The Hiding Place
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The Hiding Place

4.41 of 5 stars 4.41  ·  rating details  ·  114,364 ratings  ·  5,838 reviews
At one time Corrie ten Boom would have laughed at the Idea that there would ever be a story to tell. For the first fifty years of her life nothing at all out of the ordinary had ever happened to her. She was an old-maid watchmaker living contentedly with her spinster sister and their elderly father in the tiny Dutch house over their shop. Their uneventful days, as regulate...more
Paperback, 241 pages
Published October 1st 1984 by Bantam (first published January 1st 1971)
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Werner
May 25, 2008 Werner rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Any reader interested in the Holocaust, or in Christianity
Shelves: history, biography
When I was adding every book I could remember ever reading to my Goodreads shelves, I automatically slapped three-star ratings on all the nonfiction books (unless I'd disliked them, or they were specially influential for me) without thinking much about it; I'm more apt to reserve four or five star ratings for fiction --and I'm miserly with the five star ones! But this was a case where, when I sat down to do the review, I decided to change the rating. Corrie's personal narrative of her World War...more
Karen
By far one of the best and most inspirational books I've ever read. I've underlined so many parts of this book! I first read this with my first book club almost 10 years ago and read it back in October with my current book club -- still find it absolutely amazing and one I want to read and re-read.

One of my favorite themes of the book is stated by the author on page 31: "the experiences of our lives, when we let God use them, become the mysterious and perfect preparation for the work He will gi...more
Meg
Every human being should be required to read this book. I guarantee it will change forever the way you look at life.

The memoir is a true account of Corrie Ten Boom's experiences in German-occupied Holland during WWII (and afterward in prisons and concentration camps). The most amazing thing to me is that she was not Jewish. She was a Dutch Christian who freely sacrificed her own life, and the lives of those she loved most, to fight against cruelty and hate. I read the book aloud to my husband,...more
Liz
Sep 17, 2007 Liz rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone over age 15
I qualified the recommendation based on age because there are some difficult situations I think, for younger people. I have read many, many holocaust books, and this is by far my favorite. I wept and wept, not just for the suffering she endured, but mostly for the way in which she and her sister Betsie faced their suffering with such faith. For how they looked for opportunities to be selfless in a concentration camp, and how the women there were changed just by their example. I wept at my utter...more
Kelly Maybedog
What makes this particular book different from other (better) stories about the Holocaust is that it's from the perspective of a Christian woman who was interned. While it's extremely important for us not to forget that one group of people was specifically targeted (Jews) it's also important for us to realize that this horrible thing went beyond that. This horrible thing didn't just affect "them"/"those other people" (oh isn't that sad?, what's for dinner?") but it affected the whole world. But...more
Lisa (Harmonybites)
Mar 17, 2012 Lisa (Harmonybites) rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Those Interested in the Dutch Resistance or the Nazi Concentration Camps
Recommended to Lisa (Harmonybites) by: The Idiot's Guide to the Ultimate Reading List
This is the story of Corrie ten Boom, a self-described "spinster" watchmaker who lived with her father and sister and was pushing fifty when she became part of the Dutch Resistance helping to hide Jews from the Nazis. Eventually betrayed, she wound up in a Gestapo prison for a few months, then doing forced labor in the Vught Concentration Camp, which harsh as it was, was paradisaical compared to where she next wound up until released, the notorious Ravensbruck Concentration Camp. This is her fir...more
Jenny
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Annalisa
Oct 13, 2007 Annalisa rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Annalisa by: Amy Scott
If you have not read the book, it is the true account of a Dutch woman in her 50s who sets up an underground Jewish haven during the Nazi rule over Holland. I love reading about the Holocaust, but this was the first time I could sense such a chasm between a sweet, elderly, epitome-of-Christian woman and the cruel hatred of the Nazi camps.

Even before the war, the family's charity and service was inspiring. During the war, their optimism, stalwartness, and charity was amazing. Corrie would trust h...more
Melissa
This is a profound book, and one that will not leave you unmoved. I was even inspired to write a poem before I finished reading it:

Victory Song
by Melissa M.
May 16, 2010

Golden glimpses of the sun,
Bits of clouds between the bars.
Coughing blood, matted hair,
Questions, memories, leaving scars.

Making friends with tiny ants,
Spilling crumbs to bring them out.
Crossing days off on the wall,
Wondering what this is all about.

Planned by God, even this?
Yes, and rejoicing still,
Corrie ten Boom lying there,
Know...more
Kelley
This book is...how do you say it? If not life-changing, it at least affects your vision, the way you see things, for ever! I was so moved by the sweetness of each story, the love of each family member, the courage of so many. It certainly brought perspective to my own life. I also admired Corrie for being able to recognize the good things she had in her life and for her abilty to express that in writing.

I have not read any other hollocaust books on purpose. I have a very sensitive spirit and I'...more
Angela
Oct 13, 2008 Angela rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone,all ages
Recommended to Angela by: my grandmother
At the same time and in the same town that Anne Frank and her family were in hiding in the attic, Corrie Ten Boom and her family were hiding Jews and dying in a prison for their actions. In my opinion, Corrie ten Boom was possibly one of the most inspirational and wonderfully uplifting women who truly showed her Christian faith in the way of Jesus by sacrificing herself for "The Watches in the Closet". With humor and humility, Corrie tells of how she and her family joined the Dutch Resistance in...more
Kelli
I LOVE this book. I love Corrie's heart, I love her strength. I learned so much reading this book. It inspires one to want to be better. Her love for God was evident. She was an amazing writer of her own story. Definite read.
Rachel
What a fabulous book! This is the kind of book that changes the way that you see the world. It's given me so many things to think about.

Corrie and several members of her family are imprisoned in several different Nazi camps throughout the end of WWII for helping run the "underground" operation in Holland. The perspective that is offered throughout this book is absolutely incredible. I'll share with you just a couple of the things that stood out to me.

As a young woman, Corrie is totally and compl...more
Philip
In an abundance of Holocaust literature, (and media in general) this book takes a step forward and sets itself apart from the rest.

Corrie ten Boom narrates the story of WWII Holland. How the Dutch thought the war wouldn't come to them, but how quickly it came anyway and how the occupation changed everything. She describes her brother bringing home a beaten Jew on the evening of the family watch shop's 100th anniversary.

They open their home as the titled Hiding Place.


What strikes me is the resolv...more
Noel
Two stars. That's the best I can do on a book that came highly recommended and that I read with relish as I had just been to Amsterdam and surrounding areas, visited the Museum of the Resistance and the old Jewish Synagogue referred to in the book. So why two stars?

I just didn't believe a lot of what I read. Here's what I do believe. I think Corrie, her sister Betsy, her father and other family members were courageous, passionate, religious, pro-active and bold. They did what many in Holland di...more
Melodie Williams
I have read this book twice. My daughter Emily has read it at least four times. One day when she was about 14 I asked her why she loved this book so much. She said, "I want a life just like Corrie Ten Boom." I said in a searching surprised voice, "You want to be sent to a concentration camp?" She said, "No mom, duh, I want to be that kind of person. I want to have that kind of faith."

This is an amazingly inspiring book. I think often of the lessons I learned from it. Getting the ticket (of stren...more
Doug Cannon
If I were stranded on an Island and could take only 5 books, then this one would definitely be one of the 5.

This book was read to me in a class (probably when I was 9-10 years old) and I loved it then. I re-read it last year, and loved it far more.

Cory ten Boom does a tremendous job of telling her story, and teaching about Christ and human natures. Her basic principles that she discusses seem so correct, that I find many aspects of this book that I can use in my own life to improve myself.

Many t...more
Pete daPixie
'The Hiding Place' is the autobiographical memoir of Corrie ten Boom from 1971, that most of the world's population has heard of, or already read, except me. I came to this book in a rather meandering way. In April I visited Holland for the first time. Visiting Amsterdam to soak up the art museums and cultural sights of that city. Visiting Ann Frank's house too. One day I took the train out to Haarlem, primarily to see the Frans Hals museum. I stood in the Grote Markt, the large open medieval sq...more
Julie Davis
I'm rereading this for September's book discussion at A Good Story is Hard to Find podcast.

==============

This review originally appeared at my A Free Mind column at Patheos.
There is no pit so deep that God's love is not deeper still.
It is appropriate that during Lent, when the depth of God's love is the lesson made plain to us, The Hiding Place came to my attention; it contains vivid examples of God's deep love set in a story of man's inhumanity to man.

I read The Hiding Place in high school, so...more
Cindy
Apr 19, 2009 Cindy rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone feeling down
Reading this book, I had to ask myself, what is it that makes some people so much stronger than others? And I think that love is the answer. I just finished reading Man's Search for Meaning, and taken with that one, I found myself so impressed by the strength and faith of these people. I was just so inspired.

I love to read Corrie Ten Boom. She makes me feel like I can do more, I can be better. Another thing I noticed about this book and about Viktor Frankl's is that neither one of them spent muc...more
Tammy Walton Grant
I'd forgotten all about this book until I saw an update on GR today.

My church sent a busload of us to see the movie when it came out in 1975. I was 8 or 9 I think and the appeal was more the day trip to the big city with my friends and without my parents. It was my first introduction to the Holocaust - it disturbed me, made me terribly sad and frightened all at the same time. Thinking back I was probably too young to have seen it (but what the heck, I saw "Jaws" that year too.)

I read the book a...more
Danna
We've all grown up with the story of Anne Frank; while certainly moving and profound, it's good to be reminded that her experiences were not unique by exploring such memoirs as Corrie Ten Boom's. While reading through other Goodreads reviews, I came across one that I particularly appreciate and am thus quoting here: "Whenever I find myself involved in a tense discussion with fundamentalist atheists, and hear religion being blamed for every evil under the sun, I am always reminded of Corrie ten B...more
Elizabeth
Its not often that a book changes your life. This one will stay with me always. This is the story of an amazing woman and her family who helped hide Jews during the German occupation of Holland. Corrie and her family were eventually arrested and imprisoned. While she was in the camps, she recalls all the small and large miracles of the way God made Himself present. Corrie's father and sister, Betsie, died in the camps, but she was released and went on to devote her life to making real the vision...more
Megan
Amazing book. My book group read this awhile ago and I just got to it. Wish I would have read it sooner. Many books about WWII and the horrible things leave me just aching inside for the people. Although horrific things happened, this book left me feeling uplifted, which is what I am sure Corrie Ten Boom and her sister Betsie did in the camps. If I am ever in a difficult situation I hope to have someone like them be there. Better yet, maybe I can aspire to be like them. I found myself trying to...more
Jeanene
May 20, 2008 Jeanene rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone and everyone
Recommended to Jeanene by: my mother
This is a very inspiring true story. It is about the evolution of spiritual strength, faith, and endurance. It is about looking for God's tender mercies towards His children in the midst of unspeakable horror. I learned to count my blessings reading this book.
Chris
This is still one of the most recommendable books I know (that list is growing shorter). What about it isn’t inspiring? An old spinster and her quiet little Dutch family steeped in tradition become ground zero for the holocaust atrocities in old Haarlem, Holland; and the courage and love that radiated from their lives throughout the entire tragedy is almost enough to make the reader want to share in their agony for just a modicum of their unwavering confidence in a bigger plan. What would we giv...more
Chris
It would be fair to say that the most famous story of the Holocaust is the story of Anne Frank. Yet, in many ways, we are taught the incomplete story of the Frank family and thier hiding mates. While we know in great detail about the risk that the Frank helpers took by hiding and protecting their friends, the helpers seem to get short shift. While everyone knows of Miep, not that she seemed to have wanted it, many forget that Victor Kugler (Mr. Kraler in the diary) and Johannes Kleiman (Mr. Koop...more
Stephanie
This book was amazing! It took me a long time to get through it. Not because it was slow or hard to read but because I have crazy dreams when I am pregnant (I had weird/scary dreams when I was reading Goose Girl by Shannon Hale. That's how bad it is...), and I kept putting it off because I didn't want to dream I was in a concentration camp naked with mean guards hitting me with a shovel (I think I remember something like that in the movie, except she wasn't naked...). I was scared to keep going...more
Trish
I did not realize that I have read an excerpt from this book that was circulated via email. When I came to the spot, it was unmistakable and powerful.

The Ten Boom family was remarkable the way they read scriptures and prayed both night and day. They were religious about time, too. I can't imagine eating breakfast at exactly 8:10 am every morning. This spoke volumes to me about the pace of life back in the day. The father was endearing and I was impressed by the way he taught his daughter. In one...more
Rebecca
Sep 28, 2008 Rebecca rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
At no fault of the book, but it took me a while to get into this story. Once the occupation of Holland took place the story became riveting and I didn't put it down until I read through the last page. What a horrific setting, but nevertheless a beautiful true story of faith and even love through adversity. A friend suggested having tissue close by, and I agree, especially through the last few chapters.
One part that I'm sure was not a major point in the book, but that struck me was near the end w...more
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Corrie ten Boom and her family were Christians who were active in social work in their home town of Haarlem, the Netherlands. During the Nazi occupation, they chose to act out their faith through peaceful resistance to the Nazis by active participation in the Dutch underground. They were hiding, feeding and transporting Jews and underground members hunted by the Gestapo out of the country. It is e...more
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Tramp for the Lord In My Father's House Corrie Ten Boom's Prison Letters Amazing Love: True Stories of the Power of Forgiveness A Prisoner and Yet

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“This is what the past is for! Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.” 804 likes
“Do you know what hurts so very much? It's love. Love is the strongest force in the world, and when it is blocked that means pain. There are two things we can do when this happens. We can kill that love so that it stops hurting. But then of course part of us dies, too. Or we can ask God to open up another route for that love to travel.” 415 likes
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