Margriet de Moor
Knopf, Mar 9 2010, $25.95
In 1953 Lidy and her almost identically looking sister Armanda agree to trade places. Lidy will journey to Zierikzee to visit Armanda’s godchild; Armanda will watch her two year old niece and go with her brother-in-law to an Amsterdam gala.
Since WWII ended eight years earlier, the Dutch have neglected the dikes that restrain the flood waters. However, that negligence comes home to roost when a monster storm assaults Holland. When the storm and the aftermath mountain of water hit, thousands die. Over the years since the deadly torrent and flood Armanda feels overwhelming survivor guilt as she should have been the one caught in the deadly storm.
Based on a true catastrophe caused by a North Sea Hurricane sending a monstrous wall of water over the dikes, The Storm grips the audience from the moment the sisters say good-bye. The audience anticipates what will happen as Lidy increasingly expects death while Armanda feels deep guilt praying for a miracle. Margriet de Moor focuses on the two siblings during the natural horror made worse by neglect and specifically afterward on Armanda who is overwhelmed with guilt. In spite of knowing what will pass, The Storm is a gripping historical thriller as this was Holland’s Katrina.