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The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society: A Novel

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Annie Barrows, Mary Ann Shaffer

Narrated By: Various Artists

Publisher: Random House (Audio)

Date: July 2008

Duration: 8 hours 7 minutes


#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NOW A NETFLIX FILM • A remarkable tale of the island of Guernsey during the German Occupation, and of a society as extraordinary as its name.

“Treat yourself to this book, please—I can’t recommend it highly enough.”—Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love

“I wonder how the book got to Guernsey? Perhaps there is some sort of secret homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers.” January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she’s never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb. . . .

As Juliet and her new correspondent exchange letters, Juliet is drawn into the world of this man and his friends—and what a wonderfully eccentric world it is. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society—born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi when its members were discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island—boasts a charming, funny, deeply human cast of characters, from pig farmers to phrenologists, literature lovers all.

Juliet begins a remarkable correspondence with the society’s members, learning about their island, their taste in books, and the impact the recent German occupation has had on their lives. Captivated by their stories, she sets sail for Guernsey, and what she finds will change her forever.

Written with warmth and humor as a series of letters, this novel is a celebration of the written word in all its guises and of finding connection in the most surprising ways.

Praise for The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society

“A jewel . . . Poignant and keenly observed, Guernsey is a small masterpiece about love, war, and the immeasurable sustenance to be found in good books and good friends.”—People

“A book-lover’s delight, an implicit and sometimes explicit paean to all things literary.”—Chicago Sun-Times

“A sparkling epistolary novel radiating wit, lightly worn erudition and written with great assurance and aplomb.”—The Sunday Times (London)

“Cooked perfectly à point: subtle and elegant in flavour, yet emotionally satisfying to the finish.”—The Times (London)


  • E R

    I love this book! Love all the characters, the narrators who bring them to life, and the perspective each one gives to the overall story. Even my husband liked it when we listened to it on a road trip, and he's not a fan of fiction in general. The story also shines a light on the occupation of the Channel Islands during WWII, which isn't something we often read about these days. I rarely listen to or read a book more than once, and I've listened to this twice.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Lin F.

    The story is exciting and uplifting, and of historical interest. The narrators do a great job, and the fact that there are several different voices makes it easy to follow and keep track of who's who. My only reason to deduct from the audiobook's score is the fact that there are glitches in a few places, where words and sentences are missing.

  • Danielle O.

    Great book, loved this so much more than the movie.

  • Naomi R.

    A story well told through letters, with a tender respect for the habitants of Guernsey Island as they in turn reflect and tell of their stories of times during and after WW2. The humour develops as do the characters with such delight. All leading to a satisfying ending that I was sad to finally realize. The narration, like the story was fabulous.

  • Nancy K.

    I love this book! It is a reread for me and I will probably listen to it again! The characters are delightful! The story ,told through the exchange of letters, adds charm to the story. It tells the history of the occupation of the Channel Islands during WWll. The narration is wonderful and brings each character to life!

  • Cynthia C

    This book had to be done in the format of letters, to prove its point that the printed word has the power alter our existence, even in the worst circumstances. Excellent narration!

  • Patricia D

    Funny and wonderful!

  • Sharon Wagner

    I never knew that Guernsey was occupied by the Germans in WWII. Through the stories shared by the islanders, I felt a connection to the human experience of those war years. The letter format also endeared the characters to me in a heartwarming way. The readers of this book were excellent. One of the most enjoyable listening experiences I've had for a long time.

  • Anonymous

    A different view of WWII from the British outer islands. How the English banded together under the Nazi occupation in a lighthearted way. I loved the story.

  • Janice

    Historical fiction not your thing? This book, one of my all time favorites, could change your mind! I have read the print book more than once and enjoyed the audio version also. The author's characters are alive and well developed. The historical setting during WWII is accurate. My deep regret is that the author died and won't be writing anymore wonderful books. She made the island and its inhabitants so real that I would love to visit there. Today the island is much more developed and modern I will be looking for and hoping to meet people who knew someone who lived there during the war.

Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society: A Novel

by Annie Barrows, Mary Ann Shaffer

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Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society: A Novel, Annie Barrows, Mary Ann Shaffer