The Hiding Place Summary

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My son wrote an interesting summary of The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom.

The Hiding Place Summary

by Bryan Evans, age 14

Once upon a time there was a Beje (don’t even ask me what that means). In it lived a family called the Ten Booms. I don’t know what’s weirder, the name of the place they lived in or their last name. There was Corrie, and Betsy, and Father (yes, that’s his first name). They sold watches (evidently you can sell watches at this thing called a Beje). Everything was just great… except that German weirdo who punched old people. But then the Germans took over Poland and ruined everything! They confiscated the radios and telephones and gave people ration cards and smashed random places and took all the stuff and arrested Jews and *gasping for air*–where was I?

The Beje turned into a hiding place for Jews who didn’t want to die (another thing you can do with a Beje), and also a hiding place for fake ration cards. The watch business actually did well because those rude German soldiers wanted their watches repaired. Suddenly they realized that everyone knew about their top secret base of operations, and sure enough, German soldiers barged in. “Where are the Jews?” “What Jews?” (Apparently Corrie had a terrible memory). “I know they’re in here!” So they tied her to the wall and searched all over the place and somewhere in the middle of it all the phone got knocked off the hook. And do you know what it said? I’ll tell you what it said!

“Corrie! You are in grave danger! Any minute now German soldiers will barge into the Beje and search everywhere! You must warn the Jewish man who’s coming at 4:30 and the Jewish mother with her baby who are coming at 6:00! You need to evacuate the Beje, Corrie! I think they’ll suspect that you’re hiding Jews in your house! You need to get rid of all the fake ration cards and hide the radio!” All this time a German soldier was writing this down.

Soon they took Corrie and a bunch of other people to a prison with tiny gray rooms, and they all went insane! Except for Corrie… You know why? She found a few ants, and they have anti-insanity properties. Don’t believe me? Ever seen an insane ant? I thought so. One day, someone gave her some colorful paper and a Bible. Reading the Bible was just about the only thing she could do, other than stare out the window with bars on it.

After a few months they were taken out of prison and shipped to a concentration camp. Apparently the Germans’ favorite color was gray. (I mean, of all the colors, they could have painted everything in sight.) None of the prisoners could leave because of a barbed wire fence. They had to sleep on fermented rotting straw full of lice. During the day, Corrie worked on relay switches. She did so well, a friendly guard broke some of them and said, “Now fix them again, slowly and inefficiently. You’ve already made your daily quota! Don’t you know German fighter planes are gonna use these? You don’t want them to work perfectly, do you?”

The Germans decided it wasn’t depressing enough, so they took all the prisoners to Ravensbruck. This was another concentration camp, one that treated its prisoners notoriously badly. To get there, they took a train that could hold 40 people. However, they stuffed 80 people in there, killing dozens of people standing in the middle for no reason. The trip was days long. They finally made it to Ravensbruck. Not only was the concentration camp gray and surrounded with barbed wire, but there were no living plants in sight. Everything was miserable. When they went to bed, not only was the fermented rotting straw they slept on full of lice, but fleas as well. Betsy was sick, but they had a small bottle of pills. Miraculously, day after day the bottle didn’t run out of pills. It got to the point where it became obvious that it was a miracle. After what must have been years, they were finally released, but not before Betsy died.

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