inhabitants of the German-occupied island to excuse a breach of curfew.

The neighbours had hardly known one another, but now their regular meetings lead them to discover a love for books and the discussions they can inspire, expanding their personal interests and deepening friendships.

The book is written as a collection of letters, and the author’s skill uses them to paint a perfect picture. Perhaps the appeal is in the small, idyllic town setting, or in the nostalgic beauty of the art of letter writing. Or perhaps it’s the refreshing presentation of relationships where flashy glamour is contrasted with the simple beauty of genuine understanding.

There are a few references which would make the novel unsuitable for a younger audience, but mature readers 16+ will find it mostly a delight.

It’s only a shame that the author’s recent passing denies us the joy of future stories which were hinted at in this narrative.

Clare Cannon lives in Sydney where she is the manager of Portico Books and editor of the soon to be launched www.GoodReadingGuide.com 

Clare Cannon

Clare Cannon lives in Sydney where she is editor of The Good Reading Guide and manager of Portico Books,...