While reading this book I was at first, thanks to the title expecting there to be much more about The Postmistress. It didn’t matter in the end as it turned out that the story was actually three stories, linked together by The Postmistress herself. A heart wrenching story of three young women, that at first was confusing, as it took me awhile to understand how the protagonists tales were all going to weave together.
Iris James is the postmistress in Cape Cod, Emma Fitch is the Cape Cod doctor’s wife and Frankie Bard is a radio journalist. The story follows the young women as WWII touches the lives of them all, but in very different ways until their paths cross thanks to fate. Initially Iris and Emma listen to Frankie’s radio broadcasts from a London under siege from nightly bombings. A war that is far from home and difficult to comprehend even after Emma’s husband goes there to work helping the war effort with his much needed skills.
It is certainly a tantalizing mix of stories with a huge cast of peripheral characters that are all important to the overall understanding of this emotional novel. Without exception I thought every single one of the characters in this novel felt like ordinary human beings, real people living through traumatic episodes, horribly realistic. What more can I say really without spoiling it except to urge you to read this.
Born in New York city, Sarah taught high school and college English for many years in Colorado and New York. She has taught fiction workshops at the Fine Arts Works Centre in Provincetown, MA, The Writer’s Centre, in Bethesda MD, The University of Maryland, and The George Washington University. She lives in Washington DC with her husband, the poet Joshua Weiner, and their two sons.
I found this book trailer an excellent introduction to The Postmistress.
If you are interested in learning more about the novel, I found an interesting interview Kathryn Stockett interviews Sarah Blake on Goodreads