Info from Anne Frank House Bookstore:
This handy-sized catalogue with lots of photographs provides a good overview of the Anne Frank House and its history.
Anne Frank’s life is exposed with many family photographs. The historic photo material and the quotes from Anne Frank give an impression of the hiding period and the events during the Second World War.
Sometimes, you have to remind yourself why you read a book, beyond writing a review for a blog out of a sense of obligation. Some read to be transported away from their daily grind. Some to fall in love with a character. Whilst some decide to remind themselves of the importance of life through the eyes of another person.
With the feeling that I was finding my reading unrewarding, I decided to read this book that would help me build upon my experience of not only reading “The Diary Of A Young Girl” last year but to reconnect with my experience of visiting the Anne Frank House last year with my best friend Mendy.
To call this book a “catalogue” or a “guide book” is both appropriate, in the context that it supported the experience of visiting the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, whilst on the other hand these terms are a bit of a misnomer because it can also be read as a book in its own right.
This book serves several purposes. Firstly, it provides a history of the Frank family along with the backdrop of Nazi occupied Holland which forced the Franks, along with the van Pels family and Fritz Pfeffer, to go into hiding in 1942.
Secondly, it builds upon “The Diary Of A Young Girl” by conducting the reader on a “tour” of “The Secret Annex”, now the Anne Frank House, through the use of passages of Anne’s writing along with photographs of Anne, the other people who went into hiding and their helpers, along with pictures of the building itself and items from the time.
Thirdly, it provides information as to what happened to the people who went into hiding and their helpers following their arrest in 1944.
Finally, the book goes into the publication of Anne’s diary, its worldwide impact and the eventual creation of the Anne Frank House and its legacy going into the 21st century.
Whilst I found the Diary itself was an emotionally moving book to read, this book builds upon this through the use of pictures of not only the location of “The Annex” but through the pictures of the people and personal effects of the people involved, both the people who went into hiding and their helpers. In effect, this book adds an extra dimension to Anne’s Diary so that the people aren’t seen just as words on a page.
I started writing this post by saying that sometimes you need to remind yourself why you read a book. This book has helped remind of how important how books can be, rather than simply as a collection of words and punctuation.
This book is available through the Anne Frank House, both in their physical bookstore at the House itself and through their online bookstore and I would recommend it to anyone who wishes to gain a greater knowledge of the circumstances behind “The Diary Of A Young Girl” and should you ever have the opportunity to visit the Anne Frank House, I would recommend that you seize it.