19 May 2014

Snow on the Tulips by Liz Tolsma

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A stranger’s life hangs in the balance. But to save him is to risk everything.

The war is drawing to a close, but the Nazis still occupy part of the Netherlands. After the losses she’s endured, war widow Cornelia is only a shadow of the woman she once was. She fights now to protect her younger brother, Johan, who lives in hiding.

When Johan brings Gerrit Laninga, a wounded Dutch Resistance member, to Cornelia’s doorstep, their lives are forever altered. Although scared of the consequences of harboring a wanted man, Cornelia’s faith won’t let her turn him out.

As she nurses Gerrit back to health, she is drawn to his fierce passion and ideals, and notices a shift within herself. Gerrit’s intensity challenges her, making her want to live fully, despite the fear that constrains her. When the opportunity to join him in the Resistance presents itself, Cornelia must summon every ounce of courage imaginable.

She is as terrified of loving Gerrit as she is of losing him. But as the winter landscape thaws, so too does her heart. Will she get a second chance at true love? She fears their story will end before it even begins.

Just when I thought I had read enough fictional books about World War II, I found myself picking up Liz Tolsma’s Snow on the Tulips. Recently I read Tolsma’s newer Daisies Are Forever, which left me wanting to read more of her work, so I suppose it was bound to happen eventually. But I am definitely glad I took this opportunity to read Snow on the Tulips now – Liz Tolsma delighted me once again with an aspect of the horrific war I had not previously known. Her story engages the experience in the Netherlands towards the end of its Nazi occupation and the Dutch Resistance that sought its survival and freedom. At the end, she includes – like in Daisies Are Forever – “The Story Behind the Story,” which shocked me as I realized the actual experiences serving as the basis for several of the novel’s scenarios. Incredible. Tolsma beautifully weaves the history within the fiction, telling a fantastic story of loss and love. I would definitely recommend this novel along with Daisies Are Forever to any historical fiction lovers, and I thank Thomas Nelson and NetGalley for providing me with a digital copy of this novel and the opportunity to review it honestly. 

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