The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society is such a long title that I will abbreviate it as TGLPPPS from hence forth! With that out of the way, I really wanted to like this book. I read it for a book club that I’m in and I confess that, were it not for the book club, I wouldn’t have finished reading it!
I’ve read many other books that were compilations of letters and enjoyed that literary device. Not the case with TGLPPPS. I found the syntax extremely choppy and disjointed — almost stream of consciousness –and there were many details included that felt like “padding” — for want of a better word. There were phrases that were likely not used during that time period, such as “I kid you not” that made the text seem even more manufactured.
[Spoiler Alert] The characters are almost charactures. Juliet is the career woman who leaves it all for the pig farmer, marrying him immediately after their excruciatingly cliched, Harlequin Romance-ish love is *finally* mutually confessed. The orphan is, of course, going to be adopted by the couple and live happily ever after. There’s the crazy lady, Isola. The über judgmental Christian lady. The spinster twin sisters. It’s all there.
I liked learning some facts about the lives of the people of the Channel Islands during WWII, but there really wasn’t that much detail that wouldn’t have been surmised by anyone with a basic knowledge of Europe during the war.
I was really disappointed. I really wanted to like this book with the eccentric and ridiculously long title, but I really did not. One of the quotes from the book seems ironic to me: “reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.” I guess I’ve read too many good books.