Monday, 27 February 2012

Bibliophilia: A Family Secret & The Search by Eric Heuvel

A Family Secret – Eric Heuvel
The Search – Eric Heuvel

These two books give a very good overview from start to finish about the experience of Nazi occupation in Holland and all that it entailed, in an easy to digest format. The intertwined stories of two girls, Esther who fled Germany with her family to the Netherlands, and the Dutch girl who befriends her, Helena. Geared mainly towards young adults, but worth reading for any age group.

I know it’s easy to say that it was all in the past, but I still think it’s important to tell our kids what happened. I got pretty verklemt reading it. I don’t know if it’s based on a true story, but it read in many ways like it might have been my families story. The Berlage Brug, which is a block away from where I was born and grew up, makes an appearance in both books. 

To think that this might have been set in the neighbourhood I (and my parents) grew up in, isn’t inconceivable. It had a large Jewish population before the war. It didn’t after the war.

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