Between Title and Position – Marja Visscher

'Tussen rang en stand' [NL] - written by Marja Visscher.
‘Tussen rang en stand’ [NL] – written by Marja Visscher. Cover copyright by publisher Zomer & Keuning, official website link in the image.
My book review of “Between Title and Position [EN] | Tussen rang en stand [NL]” written by Marja Visscher

In my view…

This partly true-life story combines history and fiction. The author has done a lot of research to this person who really existed and to the historical background of the environment. I love reading those kind of books to retrieve a kind of imagination of how people have lived back then. The story starts in the midst of the 18th century (~1753) and tells about the life of Sara Louisa du Faget van Assendelft. She lives together with her parents in The Hague, The Netherlands, in a very famous street where the nobility lived. The ‘jours’, high tea’s, card, gambling and dinner parties are an every days subject. Your title is very important and your position can be of influence. Sara decides to explore more of life than the daily routines she experiences in The Hague. Together with her best friend and neighbour Hille Staal, she travels to the southern part of South Holland. She travels to Heinenoord where her family has an estate that needs some renovation due to storms of the past couple of years. What happens there during the first few months, changes her life forever. She could lose her position, she could lose her title. And the people do treat her like a person with status, not being just one of them who comes for a mindful peace and a renovation.

Writing style / spelling

In this book I have found no writing or spelling errors. It reads very lightly and the pace is normal to quick. Now and then it lets you think and now and then it speeds up. But this also happens because of the storytelling and the gaps in time that now and then occur. Especially more towards the end of the book so the pace of reading speeds up.

Main characters

Besides Sara Louisa du Faget, there are also many other persons mentioned now and then in the story. Her parents, her best friend Hille Staal and her dad Claudius Staal. In Heinenoord lived also many people who helped with and during the renovation. These persons were: Maaike Sevenbergen, Pieter Sevenbergen, Leeuwenburgh, Dirk van der Pligt and his kids, Teun Gorissen, Louter, Barendregt, and Dreesman. All these names are typical Dutch and some names appear really often in this part of Holland, even nowadays.

I hope you like the book too. It is worth to read it! I have described the beginning of the story but I am not quoting facts of how the story exactly develops – you have to read the book yourself and make your own opinion. 

Greetings by Sophie

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Continue reading “Between Title and Position – Marja Visscher”

The Stairs of Rotterdam

Today at the end of my exam week, I did some cultural discovery in my hometown Rotterdam. I have climbed the stairs! It takes 140 steps on the partly wooden staircase to reach the top of the ‘Groothandels Gebouw’. A famous old gigantic trade building where during the reconstruction of Rotterdam, much trade occurred.

And this is the picture I took today from the rooftop of this gigantic building. You see on the left the famous Erasmus bridge .In the middle west part of the city center with its changing architectures and in the distance the southern cultural part of Rotterdam. On the right you see the gigantic hospital Erasmus Medical Center, also shortly known as Erasmus MC.

Continue reading “The Stairs of Rotterdam”

In the city I’m living, Rotterdam, I walk and cycle a lot. Sometimes partly guided by the public transport like the tram, the metro or the bus. Or by bikeshops. Just to take a look through the window and search with my eyes for the little hidden beauty of cycling kits, accessories, bikes and so on. Today was a very sunny, warm, nearly windstill day and the first – measured in degrees – summer day of the year 2015! And a – mostly – windstill day, is a rare happening in Rotterdam. I decided to take a break this midday and have a drink alongside a beautiful water place. I enjoyed the view accompanied by a good historical novel book named: Jacoba, Dochter van Holland and written by Simone van der Vlugt. When it was time to go home, I decided to walk back home, it is not a short walk. But with this weather it does not matter how long the walk is. As long as you enjoy walking and arrive back home.

This has been my beautiful view, suddenly a family of swans came for a short visit. 

My question to you: Do you like to walking home from spontaneously instead of taking the public transport?

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