Published by: Amy Einhorn Books
Published on: February 2010
Page Count: 318
Genre: Historical Fiction
My Reading Format: Hardcover purchased from Powells.
Available Formats: Hardcover, paperback, eBook, audiobook
Giveaway: Please leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of The Postmistress. (US/Canada only)
Today it is my great pleasure to be Sarah Blake’s host on her TLC Book Tour. This tour is to celebrate her novel, The Postmistress.
I have a lot of fun working as a tour host for TLC Book Tours. They always have great books and authors on tour. Check out their website for more information on this tour and the others that they are hosting.
The Postmistress tells the story of three very different American woman during the time before their country entered into World War II. Iris and Emma are both fairly new year long residents of Franklin, Massachusetts, a summer destination along Cape Cod. Iris, a woman approaching middle age, serves as Franklin’s postmaster. As a female, she is a curiosity to the town. Soon, she earns their respect for running an efficient, orderly post office. Emma moves to Franklin after marrying her husband, Dr. Fitch. His family has a scandalous past, yet he still returns home to start his medical practice. Since losing her entire family to illness, Emma clings to Will with all her might and has a difficult time feeling comfortable in Franklin. Frankie, like Iris, is a woman ahead of her time. She is serving as a war time correspondent in London under Edward R. Murrow. She fights against the general perception that only men should report on the war. As the German bombing intensifies, she finds herself wanting to discover and tell the true story of the war. In doing so, the lives of all three woman are brought together.
The Postmistress and I got off to a bumpy start. At the very beginning, Iris sees a gynecologist for the express purpose of confirming her virginity and receiving certification of that fact for a man she believes may interested in her romantically. The doctor was aghast and so was I. While I understand that proof of virginity was once an important thing, this still took me out of the story before it really even started. How is it that a woman who made a postmaster of herself would feel the need to become a “certified virgin” for a man is beyond me. I’m sure that there are logical reasons why a successful woman might make such a decision, but this didn’t endear me to Iris and I never fully overcame it.
Thankfully, Iris didn’t play as much of a role in the story as the title might otherwise suggest. The heart of the novel was with Frankie as she covered the war in Europe and found herself on the trail of the true story behind what was happening to Europe’s Jews. This part of the novel completely engrossed me. I felt as though I was in London with her, always on guard for the German bombers. I understood how important newscasters became to Americans back home and why Edward R. Murrow became so revered. I loved Frankie’s fire and courage in the face of the enemy and the news censors.
I asked to join this TLC Book Tour to “force myself” to finally sit down and read Sarah Blake’s novel. I’m so very glad that I did. The sections of the book in Europe reawakened my interest in a time period I sometimes tend to avoid. While I may have enjoyed the book been focused entirely on Frankie, I appreciate the connection back to the United States. It is that connection that packed a punch at the end of the novel. It is that connection that sparked Frankie’s evolution as a person and as a reporter. This novel wouldn’t have been the same without it.
Sarah Blake’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Tuesday, March 1st: You’ve GOTTA Read This!
Thursday, March 3rd: Amusing Reviews
Friday, March 4th: Musings of an All Purpose Monkey
Monday, March 7th: Caribousmom
Thursday, March 10th: Book Reviews by Molly
Monday, March 14th: One Person’s Journey Through a World of Books
Tuesday, March 15th: Book Club Classics!
Wednesday, March 16th: Debbie’s Book Bag
Thursday, March 17th: In the Next Room
Monday, March 21st: Peeking Between the Pages
Wednesday, March 23rd: Red Headed Book Child
Thursday, March 24th: Diary of an Eccentric
Friday, March 25th: Life in Review
Monday, March 28th: Suko’s Notebook
Tuesday, March 29th: Books and Movies
Wednesday, March 30th: Stephanie’s Written Word