Mandy's Reviews > Remember the Lilies

Remember the Lilies by Liz Tolsma
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After reading Liz Tolsma's Daisies are Forever, I had very high expectations for this book. The author really isn't afraid to delve into the horrors of war and the devastation it brings. I was excited to read what life was like in the Philippines at the time after having read so many WWII novels set in the European theater.

In regards to this story, I had a hard time connecting with the characters. At first I thought Irene was brave for bringing Rand the censored part of his message in order to save his life as a fellow internee, but as the story moved on, I felt some of her actions came across as immature, including her gullibility, lack of compassion for Mercedes and stubbornness regarding Rand's commitment to her at the end. Rand's character undergoes a huge transformation and it was a good one at that. He was perhaps my favorite character. I didn't care for the blackmailing that came from Mr. Covey, at times it didn't seem believable that a wealthy, independent man like Rand would allow himself to be backed into a corner time and time again. Nor why Irene would allow the man to blackmail her either. My last disconnection was how long Rand and Irene would go without seeing other, knowing full well in a gated community only so big, that they had plenty of opportunity to see each other or connect. I finished the book feeling just a little let down. I'm not saying this story wasn't good in it's own right, it was, but I just felt it could have been better.

Overall, depictions of life in the camp were real and believable, and harsh. My heart broke for those who truly went through those years in Santo Tomas. I found myself Googling photos of the camp and the internees who lived there. Throughout, there's enough change to keep pulling you into the story and wanting to see how it turns out. Overall, I give the story three stars and recommend it for historical purposes and education, if nothing else.

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Reading Progress

December 27, 2017 – Started Reading
December 27, 2017 – Shelved
January 17, 2018 – Finished Reading

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