Friday 18 October 2019

This page is sponsored by the American Book Center and covers books about the Netherlands and expat life plus translations of Dutch-language literature and Dutch children’s books. If you are bookworm, why not sign up for ABC events?

Safe Passage

Safe Passage

Douglas Ota

In the process of moving families around the world, the task of finding international schools with available places for children is sometimes the deal-breaker. While most international schools offer consistency in language, education and teaching philosophy, these schools have also been given the task of helping children to establish themselves within the school community. A new book by Douglas Ota argues that many students in international schools are suffering, psychologically and academically, due to an absence of available support during... More >


Holland Flowering

Holland Flowering

Andrew Gebhardt

Holland Flowering – How the Dutch Flower Industry Conquered the World is a new book by Andrew Gebhardt and published by Amsterdam University Press (2014). As the title suggests, the book focuses on the Dutch flower industry, specifically FloraHolland, and the influence the industry has had both locally and internationally. Andrew Gebhardt is an American writer based in Amsterdam. With an obvious deep fascination for the flower industry, Gebhardt tackles the subject matter from all angles: including the anthropology of... More >


Arrivals, Departures and the Adventures In-Between

Arrivals, Departures and the Adventures In-Between

Chris O’Shaughnessy

Born in the UK to American parents, O’Shaughnessy has lived, been educated, explored and worked in more than 90 countries. His experiences are incorporated into Arrivals, Departures and the Adventures In-Between providing humorous personal anecdotes to explain the issues frequently experienced by expat kids relocating to new countries as dictated by the jobs of one or both parents. Specifically the book looks at what it is to be a Third Culture Kid (TCK), Cross Culture Kid (CCK) and Invisible Alien.... More >


Dutched Up! Rocking the Clogs Expat Style

Dutched Up! Rocking the Clogs Expat Style

Expat Women Bloggers

Dutched Up! Rocking the Clogs Expat Style is an anthology of expat essays written by 27 smart, sassy and observant women, who have all relocated to the Netherlands.   This collection of 49 essays, technically blog posts, details their personal experiences and observations gathered while attempting to find a place in Dutch society. The essays are arranged under 12 topics including – Culture Shock; Eating and Shopping; Biking; the Dutch Language; Working in the Netherlands; Marrying a Dutchie; Having Babies; Raising... More >


Angel of Amsterdam

Angel of Amsterdam

Geert Mak

Finally, we have an English-language edition of prize-winning Dutch author Geert Mak’s Angel of Amsterdam.  Mak is one of the finest of Dutch authors and the book provides unique glimpse into and better understanding of this fascinating city. First published in 1993,  The Angel of Amsterdam:  Seven City Stories introduces a large, varied cast of loyal Amsterdammers, dating from 1275 to approximately 1990, all boasting a unique attachment to the city. All seven stories are independent essays, connected only by... More >


Little Kingdom by the Sea

Little Kingdom by the Sea

Mark Zegeling

Since the late 1950s, Dutch flag carrier KLM has been giving little Delft blue and white pottery houses to its first class (now business class) passengers. The houses, actually little bottles containing jenever, or Dutch gin, are all based on real buildings and Little Kingdom by the Sea tells their stories. The little houses are beloved by collectors and offered for sale on auction sites and specialist websites all over the internet. Among the collectors, the book says, is celebrated... More >


Whipped Cream Architecture

Whipped Cream Architecture

Niek Biegman

It might sound like an odd title, but once you read the first few paragraphs it makes perfect sense. Whipped cream is a book of photography with a few pages of information about the origins of the white painted stone ‘wigs’ that grace the gables of the grachtenpanden (canal houses) in Amsterdam. If the subject matter floats your boat and you are curious about, or interested in the history of Holland_Ž“s distinct architectural style then this is likely to appeal.... More >


Walk & Eat Amsterdam

Walk & Eat Amsterdam

Cecily Layzell

This dinky little guide book is perfect for anyone already familiar with Amsterdam who wants to see more, and feast as they go. If you’Ž“ve seen the sights, visited the museums and experienced the delights of this fair city – and you enjoy troughing, then Walk & Eat Amsterdam is a bit of a treasure. Food writer, Cecily Layzell has produced a: Ž•light-hearted introduction to Dutch cuisine and eating habits, and combined it with different walks (including a night yomp),... More >


Uit Kijk Punten/ Scenic Points Amsterdam

Uit Kijk Punten/ Scenic Points Amsterdam

Eelco van Geene and Marijke Mooy

If you’Ž“ve ever stood on top of a building looking out over a big city and wondered what you can see in the distance then Uit Kijk Punten might tickle your fancy. Eelco van Geene and Marijke Mooy have created an alternative guide book that instead of leading you around the city at ground level, views Amsterdam from above and nicely presents it in photographs. Uit Kijk Punten shows panoramic shots of the Amsterdam skyline in every direction from 30... More >


Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds

Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds

David C. Pollock & Ruth E. Van Reken

Third Culture Kids (TCKs) are, as the title suggests, children who have grown up among worlds, living in other countries during their formative years. This might not seem like a demographic worthy of a 300 page book, but the expat experience for most of us will have a profound impact on our emotional resilience and world outlook, and children are no exception. In Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds, Authors David C. Pollock and Ruth E. Van Reken examine... More >


The Mobile Life

The Mobile Life

Diane Lemieux and Anne Parker

The Mobile Life – a new approach to moving anywhere by veteran global citizen Diane Lemieux and Anne Parker targets individuals embarking on their first expatriate experience. Knowledgeable about the topic from both a professional and personal basis, the authors have tackled the subject with an extremely detailed interpretation of what is required to conscientiously make the decision to uproot and resettle in an unfamiliar country. REVIEW: On a university curriculum The Mobile Life would find its place on an... More >


The Low Sky: Understanding the Dutch

The Low Sky: Understanding the Dutch

Han van der Horst

Fully updated and revised, this book is considered a classic guide to getting to grips with the natives. And yes, that big sky does have an impact! Doe maar gewoon dan doe je gek genoeg ? Act normally, that?s crazy enough. Nine out of ten people in the Netherlands will quote this well-worn saying if asked to come up with a basic trait of the Dutch character. At times Dutch people will ignore you politely at others they will go... More >



The Dutch, I Presume

The Dutch, I Presume

Martijn De Rooi and Jurjen Drenth

All the cliches are here. This book deals with the forty best-known Dutch features and stereotypes, from windmills to Cruijff and from Rembrandt to the typical toilet. Were the clog and the infamous cheese slicer really Dutch inventions? How come some Dutch masters went bankrupt in the tulip trade? And why have most Dutch never heard of world-famous Hans Brinker? Providing the facts and unraveling the myths, this book gives you the essentials on living in the polders, and is... More >


The Dutch: Prelude to their Golden Age

The Dutch: Prelude to their Golden Age

Richard E. Shultz

A historical novel about the time before the Dutch Golden Age? ‘This could be hard work to wade through,’ I said to myself. But as often happens when I judge a book by its cover, I was completely wrong, and it was well worth the effort. Author Richard E. Shultz has woven a huge amount of historical information into his book, which European history buffs should find very interesting. It also tells a good story, and what I found particularly... More >


The Harbour Master

The Harbour Master

Daniel Pembrey

The latest novella from British author, Daniel Pembrey, is a thriller set in modern day Amsterdam. The Harbour Master escorts readers into the seedier parts of the Dutch capital in this fast-paced tale of prostitution, murder, human trafficking and police corruption. Amsterdam police detective, Henk van der Pol, is on the downhill run towards his retirement. During an early morning patrol, he discovers a woman’s body floating in the Amsterdam harbour. Henk becomes overtly suspicious of the police investigation into... More >


The House of Dolls

The House of Dolls

David Hewson

British author David Hewson is better known for writing two novels based on the hit Danish television show, The Killing, but this time, he’Ž“s in Amsterdam, with his new novel, The House of Dolls, which will be part of a series. The book follows a retired police detective who is brought back to work after the purported kidnapping of a young woman under circumstances similar to those of his own daughterŽ“s three years before. Like Hewson’Ž“s other work, The House... More >


The Hague and the best of the Netherlands

The Hague and the best of the Netherlands

Violetta Polese and Blake Evans-Pritchard

Published in 2013, The Hague and the best of the Netherlands by Violetta Polese and Blake Evans-Pritchard, elects The Hague, and not Amsterdam, as the focus city of the book. The rationale behind this choice is that many expats relocate to The Hague. Although a valid explanation, curious readers may suspect the additional motive behind choosing The Hague is that it was the adopted home of the authors during their time in the Netherlands. The book is written in three... More >


The Dutch and their Delta: Living below sea level

The Dutch and their Delta: Living below sea level

Jacob Vossestein

Jacob Vossestein XPat Media: €24.95 Buy this book It’Ž“s a little known fact outside of the Netherlands that one third of this tiny country – if it weren’Ž“t for a couple of great big hulking dijks -Ž would be submerged under rather a lot of water. Left to Mother Nature, Schipol Airport would in fact be a lake (it’Ž“s 3 meters below sea level), and rural North Holland – where I used to live – should actually be reclaimed by... More >


The Dutch and their Bikes

The Dutch and their Bikes

Shirley Agudo

Books about Dutch biking culture continue to grow in popularity, with more titles appearing on the bookshelves each year. Four years ago, American photojournalist and long-term resident in the Netherlands, Shirley Agudo, published Bicycle Mania, receiving rave reviews from international readers. Continuing on this same theme, Agudo has recently released a new extended version of her first book, titled The Dutch and Their Bikes: Scenes from a Nation of Cyclists. This new coffee table book exhibits about 700 photographs of Dutch... More >