Spoiler Warning

Book reviews and discussions may contain spoilers. Read at your own risk!

Sunday, January 31, 2010


Dear SRBC;

This is going to be a little disjointed....Michelle is in a drug-induced fog and Sam is half asleep.

We totally fell in love with this book when we read it. We were REALLY excited when you voted for it, because, even though we thought the teenage spy book was fun, this book was one of the best we've read in ages.

We find ourselves envious of the kind of relationships that people in small towns have, especially in a situations where they've endured some kind of adversity together. It's not the same as working in the next cubicle with someone. We love all the quirky personalities, their lack of pretense. They are who they are. Kind of reminds us of our ward here in Prunetucky. It made us really want to visit Guernsey, it seems such a lovely place with lovely people. And reading this book gave us more of a feeling of what this period in time was really like, much more so than a history book.

But, before we even knew the characters we found a great sense of nostalgia over that type of letter writing. The authors did a good job of making the letters sound like they were written in that era. As someone who has actually written actual letters...being of a pre-internet age....and received actual letters, we have to say that the world of email, IM and facebook is not the same. Something about sitting down to actually handwrite a letter, and to think about how to convey what one wants to say while making it entertaining and interesting. Now we just dash off emails and instant messages and don't edit ourselves at all...or very little, anyway.

It was interesting also to show the German point of view of being stuck on this island with people that hated them being there and kind of being in the same boat; not enough food, boredom, etc. We loved the story of moving the dead pig around, counting it as dead several times so that they could hide a few more live pigs. And twist of the Oscar Wilde letters. And especially the stories of Elizabeth's spirit and bravery.

The authors really portrayed the impact the books had on people's lives. It made us want to go look up all the books they mentioned and read them, too. And she was right, reading good books really ruins you for the bad ones.

One surprising thing we liked about the book was that it was unpredictable. We never really knew how it was going to end....(other than Juliet was NOT going to end up with Mark..he reminded Michelle of this guy her sister used to date that we called Mr Hairspray. Too perfect.) We thought it was kind of unpredictable in the way that real life is unpredictable. Kind of like Sam and Michelle can't believe that nearly twenty years after they met, they'd be married to each other and living by a beach. Or that Markie guy who was attached at the hip to Cherie in high school would be her brother in law. Life is weird.

OK, that's enough of our ramblings for now. We're glad to see that so many of you liked it as much as we did. We love our little literary society, we've known most of you since diapers...but we've met some new friends, too. We're still irritated over the outcome of the SF trip...we really wanted to see you guys. Maybe next time you should come visit a small country town similar to Guernsey, but closer...like Prunetucky!


Shel, Sam and the Megster

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