84 Charing Cross Road

This is the first time I’ve ever taken Amazon.com up on one of its book recommendations. Learning I’d read Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (by spying on me really), the good folks at Amazon tried to hook me up with 84 Charing Cross Road. I obligingly fell for their gimmick, and was totally charmed by the initially perfunctory letter exchange between Helene Hanff and Frank Doel,  which evolves gradually like a gracefully aged wine into a full-bodied friendship. Just as naturally, Hanff finds herself corresponding not only with Frank, but with his family and other Marks & Co. employees.…

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Book Review: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

I’m a history fanatic, but if a book’s about war, it generally needs to be pre-20th century for me. A War of the Roses story, and I am glued, telling myself it was long ago and far away, even somehow romanticizing it. A story about WWI or any war thereafter – well, I am simply uninterested in a reminder we’ve evolved no further than Cro-Magnon man regarding warfare. So, when I got The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (“GLPPPS”) as a gift, it sat unread for a year — until I read 84 Charing Cross Road, another story…

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