Monday, August 4, 2008

The Occupied Garden

The Occupied Garden: Recovering the Story of a Family in the War-Torn Netherlands by Karen Den Hartog and Tracy Kasaboski is a compelling read filled with both tragedy and hope. Written by sisters Karen and Tracy, this book details the Den Hartog family life commencing immediately prior to the start of World War II and throughout the occupation of the Netherlands by the Nazis. The book opens with the marriage of their grandparents,Cor and Gerrit den Hartog and their establishing a home and market garden.

The Occupied Garden tells the story of Cor and Gerrit as they struggle to raise their young family amid the Nazi occupation and pillage of the Netherlands. Cor, deeply devout tries to understand why God would allow such suffering. Other members of the family are also affected, each in their own way, despite Cor and Gerrit's attempts to protect them.

An unexpected tragedy, the family's resilience in the face of their own and their neighbour's terrible suffering make this story both poignant and tragic. The authors also tell the story of the Dutch Royal Family's sufferings during this time.

Book Details:
The Occupied Garden: Recovering the story of a family in the wartorn Netherlands
by Kristen Den Hartog and Tracy Kasaboski
Toronto: McCelland & Stewart 2008

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