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I don’t post much fiction on this site, but Major Pettigrew is a not-to-be-missed personality. Helen Simmonson’s debut novel sings with clarity, wisdom, excellent writing and a plot that churns up to the last page. If you liked Agatha Christie’s wry spoofs of English country villages and Barrow’s & Shaffer’s soft courageous portrayal of the Guernsey islands during WWII you’ll be in line for this one.

Covering such issues as racism, the denial of the outsider, and intercultural misunderstandings, the novel threads it way through a series of related events fraught with social gaffes and a ironic nuance, only to finally bring us to a very satisfying and unabashedly heartwarming conclusion.

Oh yes, no doubt about  it. Solid A

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