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.
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