Full disclosure: Devin is a friend of mine. When I found out he was going to have his debut published, I was beyond excited for him. He promised me an early copy, and I was thrilled to receive it. I even got choked up reading the acknowledgements because most were such close friends. But then I had a thought: What if I hated it? How would I tell him? So I left it to sit on my nightstand, where day in and day out I looked at it, afraid to pick it up.
But then my mom asked if she could read it. And my husband. So of course I had to read it before they did, so I finally started, and boy, am I glad I did.
I guarantee this is a WWII story you haven’t read before. It introduces Jacob Koopman, a teenager living in a small Dutch town with his older brother, Edwin, and his parents. His father owns a lightbulb factory and in an attempt to secure more business, he decides (without his wife’s permission) to send the boys to a German youth camp just as Hitler and the Nazis are coming into power. Jacob’s story is followed through the war as he grapples with which side is doing the right thing and how far he will go to protect his loved ones.
It is obvious to see the amount of research that went into this book. I quickly formed an emotional connection with Jacob and could sympathize with his plight. It’s hard enough to be a teenager. But just try to deal with that as war is breaking out. I believe he tried to see the good in everyone, even those who we would now call “enemies” in our history books.
If you ever get the chance to meet Devin, at an event or book signing, please go. Aside from the fact that he’s the nicest person ever, you’ll be fascinated by his family history and his past that all shaped this story.
Thanks to Devin, I have 2 signed copies to give away to lucky readers. U.S. only, please. Enter on the Rafflecopter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway