I gave this book to my mom for Christmas after seeing it on a list of recommended books. Then my mom passed the book onto me with the highest praises. My mom loves BBC shows about historical events and small towns, and this book has so much of what she loves about those shows.
I, too, absolutely loved the variety of characters, the WWII history, and epistolary narrative style. I’m incredibly amazed by all the different subplots and characters and how each of them came through in their letters. It was hard to dislike any character, which also speaks highly of how the author constructed them. There were some truly gut-wrenching moments regarding what happened to a character during the war, and the emotional impact of it also speaks highly of the writing and plot in this book.
However, the novel did fall flat in a couple of areas for me. The main character, Juliet’s romance felt very tired, so I was glad that it didn’t completely overshadow the plot. Unfortunately, the romance did run over Juliet’s career aspirations at the end, so that the ending felt a little rushed and incomplete. My mom agreed that the ending felt a little too rushed.
Still, I think this is a great pleasure read for any die-hard BBC drama fan. There’s a lot to fall in love with in this book.
Author(s): Mary Ann Shaffer
Overall Rating: 4/5
Format Accessed: Paperback
Imprint: The Dial Press
Publisher: Penguin Random House