Friday, August 9, 2013

Snow on the Tulips By Liz Tolsma Book Review

Snow on the Tulips// Snow on the Tulips //
By Liz Tolsma
{Review By Bethany}

Title: Snow on the Tulips
Author: Liz Tolsma
Source: Review Book from BookSneeze
Number of Pages: 336
Publisher: Thomas Nelson Publishers
Publication Date: August, 2013
Bethany's Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

// Book Synopsis //

"In a time of unprecedented darkness and fear, Cornelia must decide if saving a stranger’s life is worth risking her own.

In the twilight of the Nazi occupation of The Netherlands, the Germans have taken everything Cornelia had to give, even what was most precious to her. Now Gerrit Laninga—a man who puts God and country above all else—arrives at her house, needing help. She is terrified for herself and terrified for her family, but most of all, terrified of the pain she might feel again if she allows herself to love Gerrit. Her hope is to be free from her paralyzing fear.

Gerrit is a known and hunted Dutch Resistance member. When he comes to Cornelia’s home for shelter, he’s drawn to her strength and kindness. When he asks her to contact the local Resistance on his behalf, she refuses. Gerrit is determined to find a way to continue his underground work without putting Cornelia or her family in harm’s way.

When things start to unravel and Gerrit’s life depends on her actions, she must summon her courage and learn to depend on the perfect love that drives out all fear. But will her new love be snatched away before it has a chance to bloom?

// Bethany's Book Review //
A captivating story set in the World War II full of adventure, danger, faith and love all in this exciting debut novel from author Liz Tolsma that will keep you turning pages and wanting more!
So, I am sitting here, wondering how I could possibly write a review that does this book justice, and convinces you that you just positively must read it very soon if you are a historical fiction/WWII fan. I've been blown away by this novel! This being Liz's debut novel, I wasn't sure what to expect, but since it looked interesting, and because I've been interested in reading more WWII fiction, I decided to give it a try. Boy am I glad I did! Otherwise I'd have been missing out on one of the top favorite books on my favorite reads of 2013 list!
Where to begin? Ah! There was literally nothing I didn't like about this book. Then it had everything I ever could asked for in a novel, and then some, I just loved every aspect of it! There were so many things I loved about this novel, including how big a part of faith and Christianity was to the characters, how much history was involved (It was based on a true story! How cool is that?!), all the words that were in three different languages to give you a taste of the culture (The glossary at the front of the book was super helpful in this area!), how wonderfully it was written, how the character development was superb, just everything!
So let's start with the characters. I loved all of them, and like I mentioned earlier, the character development throughout the story was just spectacular. I loved seeing them grow both physically, but more importantly spiritually and found it a delight to read. I really enjoyed getting a in depth look at what it was like for a young woman trying to survive a war, and really opened my eyes to a lot of things about war that I'd never thought about and made me feel for the characters and connect with the story.
Another thing I mentioned earlier that I really admired and appreciated in this novel was how big the aspect of faith and trust were to the characters in this book. Several times throughout the story the authors would quote memorized Scripture, pray, or encourage the other to keep going through Christ-like encouragement. I really admire it when authors make Christ a strong foundation for the characters, because it adds depth to the story. It's not just about them. It's about God, which to me is an enormous plus in a novel.
I also loved how much history was involved with this story. It's based on a true story of Liz's relative, and there was so much information on the war and even included lots of words in three different languages which you could translate through the glossary in the front of the book. I loved this because you feel like you are really there immersed in the time period and it left me with a greater knowledge of this world war.
So when I started this book, by the first couple pages I was literally hooked. It started with such action as a young Resistance workers are literally walking escorted by German soldiers - to their death. These young men are lined up and shot for punishment of working with the Resistance workers again the Germans. After being lined up and shot, and left for dead, one of the men shot fakes his death and escaped later with his life, though suffering a nasty and dangerous wound that needs immediate attention all because his executer missed his target. So as you can probably tell, it's the kind of story that just races with excitement and pulls you in from the very beginning with dangerous excitement! And that's just the beginning! It gets better and better with each chapter and is for sure a thrilling page turning heart racer! Towards the end of the story, it had gradually built up suspense with each page, and the ending was just spectacular!
Overall, I was just blown away by this novel and simply cannot wait for more of Liz's books! I would highly recommend this book to any historical fiction or WWII lover, and cannot stress how much I enjoyed this story! It's for sure a favorite of 2013 and a definite re-read! 
N o t e :: I would like to sincerely thank Thomas Nelson publishers for providing me with a complementary copy of Snow on the Tulips to read and review through I was not paid to write this review, and all thoughts expressed are completely my own, honest and unbiased.

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