Did you ever see that episode of Friends, where Monica moves into Chandlers apartment and nearly kill's herself trying to make it scrumptiously hospitable, then invites the gang over to enjoy her efforts, while she curl's into a ball and fall's fast asleep? That's me today... I'm Monica... eager for you to have a lovely time in the all new, singing and dancing version of BrocanteHome, but a wee bit too tired to enjoy it myself... But please don't feel guilty. While it has been a major task re-creating BrocanteHome on Blogger (and heaven knows there are still tasks to be completed and links to be made), it isn't that which has me aching to pull a blanket over my head and fall asleep... ah mais non... rather it is a book that for the first time in many a year, I stayed up last night to read from cover to cover... There are books in this world I get all uppity about and refuse to read on point of principle, because, and do Darlings, do forgive my outrageous snobbishness, they have been commandeered by those who have never read a book in their entire lives! The Da Vinci Code is a case in point. The Harry Potter series another. A Short History of Tractors In the Ukraine a third. And if I'm honest when I saw every other women on the train reading The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society, this wonderful book nearly fell victim to my rather ridiculous methods of literary de-selection.
But oh how grateful I am that it didn't, because I really cannot recommend it highly enough. I was lost in it. Utterly lost in the lives of characters whose astonishing personality's and experiences crept under my skin within a few short paragraphs of a series of beautifully written letters, that are part love story, part history book, and ultimately all heart.
Describing in terms that pull no punches, the occupation of Guernsey during the second world war, this isn't a frilly domestic book of the kind I usually recommend, but neither is it drowning in so much historical detail to make the lovely gentle plot superflous. Rather it does a wonderful job of showing us facts while letting us lose ourselves in lovely fiction and at the end leaves us quietly wanting more and indeed all the better for what will be for you too, I am quite sure, something of an experience.
Beg, borrow or steal it: I cannot offer you a more enjoyable literary excursion than this...