Dear Mrs Bird
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Dear Mrs Bird

3.81 (7,271 ratings by Goodreads)
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The Richard & Judy Book Club Pick and Sunday Times Bestseller

'Funny, fresh, and touching, Dear Mrs Bird is a treat of a read.' Annie Barrows, author of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

'The sweetest, most uplifting, lovely book about courage, friendship, love . . . It'll be huge; it deserves to be' Marian Keyes

London, 1941. Emmeline Lake and her best friend Bunty are trying to stay cheerful despite the Luftwaffe making life thoroughly annoying for everyone. Emmy dreams of becoming a Lady War Correspondent and when she spots a job advertisement in the newspaper she seizes her chance - but after a rather unfortunate misunderstanding, she finds herself typing letters for the formidable Henrietta Bird, the renowned agony aunt of Woman's Friend magazine.

Mrs Bird is very clear: letters containing any form of Unpleasantness must go straight into the bin. But as Emmy reads the desperate pleas from women who may have Gone Too Far with the wrong man, or can't bear to let their children be evacuated, she decides the only thing for it is to secretly write back . . .

Irresistibly funny and enormously moving, Dear Mrs Bird by AJ Pearce is a love letter to the enduring power of friendship, the kindness of strangers and the courage of ordinary people in extraordinary times.

'A marvellous treat. Charming and delightful' Nina Stibbe

'A joy from start to finish. Dear Mrs Bird is as funny as it is heart-warming' John Boyne
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Product details

  • Hardback | 320 pages
  • 143 x 223 x 30mm | 448g
  • PICADOR
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Main Market Ed
  • 1509853898
  • 9781509853892
  • 2,768

Review quote

Sharply observed, witty and with a memorable narrative voice, this upbeat and winning novel proves an absolute delight. * Daily Mail * Pip pip! This tale of female friendship in Second World War London is simply topping - and stuffed with 1940s slang. Emmeline Lake is determined to make it as a "Lady War Correspondent". Instead, she ends up employed by the fearsome agony aunt Mrs Bird. * The Times, Saturday Review, The best new novels to read on holiday this summer * This hoot of a debut about life on a Second World War periodical is like Bridget Jones running amok in the world of Mrs Miniver. * The Times, The 100 best books to read this summer * 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 *
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About AJ Pearce

AJ Pearce grew up in Hampshire. 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.
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Rating details

7,271 ratings
3.81 out of 5 stars
5 22% (1,633)
4 44% (3,174)
3 28% (2,041)
2 5% (346)
1 1% (77)
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