Monday, October 11, 2021

Monday Book Review - Major Pettigrew's Last Stand

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson is a charming read. It's rather old fashioned, sweet, sturdy, and witty. The author allows you to enter a small village and feel like a spy as you get caught up in an unlikely romance. 

back blurb: Major Ernest Pettigrew (retired) of Edgecombe St. Mary is wry, courtly, opinionated, and completely endearing. He values proper Englishman things - honor, duty, decorum, and a properly brewed cup of tea. But his brother's death sparks an unexpected friendship with Mrs. Jasmina Ali, a widow Pakistani shopkeeper. Can their relationship survive the risks one takes when pursuing happiness in the face of culture and tradition?

p. 120 "Whenever I order it now, it never seems to taste quite as I remember," said the Major

"Ah, the foods of childhood," said Mrs. Ali breaking into a smile. "I believe the impossibility of recreating such dishes may be due more to an unfortunate stubbornness of memory than any inherent failure of preparation."

Every page is delightful to read, and I wanted to sit with the Major and Mrs. Ali, drink tea, and discuss literature. Or take a walk in the English countryside, dawdle looking out to the sea. And I rooted for them as they encountered problems, family issues, and the rudeness of villager friends. I highly recommend Major Pettigrew's Last Stand. 




  1. The Major encompasses many endearing traits and his upstanding thoughts and actions make him a winner in my book. The highly educated shopkeeper, Mrs Ali, proves to have the nerve and verve to act as a balance to the many stories within the story. Together they bring a common sense outlook to love and life.

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    1. You just gave the perfect sum up. This book is just a delight and when I finished it, I sat and smiled.

  2. Hi Joanne - sounds a little like Ms Marple ... but great review for us - cheers Hilary