Hidden Like Ann Frank
“What followed was years of tears. A whole lifetime. That war will not be over until I take my last breath.” Hidden Like Anne Frank is an non-fiction book written by different survivors that went into hiding during WWII and the editors are Marcel Prins and Peter Henk Steenhuis. It takes place in the Netherlands where an impressive amount of Jews were hidden, considering that it is such a small country. Hidden Like Anne Frank includes fourteen fascinating and heartbreaking stories of survival during the Holocaust which lasted from 1933-1945. It was more than ten years of haunting events for everyone, mainly the Jewish population in Europe.
One of the recurring themes in Hidden Like Anne Frank is trust. Throughout the stories, the characters are forced to entrust their lives to someone else. However, some of the characters encountered someone that they couldn’t trust and that betrayed them by turning them into the nazis. The writing style of Hidden Like Anne Frank is an anthology. An anthology is a book written and published by numerous authors. There are fourteen books written by fourteen different authors that wrote the story of their experience surviving the holocaust in hiding.
My personal favorite story from Hidden Like Anne Frank is called Years of Tears. It is by Donald De Marcas who was born on June 29, 1933 in Leiden, Netherlands. The books starts off with Donald explaining how great and comfortable his young childhood was in a “too good to be true” way that expresses a mood that something terrible will happen. Donald’s experience in the war consisted of escaping a train going to a concentration camp, going into hiding many different times, changing his hair color to look more German and less Jewish, and being separated from his family at the age of ten. His favorite hiding spot house was the Marijnissen’s house. There, he was told to pretend to be a visiting relative and to never talk about where he was really from. In addition, Donald had to complete chores everyday such as walking a mile to deliver milk jugs and picking grass for the rabbits. He slept in a badly lighted attic, locked away from the rest of the house. However, the owners of the house, Net and Toon, thought it would be safer if Donald moved to a different location after ten months of staying with them. Throughout the time of Donald hiding in a couple houses and orphanages, he was lucky enough to never encounter a Nazi or be found. In mid June 1945, Donald was reunited with his parents. It was difficult for him to recreate his relationship with them, especially his mother, because he had been responsible for himself for too long with no parents to guide him. He said, “The war destroyed the mother I had known.”
Hidden Like Anne Frank grabbed my attention from page 1 to 211 with it’s page turning suspense. I would generally recommend this book for anyone who has an interest for the Holocaust or enjoys reading non-fiction books. It taught me on a more personal level, what people really went through and how they managed to survive.