Tuesday, May 05, 2009

The Lonely Sentinel

The Lonely Sentinel, by Piet Prins
The Shadow Series, volume 1
(Inheritance Publications, 2006), pb., 140 pp.
Ages 6+

Since we had previously enjoyed the Struggle for Freedom series by Prins, I eagerly anticipated this book as well. This book is set in the Netherlands during World War II following the efforts of the Dutch resistance. The main characters are the Mulders family, particularly Frans (a sixth grader) and Dirk (a fourth grader). Their father runs a mill with the help of their older brother Dries. The family stumbles into the work of the Dutch resistance and begins helping Jews and others escape the Nazis. Eventually Dries also engages in a raid with other members of the resistance.

The action and suspense is seen primarily from the perspective of the young boys, which makes it all the more appealing to my young boys! It also helps the reader to enter into the risk of helping people in need during this time. It is easy to sense that it would be right to help. It is more helpful to also feel how challenging this must have been knowing you were risking not only your own life, but those of your family as well.

This book shares the same strengths as the other books from Prins which we have read. The Christian faith of the characters is real and integral to their lives (not some occasional “add on”). Also there is good adventure and suspense. It also shares some of the weaknesses of the other books. It is clearly a translation and at places the wording is awkward. At other times the wording is unclear. For example the people fleeing the Nazis are repeatedly referred to as “divers” but I have no idea why.

In the end this is a good book to read while studying World War II. It is good to hear about the event from a perspective outside the US; there is good adventure; and Christian faith features well.



At 9:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

One of the riskiest activities was hiding and sheltering refugees and enemies of the Nazi regime, Jewish families like the family of Anne Frank, underground operatives, draft-age Dutch, and others. Collectively these people were known as onderduikers ("people in hiding" or literally: "under-divers"). Later in the war this system of hiding people was used to protect downed Allied airmen. Corrie ten Boom and her family are among those who successfully hid several Jews and resistance workers from the Nazis




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