Things We Couldn't Say

by Diet Eman
398 pages, Biography/History
Reviewed by lynnae spafford

True story of a woman's courage during WWII.


This is a fascinating story of courage when danger is staring you straight in the face, threatening you and those you love. Yet Diet Eman found that the closer she was to suffering the closer she was to God. "It seems that the only thing that keeps me close to You is suffering. If that is so, I nearly would pray for sorrow, for most important that I stay close to You" (pg 86). Her prayer was answered in what would seem the hardest way.

Diet Eman is a tomboyish and independent girl who finds herself helplessly in love with this strange intruder in her home. Yet the timing could not have been worse, for as soon as a romance begins, their hearts are separated for miles, with danger standing in between. As the realization of coming terrors sets in with the rise of Hitler, those oppressed long for justice. And so begins the underground resistance. Diet Eman and her fiance Hein Sietsma are part of it. Diet finds that keeping the Jews content is as hard as keeping them safe.

Not only is Diet hiding Jews but she too is among the most wanted. Then it happens - Diet Eman is no longer a free and independent girl, but a helpless prisoner in Scheveningen. Yet Diet finds strength and comfort in her Savior. Even though she cannot fully trust anyone around her for fear of a spy, she finds God to be her most faithful friend. She can feel her faith being tried, but the verse that helps her most and is engraved on the Scheveningen walls is, "Lo, I am with you always."


Eman witnesses to those around her, and shows God's love through her situation. The cruelty of Hitler is portrayed against the kindness of those who shelter the oppressed.

Spiritual Content

In the midst of troubles, God is glorified. She lean on Him when times are hard and learns in her trials.


Beatings and the killing of Jews, gypsies, and Slavs are mentioned. Eman is kept in a concentration camp with other men and women.

Drug and Alcohol Content


Sexual Content

Girl mentions wanting to free herself by selling her body to the Germans.

Crude or Profane Language or Content

D--n used twice in anger at the Nazis.


A fascinating, moving true story of what the prison camps were like and how God used them for His glory. Stories like this of believers in past times can help support believers of today.

Fun Score: 5
Values Score: 5
Written for Age: adult

Review Rating:

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