Matching Wartime Messages

Book Review of "Last Christmas in Paris" by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb When the "war to end all wars" began in the summer of 1914, British soldiers were sure that they'd all be home for Christmas. Unfortunately, they didn't know that many of them wouldn't make it to see that Christmas, or the next … Continue reading Matching Wartime Messages

Two World Wars, Two Women, Thousands of Letters

Book review of Letters from Skye by Jessica Brockmole. In March 1912, David Graham is a University student in Urbana, Illinois. He's just read a book of poetry by Elspeth Dunn, who lives on Scotland's Isle of Skye. Impressed, he decides to write to her, and thereby begins a correspondence that will change both their … Continue reading Two World Wars, Two Women, Thousands of Letters

Burning and Building Bridges

Book Review of "Letters from the Fire" by Alma Alexandra Hromic and R. A. Deckert During the NATO bombing of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, also known as "Operation Allied Force," two people "meet" on an internet newsgroup – one is a woman in Yugoslavia, watching the bombing of her homeland by NATO forces. The … Continue reading Burning and Building Bridges

Everything old is new again!

Book Review of "84, Charing Cross Road" by Helene Hanff. It is a rare instance when non-fiction reads like fiction, and Helene Hanff’s book is exactly one of those exceptions. Long before the age of the Internet and on-line book sellers like Amazon, New York writer Hanff saw an ad in the Saturday Review of … Continue reading Everything old is new again!

An Occupied Island and Unusual Occupations

Book Review of "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows. When the Nazis occupied the island of Guernsey during WW2, some of the inhabitants tried to carry on as usual. Others felt they should try to do something in defiance of their captors. When their gatherings become … Continue reading An Occupied Island and Unusual Occupations