The Dutch Wife

The Dutch Wife

Book - 2018
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"Amsterdam, May 1943. As the tulips bloom and the Nazis tighten their grip across the city, the last signs of Dutch resistance are being swept away. Marijke de Graaf and her husband are arrested and deported to different concentration camps in Germany. Marijke is given a terrible choice: to suffer a slow death in the labor camp or--for a chance at survival--to join the camp brothel. On the other side of the barbed wire, SS officer Karl MYller arrives at the camp hoping to live up to his father's expectations of wartime glory. But faced with a brutal routine of overseeing executions and punishments, he longs for an escape. When he encounters the newly arrived Marijke, this meeting changes their lives forever"--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Toronto, Ontario : Park Row Books, [2018]
ISBN: 9780778369769
Characteristics: 339 pages ; 23 cm


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Feb 10, 2020

Never read it

Two strong themes but it would have been easier to parse Karl’s reckoning if the novel had been written in two parts. I would recommend skipping through the chapters, first reading only the story of the characters in 1943 then returning to read the story of the young man in 1977. Argentina did not prove to be such a safe haven for Nazis and their (innocent) progeny.
This is Keith's first novel. She did the research and I anticipate that her writing will become stronger in subsequent works.

Sep 07, 2019

A fair historical fiction. I enjoyed the multiple prescriptive from the three main characters and the duel timelines: Buchenwald, 1940's and Buenos Aires, late 1970's. Though I do appreciate the parallels the author drew from these two different points of time (imprisonment, war time, deplorable governments), I thought the book fell short on detail.

Sep 04, 2019

Informative and told from the woman's view mostly.
The ending left me wondering if I missed something about what was discovered
and if it led to the last killing.

Jul 29, 2019

A grim but well written historical fiction about the war & imprisonment & how people survive the horror. Recommended for readers of All the Light We Cannot See or The Alice Network.

BPLpicks Jun 20, 2019

Examined. Assessed. Tagged. Sorted. Marijke de Graaf is Inmate 21522 at Ravensbruck camp compound as a political prisoner. She is surrounded by people dying from typhus, overwork, starvation and mental instability and vows she'll do whatever is necessary to survive the war. Given the choice to enjoy fresh food, a room with a proper bed, running water, earning money or certain death Marijke accepts an offer to become a prostitute at the men's camp in Buchenwald. My interest was piqued from the first line. As each paragraph and chapter progressed I became more engaged and enraged with the lives these unfortunate souls were forced to live. Recommended for those readers of All the Light We Cannot See, Sarah's Key or The Alice Network.

Jun 19, 2019

DNF @ 19%
2018; Patrick Crean Edition/Harper Collins
(Review Not on Blog)

I am sucker for covers like this, and I may have not read the entire synopsis before requesting this book. I started to read the book, and made it through several pages in and put it down. Two weeks later, I remembered I had started this book and picked it back up. Ugh, I forgot what happened so started again. I could not get much further again so I gave up on reading, but then decided to try the audiobook. My audiobook came in before Christmas and I wanted something quicker so put it off till I had 5 days left on my loan. I made it through 19% and I'm calling it. This year my goal is not to force myself to read books I am not enjoying. This book has mixed reviews so take a look at what others have said before making your decision!

***I received an eARC from EDELWEISS***

May 10, 2019

This was a really good read. The characters were fictionalized but based on historical events which at times were difficult to get through. A story about choices one might make in order to survive.

Jan 11, 2019

A well-written story about persecution, hard choices, and survival during times of war. The tale of the Dutch wife and the Nazi officer is skillfully alternated with the interconnected tragic story of a young man living in Argentina during the brutal 1970’s Argentine “Dirty War”. The author gives great insight into the motivations of her characters, while telling her version of lesser known facts about these two terrible wars.

Oct 30, 2018

This is a must read for those who enjoy fiction with a dose of historical reality. The subject matter is grim (how can a forced labour camp be considered "enjoyable read") but the personalities of the characters are compelling. I could not put this book down.

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