Title: The Old Gilt Clock
Author: Paulette Mahurin
During one of the darkest times in human history when millions of innocent Jews and others deemed “undesirables” were being sent to concentration camps to be brutality worked to death or slaughtered, a group of Dutch resistance workers rose up against the atrocities. Their resistance to the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands created a vast counterintelligence, domestic sabotage, and communications network to help hide Jewish people from German authorities. The Old Gilt Clock is the story of how one Dutch resistance member, Willem Arondéus, risked his life to defy the Nazis’ plans to identify and deport hundreds of thousands of Dutch Jews. Arondéus’ courage is largely forgotten by history, but not by the Jewish and Dutch people. Written by the award-winning international Amazon bestselling author of The Seven Year Dress, comes a story of Arondéus’ courageous struggle to stand up to the unimaginable evil designs of Hitler. Inclusive is Arondéus’ battle to come out to his homophobic father, who hated his son’s homosexuality. It is also a story about friendships formed in the Dutch resistance movement, their joys and sorrows, their wins and losses, their loves and betrayals, and ultimately their resilience to oppose tyranny and oppression when millions stood silent condoning heinous behavior. Thousands are alive today because of these brave, compassionate men and women.
Willem Arondeus is a gentle soul. An artist with homosexual tendencies. When Hitler and his Nazi’s descend over Willem’s country, he’s placed into the same category as the Jews. Willem has a choice to make—rise up against the prejudice or let it destroy everything dear to him.
Willem was a very fascinating character. Built up with a sense of his normality that made him easy to relate to. The fact that he was an unusual hero also made the story interesting because it added to that sense of helplessness that people like him must’ve felt when the Nazis came to power.
To me, it was an interesting foil to the political influences that are rising in today’s society in America. A lot of people feel helpless to change the terrible things around them, but this story is good testament to exactly what one person can do when they set their mind to something. Invoking change isn’t just about what one person can do for society. It also takes into account what they can encourage others to do as well.
This is a solid story with good historical impact. Stories like this show that even the impossible isn’t truly impossible when someone puts their mind to achieving something they believe in. Above all, good will always triumph over evil.