Soft cover, 372 pp
Copyright © 2011
Rising from the Shadow of the Sun brings the horror and losses of World War II on Java off the battlefields and military POW camps and into the world of Ronny Herman, who is barely three years old in 1942 when the Japanese conquer Java and force her family into prison camps where they would suffer until 1945.
Ronny’s father Fokko, a pilot with the Dutch Naval Air Force, escapes with his squadron hours before the Japanese submarines encircle the island. Working under British command in Sri Lanka, Fokko’s story is chronicled along the same timeline as that of his wife and children.
Ronny, her mother Netty and little sister Paula endure starvation, disease and uncertainty. In her diary, smuggled through the camps at the risk of being killed if it had been detected, Netty gives an accurate historical account of the Japanese invasion and the lives of women and children incarcerated under the brutal regime of the Japanese. She describes the years of physical and psychological suffering, but also the hope, faith, solidarity and resilience that remain alive among the imprisoned women.
In the second part of her memoir Ronny tells of her life after the camps: her higher education at Leiden University in the Netherlands, her impromptu wedding and emigration to Pasadena, California in 1972 with two daughters, a son and their dog.
The close-knit family serves as a strong basis for the ups and downs in Ronny’s life. The risks she dares to take, the dreams she fulfills, the rejections and disappointments she endures and the love and compassion she shares with her patients and their families as a hospice patient-care volunteer for six years contribute to a well-balanced and happy life. While acting and modeling in the greater Los Angeles area and juggling family life at home, she writes her first book, In the Shadow of the Sun, based on her mother’s diary, published in 1992 after her move to Hawai’i.
Ronny will take you on an emotional and exciting pilgrimage back to the country of her birth and a spiritual weekend in Kalaupapa, the leper colony on the island of Moloka’i. All this and more you will find in her new book, published in March 2011. Rising from the Shadow of the Sun, A Story of Love, Survival and Joy, published in March 2011 details her journey from childhood deprivation in WWII Japanese concentration camps to peace and prosperity in the 21st century in the USA.
Ronny hopes you will enjoy this Free Excerpt from the book!
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Trailer for Rising from the Shadow of the Sun
For a rare, out-of-print, signed copy, contact the author.
In the Shadow of the Sun is a personal story – based on the diary of the author’s mother, Jeannette Herman-Louwerse – about life in Japanese concentration camps for women and children in the Dutch East Indies during the Second World War. It deals with the anxieties, frustrations and hopes of a young Dutch mother and her two small children who, like thousands of others at that time, were caught in a terrifying situation that cost countless innocent people their lives. In many camps the women did not hear about the Japanese surrender until a week after the fact and many died, not knowing that the war was over.
The book covers the equally unsettling period after the Japanese capitulation when the cry ‘Merdeka’ for independence was heard throughout the islands.