I found this book to be an intriguing WWII novel to read. I can tell the author went to great lengths to cover the historical accuracy of the time period. I really liked the plot and Christian themes so I would give it five stars for that. But I felt like there was an overall lack of character development. Sadly, I couldn't seem to get a real good connection with who the characters were (other than with their hardships). The reading flow seemed kind of choppy too. Also a wee bit depressing, but to be expected from a WWII novel. I don't like to criticize (as I can't write a novel worth a darn anyways), but I am Just giving an honest opinion. Overall I would still recommend it for anyone who wants to read an interesting WWII novel.
Wow! I think the cover of Snow on the Tulips is breathtaking, moving, and utterly beautiful. And now that I have read the book, I can say that the story inside the cover is equally so! What a wonderful book!
The story is set in the Netherlands during WWII and is based on a combination of two true stories passed down through the author's family. Snow on the Tulips touched my heart deeply. Then, reading afterward that it was based on real events made it even more special to me.
The characters in Snow on the Tulips feel so very real to me. Cornelia has experienced horrible pain in her life. Widowed four years earlier, she carries that pain around with her fear. Gerrit fights to undermine the Nazi's and weaken them, hoping to clear the way for the Allies to save their people. When Gerrit and Cornelia's paths cross and it is up to Cornelia to help save Gerrit, will she be able to put aside her fear and do what needs to be done?
One of the things I enjoyed about this book is that the decisions that the characters had to make were not "cut and dried". Meaning, the choice was not necessarily an easy or clear one. The decision to face danger and try to help the Resistance was not an easy one to make. The characters had to weigh when to hide themselves away and when to put themselves out there to help others.
Another very interesting part of this book was the side story of Anki and Piet. Piet believed in following the laws of the land and never lying. This included doing whatever the Nazi's set as a law, and he would not lie to protect people who were breaking the Nazi's law. Piet believed that he was following God's commands. These wonderful moral dilemmas are discussed throughout the book. When is it okay to lie?
One of the most wonderful things about this book is the beautiful love story that develops between Cornelia and Gerrit. Cornelia lost her husband so tragically and believes she will never love another. When she begins to have feelings for Gerrit, the fact that he routinely puts his life in danger is very scary for her. She can't comprehend loving another man and then losing him. It is such a sweet love story.
I would recommend this book to those who are interested in a truly unique telling of a story from WWII, that is laced with a love story that will touch your heart.
Snow on the Tulips is a beautiful story, but it is very emotionally in depth. This book is definitely not for the light of heart, but when finishing it a reader can look back an be in awe of the people who inspired the actual characters written!
From the beginning I really felt I could relate to Cornelia with her wanting to stay safely tucked in her home and not acknowledging the fear that secretly gripped her heart. As she grew, healed, and let go throughout her journey she slowly became the woman God created her to be all along: Brave and courageous.
My favorite quote from this novel that really defines the overall growth of the characters (and the story as a whole) is "Courage is not a feeling. Courage is an action." Spoken from one of the main characters, it really shapes the whole story for Cornelia and the sweet victory she receives. To get there though, there is a lot of suspense and of course romance endeavors as well as some hard-headness that the reader has to go through first!
Overall, I really enjoyed this novel and was truly inspired. After closing the book I reflected on my own life and how fear is holding me back from living for God. I recommend Snow on the Tulips to anyone who is looking for a great historical novel that inspires the reader personally as well as entertain!
*I received this book for free from Litfuse in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review and all thoughts are my own.*
The Nazis still occupy part of the Netherlands, despite the fact that the war is almost over. Cornelia is a shadow her former self, and has come forth from the ashes a widow. Desperate to protect her brother, Johan, she is aghast when he brings home a Dutch Resistance member. Furious with her brother yet frightened by the implication of hiding Gerrit in her home; her faith gives her no choice but to harbor the wounded fugitive.
As Gerrit recovers in Cornelia's home, she can't help admiring him for his passion and what he stands for. She wants to be more like him; bold and unafraid to proclaim the truth. She wishes she had the courage to stand up for what is right, no matter what the consequences. So when opportunity to become part of the Resistance with Gerrit becomes a reality, will she have the courage to become the person she's always wanted to be? Will she ever get to live free and unafraid of the price it will cost?
This novel opened up a whole new side of World War I to me. I saw things in a new light, from a fresh perspective, all masterfully done by Tolsma. While most of us may never experience the political struggle and danger that the characters in the story did, we all fear something - whether we admit it or not. Tolsma carefully takes her story and weaves a tale that will work its way into your sub-conscience and will become part of the way you will forever view this war of the past. The romance between Gerritt and Cornelia will make you ache for all the people that are separated because of circumstances, other people, or fate itself.
This book was provided by the publisher through Litfuse Nest for free in exchange for an honest review.