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Major Pettigrew's Last Stand: A Novel by…
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Major Pettigrew's Last Stand: A Novel (edition 2010)

by Helen Simonson

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,4573871,100 (3.97)685
Member:vhaskell
Title:Major Pettigrew's Last Stand: A Novel
Authors:Helen Simonson
Info:Random House (2010), Edition: 1, Kindle Edition, 379 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:None

Work details

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson

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» See also 685 mentions

English (388)  Catalan (2)  French (2)  German (2)  Dutch (2)  Norwegian (1)  All (397)
Showing 1-5 of 388 (next | show all)
really liked the sample -- should make time to read full book?
  lulaa | Jun 25, 2017 |
This was a perfectly charming story featuring a love story between two mature people. The main character is Major Ernest Pettigrew, a widower living in a small British town. The story opens with the Major learning that his brother has died. In shock, he opens the door when the bell rings and finds on his doorstop Mrs. Ali, a widow who runs the local shop. Realizing his distress, Mrs. Ali helps the Major to a seat and fixes him some tea. So begins this gentle tale of two lonely people of like minds and hearts but completely different backgrounds and faiths. I loved Pettigrew's character. He is a true gentleman -- always proper and polite, a little bit stuffy but with an occasional wicked sense of humor. The Major comes into contact with the various people who populate his village. They are all perfectly willing to be polite to Mrs. Ali because the shop is necessary to the village, but they begin to frown on the thought of a relationship between she and the Major. Will the townspeople win and drive the two apart, or will the Major makes his last stand? ( )
  dorie.craig | Jun 22, 2017 |
This book is very likable, but for some strange reason, I found it boring. I am sure the problem must be me - but the events in this book were too far-fetched for my imagination to summon, some of the characters just irritated me. ( )
  Soulmuser | May 30, 2017 |
This was a story of love in later life set against the backdrop of village life and it's associated prejudices. It may sound dull and unexciting but it was amusing and well written, the characters developed and unfolded, in short I enjoyed the story, warmed to the Major, liked Mrs Ali and could have punched the obnoxious Roger. ( )
  Hanneri | May 21, 2017 |
Love this one.... absolutely loved it. At is heart, this story has a wonderful vibe and had me thinking of a lighter version of Jane Gardam's Old Filth, kind of like Old Filth] meets The Last of the Summer Wine what with the fantastic descriptions of the village of Edgecombe St. Mary and its inhabitants. Simonson has written a story with heart. All of the characters are well drawn - even the Major's son Roger, who I found to be the epitome of the modern day self absorbed corporate and social climber, completely oblivious of how inappropriately some of his comments and actions are. Major Pettigrew is all regimented in manners and action on the surface with a warm compassionate soul lurking underneath. Simonson captures the issues of cultural and tradition with a realistic eye, portraying Mrs. Jasmina Ali as a women caught between two worlds, struggling to be the contemporary English woman she is while her family's cultural values are pulling her back. The villagers are the perfect foil and through their various bumblings, Simonson is able to communicate a myriad of themes about culture, race, age-related prejudices and that it doesn't matter how old one is, courtship can have its awkward moments.

A delightful story filled with heart, compassion and humour. A refreshing reminder that things like joy and dignity can continue to exist, even in our crazy, fast forward materialistic world. ( )
1 vote lkernagh | May 1, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 388 (next | show all)
Simonson .. is having a great time with her first novel. She is unsparing in her willingness to send up her characters and their little village, and she is often downright funny – that intelligent kind of funny that catches readers by surprise and makes them re-read a sentence several times to figure out how the author managed to make them laugh out loud so unexpectedly.The book is almost always pitch-perfect in its demonstration of how ridiculous our small ignorances can be – and how magnificent we are when we rise above them.
 
This thoroughly charming novel wraps Old World sensibility around a story of multicultural conflict involving two widowed people who assume they're done with love. The result is a smart romantic comedy about decency and good manners in a world threatened by men's hair gel, herbal tea and latent racism..When depicted by the right storyteller, the thrill of falling in love is funnier and sweeter at 60 than at 16. The stakes are higher, after all, and the lovers have stored up decades of peculiarities and anxieties
 
As with the polished work of Alexander McCall Smith, there is never a dull moment but never a discordant note either. Still, this book feels fresh despite its conventional blueprint. Its main characters are especially well drawn, and Ms. Simonson makes them as admirable as they are entertaining. They are traditionally built, and that’s not just Mr. McCall Smith’s euphemism. It’s about intelligence, heart, dignity and backbone. “Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand” has them all.
 

» Add other authors (43 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Helen Simonsonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Altschuler, PeterNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tapia, SoniaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wallis, BillNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For John, Ian and Jamie
First words
Major Pettigrew was still upset about the phone call from his brother's wife and so he answered the doorbell without thinking.
Quotations
He finished his tea and rose from the table to go to his room. "But I must ask you, do you really understand what it means to be in love with an unsuitable woman?" "My dear boy," said the Major. "Is there really any other kind?"
"Careful, careful," he said, feeling a splash of scalding tea on his wrist. "Passion is all very well, but it wouldn't do to spill the tea."
Too few people today appreciate and pursue the delights of civilized culture for their own sake.
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Book description
Major Ernest Pettigrew, having retired to a quiet life in Edgecombe St. Mary, raises a few eyebrows in the small English village when he begins a relationship with widow Mrs. Jasmina Ali, a Pakistani shopkeeper.
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Major Ernest Pettigrew (retired) leads a quiet life in the village of St. Mary, England, until his brother's death sparks an unexpected friendship with Mrs. Jasmina Ali, the Pakistani shopkeeper from the village. Drawn together by their shared love of literature and the loss of their respective spouses, the Major and Mrs. Ali soon find their friendship blossoming into something more. But will their relationship survive in a society that considers Ali a foreigner?… (more)

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