Book Review: The Postmistress

PostMistressby Sarah Blake

Penguin Group

February 9, 2010

My Rating: C

This is a World War II era story which centers around some of the people of a coastal New England town. The story is told primarily from the viewpoint of three of the young women in the town.

  • Frankie Bard: Prior to the entry of the United States in the war, we meet Frankie Bard who is working as a reporter for Edward R. Murrow in London. It is the time of the nightly bombings and Frankie relates the stories of individual Londoners who spend their nights underground as the bombs devastate their town. Frankie is also able to travel to the continent where she witnesses what the Nazis are doing to the Jews. Frankie’s goal is to share these stories with people back home. The censors restrict her from full disclosure.
  • Emma Fitch is newly married and new in town. Her husband, Will, is the young doctor in town. Emma’s story is of her adjustment to marriage and her new home, but also with her husband’s wishes. Will has a strong desire to go to England and help with the wounded. Emma is convinced that, if he goes, he will never come back. She doesn’t want to tell him she is pregnant.
  • Iris James is the Postmistress of the town. She’s neat and organized and believes in following the rules and regulations.

I had a different reaction to each of the three characters. I found Frankie’s story very interesting and I was totally engaged in the story when she was “on stage.” I felt great sympathy for Emma and the fact that she was faced with being alone again soon after marrying Will. Iris, I didn’t get at all. The story jumped back and forth between characters so much that I was confused. I had to bribe myself to keep on reading.

I read this book as part of Barnes and Noble’s First Look Book Club. Other members of the Book Club loved the book, others hated it. I found myself right in the middle. I can recommend this only to those of you interested in more World War II stories.

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13 Responses to Book Review: The Postmistress

  1. I kept reading but would agree it’s probably a “skip this one.”

  2. Bumbles says:

    Sounds interesting to me – I enjoy books where multiple characters’ stories are woven into each other. And I enjoy stories set around wars that show a variety of perspectives.

    By the way – how exactly do you bribe yourself to keep reading? :0)

  3. Beth F says:

    I think I’ll pass on this one. I’m not sure I would stick with it.

  4. Staci says:

    I do like WWII stories but they’re not my favorite reads in the world. I have an ARC of this one….will have to dig it out and give it a try!!

  5. Jo-Jo says:

    I’ve had this book in my sites for quite some time…so I will probably read it. Thanks for the review.

  6. Stacy says:

    I have read many reviews of this one and while I’ve been tempted to add it to my list I haven’t yet. And now you’ve sealed the deal for me. Thanks 🙂

  7. Pingback: Book Review: The Postmistress « ReviewsbyLola's Blog

  8. Betty says:

    I loved this book, and the stories of each individual. I must admit I loved Edward R. Murrow on the news in the 50’s when I was a kid, so I liked the historical references to events BEFORE the US was in the war.

  9. Pingback: The Postmistress, by Sarah Blake – Book Review | Linus's Blanket

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