Where Treasure Hides by Johnnie Alexander Donley
Alison Schuyler's life changes one day as she happened to be in Waterloo Station in London waiting for a train. The time is 1939 and Alison sees British soldier, Ian Devlin, defending a young Jewish boy who has been sent from his home to live with an uncle in England. The attraction is instant, but Alison, who works at her family's art gallery in the Netherlands, is hesitant to pursue a relationship. She has been told her whole life that the Schuyler clan is unlucky in love and has been plagued by a curse for generations.
As Allison debates whether to follow her heart or her head, war breaks out in Europe. Ian is called into the fight and Allison is called to protect the treasures of Holland - both its children and its art. As war rages, will Alison and Ian be able to find a way to be together or will tragedy and lies keep them apart?
I really enjoyed reading this book. The love story of a British soldier and an American/Dutch artist is told over the course of 7 years, during most of which Europe is engaged in fighting the Nazis in Germany. Several things that Donley wrote about WWII were new to me - Hitler's master plan to steal art from occupied countries and claim it for his own, the extensive lengths that Alison and her family went through to save the priceless works of art in their gallery, the inner workings of a German POW camp (one that Germany ran, not one that had Germans in it) and glimpsing the Geneva Convention rules in action.
My critique would be that parts of the book did seem very soap opera like. The characters make some very stupid choices that leave you wanting to shake sense into them. Like all soap operas, there is another man who loves Alison and, naturally, despises Ian. This evil mastermind plots to keep them apart and does some insanely intricate planning to make it happen. I don't know if that kind of thing would really have happened in the WWII time period but the author does a good job of making you think it could.
Where Treasure Hides is a very well thought out book with an intricate plot. It leaves you with hope in the power of love and faith in the sovereignty of God. But it also leaves you with the thought that a sequel might be on the horizon one day. And that would be a sequel that I would love to read.
I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.
I was provided with a complementary Kindle version of this book for review by the Tyndale Blog Network. All opinions are my own.