Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Postmistress

Sometimes I am skeptical of books that are the bestsellers, most talked about, or highly recommended. For some reason, they seem to fall flat for me, or do not live up to the hype. Thankfully, this was not the case with The Postmistress by Sarah Blake.
I have always been a fan of historical fiction, but have not picked one up by choice (i.e. book club) for a while. I was happy that I did.

The small town resonated with me. Growing up where everyone knows everyone, family secrets, past discretion's that are quickly judged, I could get a feel what it was like living in the small Cape Cod town.

Like many problems of the world today, how do we create empathy for people in places far away? The voice of Frankie Bard tried to bring the war home to the people. She was so strong and brazen, but eventually became tested by the war around her. In bringing the war to the people of America, she brought it to herself, deeply.

With Frankie bringing the war to this small town on the Cape, she touched the lives of Emma and James, newlyweds. Inspired by a story told by Frankie, James leaves to assist in London. He leaves a letter in the care of Iris, the local Postmistress, in case anything should happen. As the three lives are intertwined through the war, everyone loses a part of who they are, or once were.

Today we no longer have to depend on a Postmaster to deliver us news, whether it be good or bad. We are constantly connected with phones (call or texts), iPods, blogs, Twitter, Facebook. Are we becoming desensitized to the world around us? Are you less "connected" to people that we used to connect with? As we become global citizens, do we empathize with people facing
tragedies around the world? What can you change today, to make a real connection today?!

Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk

Well this one was interesting to say the least. Hard to put in words, really. A few comments that I can and will make are this:
I loved that the stories were short. Each story packed a punch with a commentary about the comedy of errors that we call life. After finishing each story, it made me reflect on what we humans do to each other on a daily basis. It allowed me to realize that no one is faultless, and we may have more faults than we are comfortable admitting to ourselves.
In this short time that we spend on this planet, it may be a gentle reminder on the impact we leave on others, the choice is ours.