The Postmistress

The Postmistress
By: Sarah Blake

Published: 2010

# of pages: 336

Official description: In 1940, Iris James is the postmistress in coastal Franklin, Massachusetts. Iris knows more about the townspeople than she will ever say, and believes her job is to deliver secrets. Yet one day she does the unthinkable: slips a letter into her pocket, reads it, and doesn't deliver it. 
Meanwhile, Frankie Bard broadcasts from overseas with Edward R. Murrow. Her dispatches beg listeners to pay heed as the Nazis bomb London nightly. Most of the townspeople of Franklin think the war can't touch them. But both Iris and Frankie know better...
The Postmistress is a tale of two worlds-one shattered by violence, the other willfully naïve-and of two women whose job is to deliver the news, yet who find themselves unable to do so. Through their eyes, and the eyes of everyday people caught in history's tide, it examines how stories are told, and how the fact of war is borne even through everyday life.

My opinion:  Meh.  The separate characters' stories (Iris, Harry, Emma, Will, Frankie) didn't mesh well at all.  I read review that described it as sort of meandering and then petering out.  That's exactly how this novel is.  I understand that one of the points of the book is not knowing what happens outside the story...what happens on the edges.  Of course, the author claims she is writing this book to describe the edges of WWII, but I wondered if that's one reason she tapers off at the end without fully finishing or allowing the reader to understand all of the characters' thoughts.

I also don't really understand the significance of "The Postmistress."  And the intro really sucks, it makes it sound like the book is about something it's not about at all.

Why I gave this book 3/5 stars:  Not very well written, but it could be worse.  The middle part with the scenes of Jewish refugees traveling is very interesting.  The characters are hard to relate to and the entire book seemed pointless.

Other reviews:
S. Krishna's Books
Bookfoolery and Babble

Have you reviewed this? Let me know and I'd be happy to post yours as well.

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