Gripping from the very first sentence. There are heart-in-your-throat scenes that will leave you gasping for breath. The brutality of war -- the senseless slaughter of humanity -- all play a role as this story unfolds.
Life is fraught with danger and uncertainty during wartime and no one knows that better than Cornelia. Something died inside her the day her husband was killed by German soldiers. It's all she can do to go through the motions of living. Trying to control what is left of her shattered life, she retreats, willing to wait until the end of the war before she starts to live again. And then her brother brings home a wounded Resistance fighter.
Gerrit is motivated by a deep sense of duty and justice. A risk-taker, willing to do whatever he can to fight for his country. Recovering from a bullet wound keeps him trapped in Cornelia's home and the two are thrown together in tight quarters where their opposing views act like tinder to a flame. Yet as they battle, something else ignites -- the kind of deep feelings that are dangerous to nurture during wartime.
I love how they both grow from the challenge of their relationship. Gerrit softens a bit, leans more deeply into his faith. Cornelia struggles with her fear and I truly appreciate this part of the story. So often we read about larger than life characters who seem to be born heroes. Cornelia is just plain scared and yet she is willing to follow where her faith leads.
I couldn't put it down. Finished it really fast. I would recommend it. It is as if your living the story with the characters and I feel like I've learned more of that time period and the hardships that people endured.
Love the title and cover. The story was interesting especially since my parents lived not far from this area and experienced the war while in their early to middle twenties. Thus many of their stories, which are being told more frequently now, are similar to the experiences related in the book. Just one point that will be picked up by Canadian readers,the flag the Canadian soldiers had with them was the red ensign with a Union Jack in the corner. Our maple leaf flag became our official flag in 1965.
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.