The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

Guernsey is a tiny island in the English Channel. It was occupied by Germans during WW2, and the people of Guernsey suffered deprivations of course. So it was the Nazis’ fault they had to form a Literary AND Potato Peel Pie Society one night, spur of the moment. For the rest of the war, five friends read books and then met to discuss them, whilst eating awful potato peel pie. With only a limited amount of books, Dawsey (Michiel Huisman) writes to a stranger in London, a name he finds randomly in one of the second-hand books he reads, to ask for the name of a bookstore from which he may order more. Juliet (Lily James), a writer and book lover herself, is quite taken by the request, and she writes back, including several titles for he and the society to enjoy. They MV5BNDE5MjM3MTg4OF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwMjQ5MzE5NDM@._V1_SX1500_CR0,0,1500,999_AL_keep up a correspondence for quite some time, and when the war ends, she heads to Guernsey to meet the characters from the letters in the hopes that she may write to them.

Juliet is welcomed warmly but meets with resistance when she broaches the topic of writing. The society wish to remain anonymous. They’ve suffered more than just deprivation during the war. One of the society is missing, and the rest are secretive, protective.

I loved this book. The movie feels a little less special, not even living up to its quirky title. It’s predictable and conventionally told, but gosh darn is it pretty to look at. It’s a satisfying period romance with a great ensemble cast. It’s too bad the script plays it safe, but it’s still a sweet little movie. It’s not breaking any new ground, and you’ll have to make due with London standing in for Guernsey. But Lily James is her sparkling, charming self, so if the movie is hard to love, it’s easy to like.


11 thoughts on “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

  1. allthingsthriller

    I’ve heard great things about the book. Authors can get away with titles like that. Readers are more open minded and forgiving about such things. But, there’s no way an American audience is going to go to a movie with a title like that. Obviously the producers didn’t care about such things. I hope they made money without us. (I know you’re Canadian Jay. Ha!)


  2. bookbeachbunny

    Agreed about it being less special. But Lily James is definitely one of my favorites these days. She just so darned talented and likable. I would love to see her in a play one of these days!


  3. Isabella

    The book was fantastic! To all commenters/readers, definitely read it if you at all enjoyed the movie (or even if you didn’t). It’s spectacular, though I do have some misgivings with the endings.


  4. Pingback: Day 40 – Fraggle's Other Place

  5. Robert Jantzen

    Hmm, somehow Netflix waited a few years to get our attention (2021), but we are Downton Abbey fans and spotted a few other colleagues of our darling Lily James in the cast as we eagerly awaited her charms. We had not read the book so had no expectations, and yes, the title is a bit off-putting, but we have a low threshhold for pleasure apparently and Lily delivered for us. At the end of the movie I rushed to see if AWM had reviewed it, so here I am, glad you relented and gave it an almost thumbs up.

    Liked by 1 person


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