Author: Lauraless Bliss
Genre: Historical Fiction
Series: Heroines of WWII
Release Date: August 29, 2022
A University Student Smuggles Children Out of Amsterdam
Full of intrigue, adventure, and romance, this series celebrates the unsung heroes—the heroines of WWII.
Helen Smit believed she was called by God to become a teacher. Little does she know that her care for kids will take a drastic turn for survival when the Germans occupy Amsterdam and Jewish children and parents begin to be deported. Now all she can think of is helping all the kids escape before it’s too late.
Erik Misman’s newfound love for Helen is tested when he joins a plot to help move Jewish children to a safe place in the countryside. If danger can foster a closer bond with Helen and save the lives of the little ones, he will do it all. But a German patrol that stumbles upon the farm where they are hiding with three children and a soldier who takes an unexpected interest in Helen, could well destroy their plans for safety and love.
Reviewer: Paula Shreckhise
"War makes everyone old. No one can be young when the enemy is here. We must all fight to survive or live a life of nothing, run by the powerful who don’t care if we live or die."
This one had a slow start for me and much of it was gloomy because it dealt with the German occupation during WWII. The hero was wise and godly beyond his years.
"When fear becomes normal behavior, thoughts and feelings conform to it. Complacency takes its place. And then the enemy can strike with something bolder, a new edict or punishment, to strengthen the prison walls."
The heroine had a heart for the persecuted, especially the children. Together, they put their romance on hold in order to rescue three children.
This story depicts a sad and horrific time in history and pays tribute to those who risked their lives to save others. While some of the actions by one character was unrealistic, the story did stress reliance on God during trying times. I am glad that authors are still writing about the war and its effect on people. I think we should not forget, lest something like this happens again.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour. I was not required to give a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
Reviewer: Laura J. Davis
Escape from Amsterdam by Lauralee Bliss is an interesting tale about the horrors of war and the heroes who stand against tyranny.
We meet Helen Smit, who believes she has been called by God to be a teacher. But what God actually calls her to do will test her faith more than she could imagine. Fortunately, she has the love of a good Christian man, Erik Misman, to help her carry out what she feels God has asked her to do - hide some Jewish children from the Germans who have occupied their country.
The cover and the story compelled me to read this book. Also, knowing that Canada supplied the most soldiers for the liberation of Amsterdam had me wondering if they would be mentioned in the book. Sadly, they were not. But that didn't distract from the story or the danger the characters faced. Their escape from Amsterdam was very well-written, leaving this reader pondering the fates of those who (in real life) didn't escape.
While the author aptly described the terrors of the time, the characters in this book could have been more fleshed out. I found them to be one-dimensional. I appreciated the faith element, but in my opinion, it was over the top. People don't go around spouting Scripture at others every chance they get. It isn't realistic. Also, the lack of trust Helen and Erik had in each other seemed out of step with their Christian walk. There were many times when I was confused by their reactions to certain events. For example, they had a plan to explain who the children were should they run into any Germans. But it is never used, and instead, Helen goes entirely off the rails and does something no rational human being would ever do. It did not sit well with me at all.
All that aside, the story is compelling, and it will keep you reading. If you enjoy WWII stories, you will probably like Escape from Amsterdam.
I received a review copy from Barbour Publishing through NetGalley for my honest opinion.
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