I was lucky enough to snag another Early Reviewers book from LibaryThing recently- this time around it was Henrietta Sees It Through by Joyce Dennys. Like Love's Shadow by Ada Leverson (I reviewed that around this time last year), this is a rerelease of an older book, and I have to say that I enjoyed this one a lot more than Love's Shadow.
Here's the blurb from LibraryThing:
World War II is now in its third year and although nothing can dent the unwavering patriotism of Henrietta and her friends, everyone in the Devonshire village has their anxious moments. Henrietta takes up weeding and plays the triangle in the local orchestra to take her mind off things; the indomitable Lady B, now in her late seventies, partakes in endless fund-raising events to distract herself from thoughts of life without elastic; and Faith, the village flirt, finds herself in the charming company of American GIs. With the war nearing its end, hope seems to lie just around the corner, and as this spirited community muddles through, Lady B vows to make their friendships outlast the hardship that brought them together.
I wasn't sure if I'd like this book or not, it not fitting in my usual genres of fantasy and old Brit lit (the older, the better; is it weird that I think of a book taking place in the 1940s as "modern"?), and the only thing close to WWII-related that I've read being The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, but that blurb caught my eye enough that I hit the "request book" button next to it. And I'm glad I did!
This book was a fun, quick read. I generally look for well-written characterization in a story, and while there wasn't a lot of character detail, this being written in letter form, the characters were amusing and I couldn't help liking the narrator and her elderly friend. I loved the sarcastic wit that ran through the entire book, I loved the usually-odd daily events that the narrator talked about (I think the bit about the dog show was my favorite), and... well, I just really loved this book. I guess that's to be expected since I do love me some British humor.
Although I will admit that some of the terms had me baffled, mostly with the abbreviations. I'm usually good at understanding Brit-speak (since I read a lot of things by British authors), but I think the fact that I know very little about WWII didn't help me there. And why did the narrator call her daughter "the Linnet", anyway? She didn't address her son with a "the". It took me an embarrassingly many pages to realize that "the Linnet" was referring to a person. Whoops?
I'm definitely going to give this five starts out of five. There's another book called Henrietta's War that takes place before this one, and since it's not available in my library system (where I usually get books from), I just ordered that off of Amazon. It's less than $10 with shipping (normally $14 just for the book), so I think this is a good time to splurge on a new book for once. ;)