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1940s Society Shop >  History >  Book Reviews >  Mrs Miniver

Mrs Miniver

A pre-war account of a how a middle class family cope with the preparations for war (Pub 1943).

Mrs Miniver
Written By Jan Struther

Mrs Miniver

A Review by Jan Bayley

I received an original 1942 copy of 'Mrs Miniver' as a present this Christmas and was surprised to discover that it is still available from the shops today. Having seen the well known film "Mrs Miniver" I was keen to get started and when I finally managed to read it I found I could not put it down, quickly finishing it in a couple of days.

The book "Mrs Miniver" was written as a column in The Times during the late 1930's and was extremely popular. It tells the story of a middle class family through the 1930's in a series of short stories and letters. Chapters describe such things as how the family went along to get their gasmasks, the effect of the evacuation of children (and the finding of homes for these evacuees) and ends with the out break of war and how people felt.

I suppose that these columns were the basis of the film 'Mrs Miniver' (which was an American made wartime propaganda film) but do not bare much resembalence to it. As 'Mrs Miniver' was already a household name with the public here in Britain one can imagine how this film proved very popular, but those who remember the film may be a little disappointed with the book as it does not include the actual war.

It is however a most enjoyable read and of special interest to those who want to read about Britain's Home front preparations and early wartime life. An excellent piece of social history and a good read.

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