Dear Mrs. Bird

Dear Mrs. Bird

A Novel

Book - 2018
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London, 1940. Emmeline Lake is doing her bit for the war effort, volunteering as a telephone operator with the Auxiliary Fire Services. When Emmy sees an advertisement for a job at the London Evening Chronicle, her dreams of becoming a Lady War Correspondent suddenly seem achievable. But the job turns out to be working as a typist for the fierce and renowned advice columnist, Henrietta Bird. Emmy is disappointed, but gamely bucks up and buckles down. Mrs. Bird is very clear: letters containing any unpleasantness must go straight in the bin. But when Emmy reads poignant notes from women who may have gone too far with the wrong men, or who can't bear to let their children be evacuated, she is unable to resist responding. As the German planes make their nightly raids, and London picks up the smoldering pieces each morning, Emmy secretly begins to write back to the readers who have poured out their troubles.
Publisher: New York :, Scribner,, 2018.
ISBN: 9781501170065
Characteristics: 281 pages ; 24 cm


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Nov 19, 2018

I enjoyed this book a lot for it's fun writing style and women's perspective WW2 (and the Blitz) that we don't often hear about! I panicked a bit when I got to the last chapter and there were so many loose ends to be wrapped up and so few pages left - it's like the author got a bit tired of the story and decided to wrap things up quickly, or possibly left things open ended enough that there would be a chance for a sequel (which I would heartily endorse!).

Oct 23, 2018

I read late a couple of nights because I enjoyed this so much. One of my favorite eras, Britain during the blitz, and the way the author began her research was interesting.

It may move some as a chick book, but British woman authors have a story to tell in a way male authors simply don’t . And this is a very amusing book, too, and a sweet romance with a bit of tragedy. I have read nonfiction about this period, during the blitz, and what surprised me is how life simply went on normally. This reinforced that history with images of how people live with and in the war.

Some of the character development – for instance, Mrs. Bird – may be shallow, but it works quite well.

Read it with pleasure.

BPLpicks Oct 04, 2018

Plucky protagonist, Emmeline Lake accepts a job at a newspaper believing it to be the steppingstone to War Correspondent but instead, finds herself typing letters for an advice column. Mrs. Bird, the columnist, refuses to answer any letters she finds morally questionable, so Emmeline begins to reply to the women that Mrs. Bird ignores. If it is possible that a novel about wartime London can be lighthearted and funny while still touching on serious events, A.J. Pearce has done it here. I recommend it for readers who like spunky, good-hearted characters who despite their best intentions get themselves into silly scrapes but come through with charm and humour.

Sep 28, 2018

While the plot is entirely predictable, I really enjoyed this book. The writing is great - engaging and clever, with the right amount of pathos and brilliant bits of humor sprinkled throughout. I didn't want to put it down.

Sep 08, 2018

Top shelf! What a great, debut novel. It starts off a bit light and fluffy, especially for wartime London, but the characters are endearing and it is a delightful novel. It really ramps up as it reaches the mid-way point. Courage, friendship, hope, perseverance. Definitely recommend.

ylpladults Aug 23, 2018

This WWII novel is set in London and features a plucky heroine. Emmy wants to be a war journalist, but ends up a typist for an advice columnist who doesn’t want to write about anything emotional. Emmy takes pity on a few of the letter writers and secretly answers some. This is a charming novel, warm and funny, without taking away from any of the grimness of WWII London. Fans of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society might like this book.

minerva Aug 21, 2018

Loved it! Light-hearted (in the main) but well-written and quite charming, with good historical detail. Critics keep in mind that twenty-somethings were much different 80 years ago...

Aug 16, 2018

Delightful story that hides the depth of living under nightly bombing horror with a perky upbeat main character.

Dec 1940 during the Blitz of London, Emmeline Lake's story of friendship during good times and bad, shows her fortitude to support the home-front war effort by volunteering on the fire brigade phones all night then work all day on a few hours of sleep.

Emmy is undaunted by a job situation when she finds herself working for the stern, old Mrs. Bird, advice columnist, at a women's weekly publication. Emmy's coping mechanism is a bit unorthodox.

When faced with tragedy, Emmy's determination to do the right thing is heart wrenching but proves her worthiness as a friend and value as an employee.

This seems like a 'light read' until you are drawn into the devastation Londoners faced every morning after a bombing raid. Charming British idioms of the era.

ArapahoeKati Aug 13, 2018

I adored this. It was like WWII Bridget Jones, witty, fun, engaging and full of great Britishisms (like dicky tummy for stomachache!). What a delightful novel. Highly recommend.

Aug 11, 2018

Delightful tale of Emmie who dreams of being a war correspondent during the early days of World War II in England. She takes a job which is with a woman's magazine instead of the daily paper where she just knew she would fulfill her dream. This story follow her life on the magazine and her volunteer job with the fire brigade. Emmie's life is filled with friends, love and interesting characters. Good debut novel by this author and a nice read.

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