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A wonderfully nostalgic, amusing and beautiful read set in 1941 (with a little bit of heartache on the side).
What a truly beautiful read this is, light, bright and cheerful (yet not at all frothy), there are also some heartachingly deep and dark depths waiting to be discovered. It’s 1941 and Emmeline desperately wants to become a war correspondent, she somehow finds herself working for an agony aunt and begins to secretly reply to the letters Mrs Bird refuses to answer. Emmeline tells her own tale in the most wonderfully spirited tone of voice, I could hear her so clearly, and immediately warmed to her energy and courage. A.J. Peace weaves the story of sparkling, heartfelt friendship quite marvellously through the air raids, dances, blackouts and rationing. I found myself immersed in 1941, I opened my eyes and my heart to the characters and evocative descriptions. Part of me wanted to encourage Emmeline, to clap and smile as her subterfuge escaped notice, while the other part offered caution, a number of ‘eeeks’, and I had a cushion ready to hide behind just in case. Dear Mrs Bird is just so gloriously readable, it really is an entertaining, affectionate discovery of delight and I’m keeping my fingers firmly crossed that there is more to come from the gorgeous Emmeline.
London, 1941. Amid the falling bombs Emmeline Lake dreams of becoming a fearless Lady War Correspondent. Unfortunately, Emmy instead finds herself employed as a typist for the formidable Henrietta Bird, the renowned agony aunt at Woman's Friend magazine. Mrs Bird refuses to read, let alone answer, letters containing any form of Unpleasantness, and definitely not those from the lovelorn, grief-stricken or morally conflicted. But the thought of these desperate women waiting for an answer at this most desperate of times becomes impossible for Emmy to ignore. She decides she simply must help and secretly starts to write back - after all, what harm could that possibly do?
|Publication date:||27th December 2018|
|Author:||A. J. Pearce|
|Publisher:||Picador an imprint of Pan Macmillan|
|Collections:||40+ Novels That Feature Friendship,|
|Primary Genre||Historical fiction|
Closing date: 30/05/2021
Uplifting, funny and enormously moving. - Saga magazine
I just adored Dear Mrs Bird and think it should be available on prescription, it is such a tonic. It's so clever and wise but sweet and moving too. Just the ticket -- Harriet Evans, author of The Wildflowers Emmy, her best friend, Bunty, and Mrs Bird herself are wonderful characters. Rich, warm, funny....I loved them. [...]And I loved A.J. Pearce's writing. It's warm and humorous, and brilliantly engaging. - The People's Friend
A sweet and charming read -- Prima magazine (A) moving and funny debut of friendship and kindness in the Blitz. -- Elle magazine I loved Dear Mrs Bird, the joyous debut of AJ Pearce - Good Housekeeping
A delicious debut, chirpy, funny, romantic and genuinely moving -- Psychologies magazine Charming, funny and moving, this is a total joy of a read -- Fabulous magazine Incredibly funny yet very touching, [Dear Mrs Bird] explores friendship and romance against the bleak backdrop of the Blitz with trademark British humour and a stiff upper lip. - Daily Express
Unmissable... An enchanting debut - heat magazine
A proper comfort read -- India Knight Quirky and charming - Sunday Mirror
Uplifting, moving and deeply enjoyable, Dear Mrs Bird is a gem of a novel - Sunday Express
A gloriously old-fashioned tale with guts and I absolutely adored it - The Sun
Thoroughly charming . . . A joyous tale about female friendship -- The Bookseller, `Book of the Month' Like Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, Dear Mrs Bird manages to strike a delicate balance between funny and heart breaking. When we need it most, Dear Mrs Bird is a wonderful, uplifting novel and, like its heroine, its breathless, giddy tone has real depth and heart. - Red magazine
A delight: witty, tear-jerking and a vivid depiction of the time. I absolutely loved it. -- Woman & Home magazine `Pick of the Month' A wonderful wartime story that is funny, yet poignant and realistic. I can't wait for the next in the series. -- Kate Fforde - Daily Mail
What a lovely, cheery novel this is. Skewering snobbery and prudishness with the lightest of touches, it also portrays the difficulties of the home front. -- Elizabeth Buchan - Daily Mail
Dear Mrs Bird has the edge . . . I loved the concept of a light-hearted historical novel inspired by real Forties letters sent into advice columns, which highlight how women's lives were affected amid the `stiff upper lip' attitudes of the time. If it appears on our screens as a series any time soon, remember I called it first. -- Millie Hurst - Stylist
Imagine Bridget Jones running amok in the wartime world of Mrs Miniver. AJ Pearce's hoot of a debut, Dear Mrs Bird is a comic confection that is sweetly uplifting. - Sunday Times
Dear Mrs Bird is a triumph - authentic, funny and packed with heart. Emmeline Lake is the perfect heroine, completely embodying the spirit of the times. I rooted for her from the very first page, laughed, cried and cheered with her to the finish. This is an utter delight of a book, deliciously drawn and gloriously uplifting. I adored it! -- Miranda Dickinson, Sunday Times Bestselling Author This adorable debut set during the Blitz is already being called the literary tonight of the year. Emmy Lake is secretary to Mrs Henrietta Bird, the fearsome agony aunt of Woman's Friend magazine, who refuse to consider letters containing any 'unpleasantness'. But Emmy rebels and starts secretly to writer back to correspondents. Uplifting, funny and enormously moving. - Saga magazine
What better tonic for times like these than this spritely tale of female guts and derring do in wartime London. A story bathed in good cheer, it celebrates the power of female friendship in difficult times and how writing a letter might heal the sorest of hearts. A charm of a novel, undercut by a seam of genuine sadness at the losses we must all face as life rolls on. -- Mary Paulson-Ellis, author of The Other Mrs Walker Dear Mrs Bird is an adorable novel, charming, funny, and uplifting; a WW2 London-Blitz tears 'n' cheers plucky-gal romance with excellent jokes, serious sorrows, a great friendship and a Celia Johnson accent. Catch a cold immediately and retire to bed with it -- Louisa Young, author of My Dear I Wanted to Tell You A thoroughly lovely book, and reading it is like a great big shot of serotonin in the arm. I defy anyone not to fall for its numerous charms -- Kate Riordan Dear Mrs Bird is an utterly enchanting debut: cheering, compelling, charming. If you loved Their Finest this is for you. -- Amanda Craig, author of The Lie of The Land Utterly charming and helplessly funny -- Jenny Colgan Witty, wise and full of charm . . . I absolutely loved it -- Rachel Lucas Books that make you shake with laughter and sob with tears are rare. I gulped this one down but didn't stop thinking about it for a long time -- Katie Fforde I've never read a novel that has grabbed me by the heart quite so much as this one - Shelley Harris
An utterly charming story of friendship, heartbreak and heroism... You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll love it -- Lucy Diamond A joy from start to finish. Dear Mrs Bird is as funny as it is heart-warming. -- John Boyne, author The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas I fell in love with Dear Mrs Bird on page one and completely adored every single word . . . a wonderfully heartwarming book, which I will recommend to everyone I know -- Jill Mansell Irresistibly charming and delightful -- Kate Eberlen, author of Miss You Dear Mrs Bird is an adorable novel, charming, funny, and uplifting . . . Catch a cold immediately and retire to bed with it -- Louisa Young, author of My Dear I Wanted To Tell You Here's a refreshing take on the Second World War novel. Dear Mrs Bird is charming without being twee, full of fun and heart, and will being you to tears. -- Sarah Shaffi - Stylist
When we need it most, Dear Mrs Bird is a wonderful, uplifting novel and, like its heroine, its breathless, giddy tone has real depth and heart. In the very worst of times, Britain's `finest generation' always found the light in the darkness, which is an important message worth remembering during our own worst times. -- Sarra Manning - Red
A marvellous treat. Charming and delightful. -- Nina Stibbe, author of Love, Nina A joyfully uplifting and optimistic novel . . . a timely story of courage and good humour in adversity. - Observer
If I had only known how much I was going to adore Dear Mrs Bird, I wouldn't have gobbled it down all at once. Funny, fresh, and touching, Dear Mrs Bird is a treat of a read. It has ruined me for all the books I'm supposed to be reading. Where will I find another novel so fresh and delightful? -- Annie Barrows, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society This story of female friendship is just the tonic for that jaded feeling that the world is ugly and mad. - The Times
The sweetest, most uplifting, lovely book about courage, friendship, love . . . It'll be huge; it deserves to be -- Marian Keyes, author of The Break A winning wartime romp . . . as hilarious as it is moving. Emmy is truly charming. When her upper lip finally wobbles, the reader's will, too. In the end, the novel's spirit is madly winning, and its foregrounding of wartime women seems spiffingly modern. - Guardian
A. J. Pearce grew up in Hampshire and studied at the University of Sussex. A chance discovery of a 1939 woman's magazine became the inspiration for her ever-growing collection and her first novel Dear Mrs Bird. She now lives in the south of England.More About A. J. Pearce