What I Read This Week – 5/2/13 – 5/8/13

8 May

Two British-ish books about ordinary people living in extraordinary times. Two meh reactions.
guernsey literary

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

People love this book. It has been recommended to me a few times, and for good reason. I love the UK. I love history. I love books. I love potatoes. How could this not be a homerun?

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society is a book told through letters, from the people of Guernsey who lived through the German occupation to an author who becomes enthralled in their story. There is some really great material to work with here, as the Channel Island occupation is a very odd story, with a lot of ambiguity. Unfortunately, those opportunities were squandered in order to tell a predictable love story instead. All the characters are sweet and boring. The bad guys are the most cardboard characters out there.

In the end, I found the book pleasant, but not mind-blowing.

jesse lamb

Another book that could’ve been great, but fell short!

Jessie lives in the UK in the not-so-distant future, where a horrible hybrid of Mad Cow Disease and HIV is attacking pregnant women, killing them before they can give birth. As the human race panics, Jessie tries to navigate through the normal adolescent dramas, while trying to figure out how to make a difference in this new world.

This book has a brilliant concept, and the writing is smart, but the plot just seems to lie there. There isn’t the necessary spark to take this book from good to amazing.

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