I think both Hans Poley's book and the account by Corrie ten Boom as told by the Sherrills were fascinating. Since the Poley book was published almost twenty years after the Sherrill book, and since Poley knew about that book as well as earlier accounts in Dutch by Corrie concerning the same period of time, I am surprised that Poley did not notice the difference between her facts and his in cases when he was not actually present during an event and relied on the stories of others. He should have had ample opportunity to compare the account before his book was published in the U.S.
Poley is an excellent writer, as are the Sherrills, and both books are engrossing. Poley covers items from the point of a young man in the Netherlands and the impact of the war on him and his age group as well as his fears for his fiance. It is helpful to have the concerns of both the young, shown by Poley, and the older generations, represented by Corrie and her father.
The Poley book, at the end of it, tries to fill in on what happened later to the chief people involved in the hiding place. The name of his editor for the English edition is listed on the title page, and I really must fault this editor. That man should have picked up on the inconsistencies.
For example, the Sherrill account had the sense to call Corrie ten Boom "Corrie" (since she was so well known to people by that name all over the world). Poley insisted on calling her Tante (Aunt) Kees, which those in hiding did out of respect when they were hiding in her house. Poley refers to Corrie's sister Betsie as Tante Bep. Neither of these names give a clue as to who is Corrie and who is Betsie. I was reading this to an almost blind lady and had all kinds of problems with the Tante names as I tried to use at least "Corrie" instead of Tante Kees. Because of the popular movie about the ten Boom experience, many know at least Corrie by name. In the last chapter Poley finally tells us who Tante Kees was, but by that time it is too late, and instead of putting one of her names in parentheses right after the other one, he separated them with commas, which gives the impression that he is talking about two individuals, not one. It is an editor's job to make a book as understandable as possible to the reader, but this editor failed at some critical spots.
Another instance of this is that although Poley was not there when the ten Boom house was raided by the Gestapo and tells us he got his information from reliable sources, he didn't compare his account with Corrie's, or if he did, he neglected to tell us that Corrie's version was different. He says that Corrie was in bed in her underwear when the Gestapo burst into her room. He leaves the matter there and next tells of her being forced down the stairs to a lower floor in front of others in the house. The reader, of course, wonders if Corrie was still in her underwear, and after grueling hours there, she and the others were taken to the German police station. Was she still in her underwear? I was so concerned about this that I re-read the Sherrill book where Corrie tells her own version of it: that she was in her pajamas in bed. The Gestapo agent forced her, sick as she was, to get up and dress herself. She says she put her regular clothes on over her pajamas. Little discrepancies like this, as reported by Poley when he wasn't on the scene, are annoying and unnecessary. A good editor should have caught that and fixed it.
Still and all, Poley has some unique contributions to make to the entire story. He is the one who fleshes out the others in hiding by describing them in great detail. Corrie didn't seem much concerned about that. She simply named most of them, giving very few details about them. In fact, she doesn't even mention Hans Poley.
Poley's very different experience than Corrie's in a German-run prison was an eye-opener. His emotional reactions to being caught by the Gestapo while warning a man in the Underground, his fear at the police station yet the way he handled things very well there and stuck to his fabricated story, as well as his sharing with the reader the various ways the population of the Netherlands struggled to return to a pre-war set of ethics after the war (they had to lie and steal in their Underground fight against the Nazis) gives us a good idea of how the populace in general had a hard time returning to normal. Poley shares with us,too, the very natural labeling by most Netherlanders of the Germans. Poley says he himself did this until a few experiences taught him to respect certain German individuals as he encountered them in post-war experiences. He admits that he has not been able to forgive the German people as a whole. Corrie's prime interest was living the Christian life and sharing the gospel when incarcerated, and yet Poley's observations help us to see what the everyday citizens went through, both before and after the German occupation.
Read both books and you will get a well-rounded picture of what went on in the lives of the people who were trapped for five years in their own country by those who followed Hitler's orders.