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3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  328 ratings  ·  91 reviews
“People who don’t have secrets imagine them as dark and hidden. It’s just the opposite. Secrets are bright. They light you up. Like the bare lightbulb left on in a cell day and night, they give you no rest.”
So thinks Joop, the narrator of this brief and bitter tale, whose secret is like no other. He has kept that secret for more than sixty years, but now his brother---whom
Paperback, 192 pages
Published October 14th 2008 by St. Martin's Press (first published January 1st 2005)
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The author of this book, Richard Lourie, who is an old family friend, is best known for his impressive connections with Russia, but obviously he has also been involved with international issues. He has written numerous books, both fiction and non-fiction.

The title of this novel refers to the “starvation diet” which developed during WW ll in Holland. The crux of the tale is the overwhelming hunger and starvation among the populace, especially one family. It influenced their every thought and acti
A Hatred For Tulips, September 1, 2007
By gerryb (Cambridge, MA USA) - See all my reviews

If Breughel were a minimalist 21st century writer this might have been one of his books. It an easy and pleasurable read, almost casual in style, bit rich in incidental detail. The profoundly horrific dilemmas of being human that it deals with emerge stealthily but potently. It turns out Anne Frank's probable betrayer was not particularly monstrous but a confused and impressionable kid named Joop from a hungr
This is a holocaust story told from the perspective of Joop, who as a teenager was involved in the betrayal of Anne Frank in Amsterdam. It is sixty years later and Joop shares his tormenting secret with his visiting younger brother, the surviving half of the twins who were babies during the Nazi occupation in Holland. There is much here: guilt, sibling jealousy, Joop's need of recognition and love from his dying father, his willingness to do whatever to help support his family survive, and natio ...more
Tara Lynn
I think I was expecting a little more from this novel, which is uspposed to be a fictionalized account of Joop, the boy/man who may have betrayed Anne Frank and her family to the Nazis at the end of WWII. Although the story moved quickly, and was written in a way that made you feel as though you were a part of the picture, I felt that Joop's ideas and thoughts as a boy could have been conveyed a little better. his motives seem so very two-dimensional, and sometimes it can be hard to empathize wi ...more
"People who don’t have secrets imagine them as dark and hidden. It’s just the opposite. Secrets are bright. They light you up. Like the bare lightbulb left on in a cell day and night, they give you no rest.”

This book starts with Joop visiting his brother William, confessing the crime he carried on his shoulders and was now sagged with guilt. He shares how this guilt
Never let him have a normal life. Picturing himself as a victim as well, he talks about the life he lived or rather suffered. Whic
OH MY! I ADORED this book. What an amazing tie in to Anne Frank. Gave me the chills!
This is a short book, but one that has sat on my shelves to read for over a year. For some reason it never called to me when selecting my next read. For such a short book it really brings a powerful punch in the deep thoughts category. While most of the story is not directly about Anne Frank and her family’s capture, the story is still relevant to that topic.

This is a fictional tale, but one that provides such a similar perspective to Anne’s diary it could almost be read along side her words. Th
People who don’t have secrets imagine them as dark and hidden. It’s just the opposite. Secrets are bright. They light you up. Like the bare lightbulb left on in a cell day and night, they give you no rest.” So thinks Joop, the narrator of this brief and bitter tale, whose secret is like no other. He has kept that secret for more than sixty years, but now his brother---whom he has not seen since the end of the war---has suddenly shown up at his door.
Having grown up in North America with only the
Kristin Runyon
I usually prefer nonfiction accounts of WWII and the Holocaust. I don't think it is necessary to fictionalize an historical event that has so many primary sources available. The premise of this book is to tell the story of the thief who turned in the Frank family, hence the subtitle A Novel of Anne Frank. The tie to Anne Frank does not occur until the very end of the book (although the setup is provided in the first chapter). The novel is well written and provided an insight to WWII that I was n ...more
I wish the writer would have given more details, the voice told the story, didn't show it. I was in Amsterdam, saw Anne Frank's house, and would have enjoyed a book 3x the size it was. (only 185 pgs). Great story, just wish there was more.

(copied review) "'I am your brother,' said the stranger at the door." So begins the tale of an elderly man named Joop who, in present-day Amsterdam, describes his efforts as a young man to feed his starving family during the WWII Nazi occupation. So desperate
Great story -- it read like nonfiction! It all starts when a stranger knocks on Joop's door in Amsterdam 60+ years after the end of WWII and says that he is his brother, Willem. He has come to discover what his life was like as a child in Holland during the war.

At the end of the war, Joop and Willem's mother took Willem and left Joop and his father for a Canadian officer and moved to North America. Bitter, Joop begins to tell Willem about their life during the war . . . Joop asks Willem if he kn
An interesting take on the story of Anne Frank, from the perspective of the man (or child) who betrayed her family to the Nazis.

It brings up many ethical questions which could only be resolved with grey and very shaky, dubious answers. What would one do if the choice was watch your 4 year-old brother and sick father starve to death or betray what you perceive to be "rich Jews," living in a higher manner than you with food on their plates (peas, potatoes, and strawberries as opposed to boiled tul
In Amsterdam, Joop is unexpectedly visited by his younger brother, who lived most of his life in North America with their mother. The siblings have not seen each other for about sixty years. Joop proceeds to share his remembrances of living under the Nazi occupation. We learn how his struggles to help his family survive (including eating tulip bulbs) ultimately lead him to be the informant who revealed the hiding place of Anne Frank and her family, although he did not realize it until years late ...more
Charmaine Anderson

Recently I ran across a clipping from the Deseret News about this book and decided to send for it since Masterpiece Theatre is going to do Anne Frank's story this year and our book club is picking books soon. This isn't a story of Anne Frank perse'. It is told by an old man recounting the horrors of the German Occupation of Amsterdam during WWII when he was a boy. Who was Anne Frank's betrayer? Can hunger cancel out compassion? This book is a fascinating look at an adolecents desire to understan
Laura Brown
A story about an elderly Dutch man's memories of World War II and what it took to survive the war. He tells his story to his brother; raised in America by their mother. I have never read anything by this author, but I was very quickly pulled into the story. I haven't read much about WWII in Holland. Very interesting book.
Randomnly picked this up at the library - the cover intrigued me. Started it last night and am caught up in the story right away - Netherlands, WWII - haven't heard a story from that perspective recently.

Decent read - fictional account of the person who turned in the Frank family. The individual was the oldest son of a family who was doing all he could to take care of his family since his father became very ill. You can so easily relate to a boy on the brink of losing everything unless he can f
Barbara Drinkwater
I felt this was an excellently written book during the period of the Holocaust and certainly gave me some things to think gave me a whole new perspective, not necessarily new but more views.

I think anyone who has read "The Diary if 'Anne Frank" should read this book. I think you would enjoy it.
This is a pretty good historical fiction book about the young man who turned in Anne Frank and her family. As I read it, I could feel the desperation that would lead someone to do something so drastic and terrible. I found the story very believable and I couldn't put it down.
Joop is an elderly man, living alone in Amsterdam. Sixty years have passed since he has seen his younger brother Willem, who is now knocking on the apartment door. In the days of World War II, Joop’s mother abandoned the family for America, taking young Willem with her. Willem has returned, hoping to visit with his brother and learn of his childhood. Joop opens the door and the tension between him and Willem is undeniable. For Willem, things may have been better off leaving things unsaid. The re ...more
A Holocaust book focused on the man that (fictionally?) turned the Frank family in. Also published as Joop: A Novel of Anne Frankl
This book went by too fast and didn't develop relationships enough to entice me. I thought the father / son relationship, specifically, should have been more though. I was also a bit frightened by the rage the narrator expresses toward Anne Frank. "What's so great about her book? I don't see it. A moody teenager, boy-crazy, she hates her mother, who cares? And spoiled! She gets twenty pounds of peas, with no appreciation of the danger people went through to deliver them or that the delivery woul ...more
Colleen Toporek
This book is deceptively simple. The plot and the tone are straightforward and pared-down, as is the writing style. It's the narrator who makes the book and the ethical questions it raises so complex. Of course the hook, that the main character claims to be the informer who betrayed Anne Frank and her family, is somewhat sensational and grabby, but the questions about what is true and what is acceptable are so layered that I literally could not come to a final conclusion about what I believed. W ...more
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Olean Public Library
Set during WWII, in Amsterdam, the Nazi take over as viewed through the eyes of a young boy, Joop. As the war progresses, the Dutch population is starving and forced to eat tulip bulbs made into soup, thus the title of the book. As an adult Joop "hates" tulips because he knows what they taste like. The young Dutch boy, Joop, eventually discovers a way to bring food home to his starving family and very ill father. With the "help" of his Dutch Nazi uncle, Joop betrays the famous Dutch Jewish girl, ...more
Mary Theobald
Who turned Anne Frank and her family over to the Nazis? No one knows, and no one is likely ever to know, but this short piece of fiction tells a plausible story about a young boy in Amsterdam during Nazi occupation whose actions exposed the Frank family and led directly to Anne's death in the camps. Young Joope and his family were starving and the Nazis were offering money for anyone who could tell them where Jews were hiding. Although it isn't a true story, the truth is probably very close to t ...more
Robert Steagall
Told in first person, Joop is a boy living through world war two and struggles with his family and has to protect Jews. The theme of this book is family struggles as they slowly starve in Amsterdam. The style of this is interesting as the family becomes closer together. This book is good because the characters were changed and formed into people that fight to survive by stealing. This book shows some of the worst parts of the history of world war two. The design of this book starts with telling ...more
This book gives us a perspective that is important in understanding the tragedy of WWII. Using Jews as tools to get what you need isn't defendable as moral behavior, yet given the time and the fear it does help us who didn't live that life understand how it could happen. The way this story unfolds is really compelling--and the pain that Joop underwent trying to feed his family during this terrible time helps put a human face on the betrayal of the most famous of all betrayals--revealing the hidi ...more
Kara Huggard
A story of a young boy coming of age in WWII Holland. This book has a bit more complexity than many books in the genre. Instead of presenting evil Germans, sacrificed Jews, and a saintly citizenry risking their lives to harbor Jews, this short books shows the complicated and ambivalent feelings that many of the Dutch had and shows how their own family life and own need for survival contributed to many of their actions. The tie in to Anne Franks's story, revealed in the first few pages, offers a ...more
Mia Abram
This novel shows a new perspective of the tragedies of WWII. I could not put this book down. I sat with it for 3 hours and just read.
Lourie stays in a first person narrative but makes it interesting by changing whom he is talking to; his brother, Anne Frank, the reader, even God.

The descriptions of Joop's feeling towards each person in the story draws you into it. His discussions with people that cannot reply are intriguing.

Lourie steals your interest from the first line of the book and never r
I love the title and it intrigued me...who could hate tulips??? They are my favorite flower! An elderly man in Amsterdam answers a knock on his door to find his younger brother, whom he has not seen for 60 years. He tells him the story of their youth in war-time Amsterdam and how they were responsible for Anne Frank's family being captured. It was an interesting tale, but not great. The hatred for tulips came about as a result of having to eat tulip bulbs during the war when food was so scarce.
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