Wednesday, 2 May 2012

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

I rarely buy books these days.  It does not seem terribly wise to line my shelves at aged (nearly 68) when I can borrow much of what I want to read from Sarasota County’s excellent library system.

But from time to time I purchase a book which I can then pass on.

One such recent purchase was “La’s Orchestra Saves the World”, a charming novel by Alexander McCall Smith.  I heard a radio interview with the author and was so taken with the way he spoke that I bought the book.  I loved every page.

But rather than adding it to my book-shelves I signed and dated the fly page of the book, then mailed the book to a dear friend in Massachusetts suggesting that she too might read and enjoy it, and then sign her name and “pass it on”.

I also bought David McCullough’s masterful “The Greater Journey”, a mostly fabulous tale of those Americans who travelled to France and lived there in the 19th Century.  It was worth a read, especially and particularly because of McCullough’s accounts of the incredible integrity of Elihu Washburne, America’s minister to France between 1869 and 1877.

I have loaned this book to my pal Ben, and when he is done with it.  I will e-mail it to my Franco-American friend Lizzie who lives in Bordeaux.

Some months ago I heard a radio interview (maybe on the Diane Rehm programme) with Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows the authors of “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society”. (Dials Press 2008)

That interview stuck itself into my mind.  So much so that could not resist buying a copy of the book last week.

To be truthful it was on sale at our local Fruitville Library by the volunteer “Friends of the Library” at the priceless sum of $1.

It is an exquisite novel – filled with references to the good, the bad, the indifferent and the ugly in the Channel Island of Guernsey during the N-zi Occupation and the immediate years thereafter.

I enjoyed this book so much that I want to pass it on.

 It’s a  “first come first served” to anyone who sends an e-mail to me at  

I will mail my copy of “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” to that person, in  the hope that she/he will pass it on.

1 comment:

  1. Can I just have the recipe?