THE ANGEL OF AMSTERDAM, set in Nazi-occupied Holland, is a story of betrayal and honor, of diamonds and deceit; of a young Jew finding revenge with the help of a German colonel; of a fishmonger who buys time by selling souls including his own; and of a life which two people never expected to find in the midst of a land of death.
This book could be a really good story. However it is let down by weak parts yet the end result is that you feel that you have read a memorable work of fiction. It is the story of the harrowing times of a Jewish young man David Stein and how he overcomes being hidden from the Germans, how he is betrayed and then thinks he is coming to England only to be sent finally to Belsen with all its horrors. He survives Belsen and is sent to stay with the Gruder family in Celle after the war as he has TB. They have lost their own two sons in Russia and at first are not very welcoming towards David but we learn how this evolves and it is a very touching part of the book. Interwoven in this is the story of Joachim Strauss the Colonel in charge of finding Jews for the Labour camps from Amsterdam, and a Dutch jewish sailor who double crosses Strauss. To give much more of the story away would in my opinion spoil it for the reader of this review, The one thing that really bugged me throughout this book is that the people from Holland speak Dutch they DO NO speak Hollands, this was almost on every page at the beginning and I have to say spoilt the storyline. I was sorry the ending did not finish better unless the author is planning to write a sequel. It is left with David perhaps going to settle in Palestine but before that he is to go to London to try and find the widow of someone he met in Belsen. I do not think you will be disappointed if you buy this book just be prepared for a lot of simple grammatical errors and not very good translation.
This book, despite some historic errors and awkward terminology ie, speaking Hollands instead of Dutch this book provides the reader with a good read. The plot was good and the characterisations were pithy and realistic. I have no isssues with the actual content of the book and the typos, while mildly irritating, certainly did not spoil my enjoyment. I found the story quite compelling and the tension worked throughout. I would have no doubt in recommending this book to anyone with an interest in this particular genre.
this book has the potential to be really good, but is let down by silly mistakes. Bad Dutch, constantly refered to as "Hollands", and incorrect facts and dates. For example: Hitler did not invade Sweden!