Read My Dear Bessie: A Love Story in Letters by Chris Barker Bessie Moore Simon Garfield Online

my-dear-bessie-a-love-story-in-letters

Twenty hours have gone since I last wrote. I have been thinking of you. I shall think of you until I post this, and until you get it. Can you feel, as you read these words, that I am thinking of you now; aglow, alive, alert at the thought that you are in the same world, and by some strange chance loving me.In September 1943, Chris Barker was serving as a signalman in NorthTwenty hours have gone since I last wrote. I have been thinking of you. I shall think of you until I post this, and until you get it. Can you feel, as you read these words, that I am thinking of you now; aglow, alive, alert at the thought that you are in the same world, and by some strange chance loving me.In September 1943, Chris Barker was serving as a signalman in North Africa when he decided to brighten the long days of war by writing to old friends. One of these was Bessie Moore, a former work colleague. The unexpected warmth of Bessie's reply changed their lives forever. Crossing continents and years, their funny, affectionate and intensely personal letters are a remarkable portrait of a love played out against the backdrop of the Second World War. Above all, their story is a stirring example of the power of letters to transform ordinary lives....

Title : My Dear Bessie: A Love Story in Letters
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781782115670
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 371 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

My Dear Bessie: A Love Story in Letters Reviews

  • Bettie☯
    2019-04-23 03:41

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b05r78dwDescription: A love story in letters played out against the backdrop of the Second World War between Chris Barker, a solider in North Africa, and Bessie Moore, a Morse code interpreter at the Foreign Office in London.A small blue box opened in 2008 revealed a wartime world of love, longing and frustration. On September 5th 1943, Chris Barker, a Signalman stationed near Tobruk decided to write to a former work colleague, Bessie Moore, back in London. The unexpected warmth of Bessie's reply changed their lives forever.Chris and Bessie's love letters first appeared in Simon Garfield's book To The Letter, they have toured literary festivals as part of Letters Live before getting their own book, My Dear Bessie, published this year on Valentine's Day.Hells bells, I don't usually like romance yet this was so touching because these letters are real.

  • Laura
    2019-04-24 00:27

    From BBC Radio 4 - Drama:A love story in letters played out against the backdrop of the Second World War between Chris Barker, a solider in North Africa, and Bessie Moore, a Morse code interpreter at the Foreign Office in London.Compiled by Simon Garfield and adapted for radio by Sara DaviesProduced by Gemma JenkinsA small blue box opened in 2008 revealed a wartime world of love, longing and frustration.On September 5th 1943, Chris Barker, a Signalman stationed near Tobruk decided to write to a former work colleague, Bessie Moore, back in London. The unexpected warmth of Bessie's reply changed their lives forever.Chris and Bessie's love letters first appeared in Simon Garfield's book To The Letter, they have toured literary festivals as part of Letters Live before getting their own book, My Dear Bessie, published this year on Valentine's Day.

  • Ladycraft
    2019-05-17 00:28

    Exceeds expectations. Received my preorder earlier than expected. If an audiobook version is ever released, it'll simply have to be Louise Brealey and Benedict Cumberbatch. They did such an excellent job at the Hay Festival that I just can't imagine anyone else in those roles. I'd pay any asking price if it were them and that pre-order button would be hit the moment it appears.

  • Charlie
    2019-05-20 22:26

    5/5 brilliant stars!Wow! What a book! To say I was completely bowled over with My Dear Bessie is the complete understatement of the year. I believe it is entirely safe to assume that this is one of my all-time favourites! I fell in love the moment the book arrived on my doorstep and I eagerly ripped into the packaging to discover the hidden depths of true love.The book contains a large number of letters written by a young man otherwise known as Chris Barker who had joined the army in the year 1942. The recipient of the letters was a young woman called Bessie Moore, who stayed and worked back home in England. The first few letters were only passed by being mere acquaintances to one another. Little to them did they know that they would soon become lovers, torn apart by war and distance with only letters to keep in contact, and express their true feelings; worries, fears and concerns to one another over the coming years. The letters came into their future son’s possession many years later, when Chris asked if he wanted them or to throw them away. Thank the lord he accepted! These letters are nothing more than the true works of love at work. Sounds very mushy to be honest, and yes it is! But the fact that the love shines through in every letter only makes it more real to feel and believe in. It’s hard not to fall in this couple!! The book is mainly made up of letters by Chris that were kept by Bessie at home. Unfortunately due to Chris constantly being on the move and always having to watch what he took with him, he had to burn a lot of the letters Bessie sent him! Which is a real shame because I would have loved to have read more by Bessie but understandable as to why we couldn’t. I would say the book is mainly filled with 90% Chris and the remainder 10% is by Bessie. But it works out fine that way. Chris had such a way with words, I often found myself blushing an awful lot! It was a good thing I was alone when reading this otherwise, people would have been staring for sure. What was said between them both made me laugh out loud on several occasions; blush like a bright red tomato whilst swooning over the hot whispered words Chris lovingly said to Bessie and bittersweet smiles at the achiness of them both needing and wanting each other. Chris- “So I may write as I feel-would that I could. These words would burn the paper and scorch you. I do think of you hourly. You set all my senses humming and make me sweat. I want to feel you, I want to go with you to a quiet place and tell you with my body what I can only half say in words.”When they finally meet up together when Chris manages to get some leave, the letters are stopped and resumed of course when he has to return back to the army. All of the passion building up to them meeting properly was almost like a kick in the stomach for not being able to see how they reacted and interacted with one another. But it’s a stark reminder that it was/is real life and not a fairy tale story. The moment when Chris finally proposed to Bessie and her reply came through had me wooing and shouting loudly “Yes!” over and over again to empty air for quite some time. To say I had a big smile on my face for the rest of the day is a true fact. The times when Chris mentioned for Bessie not to announce their relationship to friends and family also made me shy away from the book. I felt incredibly naughty, almost as if peering into someone’s forbidden diary. But then after reading their son’s after words at the end of the book made me wholeheartedly agree with his words. “I worry that I have exposed their love when privacy was important to them but I am also pleased that their writing has won their so many new friends. I believe their life and love belong to the ages.” Amen!I have since discovered reading the book, which parts of their letters were read out live by the actors Benedict Cumberbatch and Louise Brealy. I love these two people. If anyone was to read their letters and bring their voices to life, it would always be these two. It was a true delight to listen to their letters come alive, and I really wish that they would read out loud the complete book and make it into an audio book. I’m not keen on audiobooks as I find it hard to listen and pay true attention, however I know I would a lot of money to listen to these guys repeat Chris and Bessie’s whispered words of longing to one another. I pretty much found myself in near complete denial when I reached the end of Chris’s letters to Bessie. I couldn’t believe it was over. Through accounts of their son and granddaughter, we find out what happened to them both after the war and Chris finally managed to come home. I’m so pleased that they finally managed to find their paradises with one another, their home and their family after being denied access for so many years. It appears they were true soulmates and if anyone were to ask me the definition of what are soulmates then I would simply point them in the direction of Chris and Bessie. A book I will be forever be grateful I purchased and a book that will proudly sit my bookshelf. An all-time favourite and a true love that will forever stay with me.

  • Mandy Setterfield
    2019-04-24 02:43

    What a wonderful book, I couldn't put it down! A series of letters sent between a soldier in Africa and Italy in WW2 and an old friend in London. They fall in love from a great distance, which gives the book a tremendous narrative drive. What if he is killed before they meet? When they meet, will they even fancy each other? is there any chance they will be able to live happily ever after? If you've read and enjoyed Nella Last's War, this is one for you.

  • Wanda
    2019-05-03 23:23

    23 APR 2015 - recommended by Dear Friend, Laura. Many thanks!

  • Victoria Goldman
    2019-05-15 03:35

    Thanks to social media and instant messaging, the art of letter writing appears to have been lost over the decades. As a teenager, I would send letters to friends who lived up the road, just for the sheer pleasure of receiving post. Now my teen and pre-teen simply text, message or Skype when they want to contact their friends - no more waiting in anticipation for a reply or writing long descriptive paragraphs of events or emotions.My Dear Bessie is a love story, an insight into wartime romance. The raw emotion in the letters between Chris and Bessie is divine. The devotion and concern for one another. The feelings they couldn't bear to bottle up or hide away. People struggled to cope with their loved ones being away for long periods of time, missing them both physically and emotionally, yet - as this book shows - love could survive and even blossom through the war. The descriptions of the wartime events, both in London and abroad, are truly fascinating to read. Within their letters, Chris and Bessie discuss moral and political issues, providing historical background. I found it fascinating to read how the British service men passed their time whilst abroad - how they still enjoyed local culture, for example, and sent photos and packages home.The letters are fairly one sided, as unfortunately Chris had to destroy many of Bessie's letters due to lack of storage space. However, he does refer to her letters within his own, which helps to keep the flow going.If you love old-fashioned love stories and wartime romance, My Dear Bessie is a wonderful read.I received an Advanced Reader Copy from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  • Lucy
    2019-05-08 21:27

    I loved reading My Dear Bessie for the romance it contained, for the way it humanised the War experience and for the glimpse it offers the reader into the past. When Chris and Bessie first start corresponding they are merely friends and yet it was Bessie’s first crucial reply that would change both of their lives forever.‘I was quite OK before I got your first letter. I was rational, objective. But now that you have my ear – I must give you my heart as well! No doubt it is wrong, certainly it is indiscreet, to blurt out such things when the future laughs that only presents conditions make me like this. But I am like this.’ Due to practical reasons explained in the books introduction the majority of the letters in My Dear Bessie are written by Chris and yet the reader is able to gain such an insight in to both Chris and Bessie’s personalities. Both are strong Labour supporters; Chris leans heavily towards Socialism even during the Greece occupation and Bessie helps Labour with the 1945 election. They are pragmatic yet romantic, youthful yet mature, unconventional yet traditional...Full review can be found on at www.forgettheclassicsireadromance.blo...

  • Nicola
    2019-05-11 01:47

    I've been reading this forever because it's my before bed when I'm reading a hardback book. It's very sweet and warm with some great gems. The family afterwords are lovely too. It could definitely have been edited down more, though, and there's far less Bessie than billed. Probably a better experience on audio.

  • Beatrice Rogers
    2019-04-25 23:51

    I would give this 3 and a half but don't know how to do the half. The thread through the letters is fascinating with some comments about the War absolutely fascinating and giving a new perspective with details I had never known.

  • Penny Blakemore
    2019-05-18 02:44

    I didn't think I could fall in love with two people so easily, but I did. Christopher Barker proves to be an incredible writer, and Bessie an a accomplished woman. They're a perfect pair. This collection of letters will stay with me for the rest of my life.

  • Kate
    2019-04-24 23:47

    United by letters, separated by WWII, they wrote and wrote and wrote-- sometimes more than one letter in a day. And we live that time along with them, day by day. Sadly, Christopher had to destroy his cache of letters from Bessie as the War took him along, so we don't hear her voice as much as we would like to. But oh his voice-- so smart, so droll, so warm. Having met this dear couple in Garfield's "To the Letter," I already knew that they would be safely together at last, but to the last page of "My Dear Bessie"I still was on the edge of my chair from the day-to-day suspense of their hopes for a shared life. Sweet! That said-- as I was pondering which fortunate friend would be the first to be loaned my copy of this book, it crossed my mind that some might find the very frequent topic of Bessie's breasts to be more-than-enough. Oh, but if they could only stay til the final pages and read about Chris and Bessie as described by the younger generations of Barkers-- surely they would see that it was all romantic and still is. A real marriage of true minds.

  • Heather Lawson
    2019-05-10 02:51

    Originally posted here: https://heatherreviews.com/2017/01/19...This is such a beautiful idea for a novel: reprinting the love letters and showing how a solid relationship formed between two people who were worlds apart during one of the most dangerous and uncertain times in our country’s history. While I still believe it’s a good idea, I don’t think that this book in particular was edited together very well (personally) and it was a little disappointing.Chris and Bessie have known each other for a while but have never really paid attention. Then Chris gets called to war and they begin writing letters… hundreds upon hundreds of letters. Their love unfolds through the years, prevailing through the war and uncertain times.I picked this book up a long time ago and stopped around 30% because it was becoming repetitive. There’s only so many times you can read Chris talking about Bessie’s bosom before you have to stop. A lot of the letters from Bessie are missing and I feel that it really takes away from the natural flow of the letters to have them be so one-sided. I appreciate that some of the letters were burned and so they obviously couldn’t be included, but it made it much more difficult to read.It was an interesting insight into what the minds of ordinary people were like during the War. I found Chris’s army travels quite interesting, specifically since he wasn’t at the heart of the fighting in France but rather across Europe.I’m glad I picked the book back up to finish it because the end of the story is beautiful. When talking about the life they want for their child and seeing the first home they bought (which is beautiful a ridiculously cheap! If only house prices were still so affordable!). It’s a wonderful journey to be taken on once you get over the hump of repetitiveness at the beginning.In all honesty, I found the afterword from Chris and Bessie’s children and grandchildren to be much more interesting than their own letters. I enjoyed reading about the kind of parents they were, the kind of grandparents, and what they did with their domestic lives after the war.An interesting insight into a well-known time in history, I definitely think this is worth giving a read if you’re a WWII buff.

  • aixin
    2019-04-26 04:39

    I came across this from scrolling through Louise Brealey's (Molly from 'Sherlock') Twitter, and went on to watch her and Benedict Cumberbatch (squee) read this at the Hay Festival (last year, I think). I'm very fond of letter writing myself, and this is a dear collection of letters than remind me of the enduring nature of humanity in the face of war and tragedy ... as well as the funny and mundane sides of it. This story does have a happy ending –– after reading too many tragedies recently –– and it is the happy ending of two lives well led. Do read it, and watch Benedict Cumberbatch and Louise Brealey do a fantastic job at it on YouTube.

  • Liza Shaw
    2019-05-07 04:27

    This was an intriguing book, as well as informative and heartwarming. The book is a collection of letters that Chris sent to Bessie, and showed us, not only did love survive the war, but also that love can blossom and survive. The last chapter is from their grandson, and tells the lovely story of their long and happy life together. My only gripe is that the letters are one sided, so it was kinda like listening to one end of a phone call. So it is a great shame that more of Bessie's letters didn't survive.Overall a lovely little book for anyone to curl up with.

  • Jessica
    2019-05-09 02:31

    What started off as an innocent correspondence between two lonely people in a war torn Europe soon became a passionate exchange between lovers. Some of the letters are sweet and endearing, others will leave you hot and bothered (Chris adores every inch of Bessie... in detail). It's a wonderful window into the past. Bessie and Chris are both sweet, awkward and so madly in love that it's hard not to love these two people and root for them. A light read but a well worth one none the less!

  • Caitlin
    2019-05-05 04:43

    Amazingly beautiful and touching love letters. So grateful to Benedict Cumberbatch and Louise Brealey for reading exerpts at Letters Live in 2014. Especially grateful to Loo for tweeting videos of the reads and giving me an awareness to this great love and updates regarding the completion of the book. I cherish Chris's letters to Bessie and find my own thoughts match many of his own. Very relate-able. I highly recommend to everyone.

  • Elize Heerden
    2019-05-01 20:42

    What a wonderful book, their letters to one another was filled with longing, desire, want for one another. The letters were inspiring. When it neared the end of Chris time in the army I was getting excited for him as his joy bubbled through in his letters to Bessie. What an amazing book would recommend this book to anyone and everyone!

  • Emma Dargue
    2019-05-20 20:30

    this book is amazing. Bessie and Chris's love story is told through beautifully crafted letters that touch your soul in the longing and want held within. The one thing I would loved a little more is Bessie's perspective but understand why and to be fair you can get the gist of what she was saying in her letters through Chris's letters. loved it from start to finish. highly recommended.

  • Nancy Schumann
    2019-04-30 02:42

    A wonderful insight to a war-time romance that show the people as well as the sides of war and post-war reality those of us who never experienced a war never think of.

  • Poviking
    2019-04-20 22:31

    I am sorry to say but I did not like this book at all. There wasn't any action just those letters full of exaggerated expression of love. It was completely boring. I do not recommend it to anyone.

  • Koti85
    2019-05-15 01:24

    I have to agree with those who did not like this book. It was definitely too much and was absolutely about nothing. If you don't want to die of boredom, don't read it!

  • Jo Weston
    2019-05-20 20:38

    This one I will have to read. The power of letter writing.

  • Ryan Williams
    2019-04-23 21:36

    Collection of real life letters between an ordinary guy and an ordinary girl in an extraordinary time. You catch yourself speed-reading to see what happens to the couple next.

  • Molly
    2019-04-28 03:28

    This is the stuff great novels and films are made of. I had a couple of issues with a couple of areas but other than that this was quite the read.

  • Vive-un-Livre
    2019-05-13 01:33

    Loved the raw emotion of the couple. So honest, so vulnerable. I wish more of Bessie's letters could have survived, to get her side of the war experience. An excellent read.

  • Luís Castilho
    2019-04-27 00:32

    Love letters are by definition mundane, and so is this book.

  • Anna
    2019-05-06 21:30

    So beautiful.. When I read this, I could only think about how sad it is that nowadays we don't write such letters.