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Publisher's Summary

"National Jewish Book Award winter Ron Balson returns triumphantly with Eli’s Promise, a captivating saga of the Holocaust and its aftermath spanning decades and continents. Readers will not be able to put this book down, but will turn the pages compulsively with heart in throat, eager to learn the fate of the Rosen family. Balson’s meticulous historical detail, vivid prose and unforgettable characters further solidify his place among the most esteemed writers of historical fiction today." (Pam Jenoff, New York Times best-selling author of The Lost Girls of Paris)

A "fixer" in a Polish town during World War II, his betrayal of a Jewish family, and a search for justice 25 years later - by the winner of the National Jewish Book Award. 

Eli's Promise is a masterful work of historical fiction spanning three eras - Nazi-occupied Poland, the American Zone of post-war Germany, and Chicago at the height of the Vietnam War. Award-winning author Ronald H. Balson explores the human cost of war, the mixed blessings of survival, and the enduring strength of family bonds. 

1939: Eli Rosen lives with his wife Esther and their young son in the Polish town of Lublin, where his family owns a construction company. As a consequence of the Nazi occupation, Eli’s company is Aryanized, appropriated and transferred to Maximilian Poleski - an unprincipled profiteer who peddles favors to Lublin’s subjugated residents. An uneasy alliance is formed; Poleski will keep the Rosen family safe if Eli will manage the business. Will Poleski honor his promise or will their relationship end in betrayal and tragedy? 

1946: Eli resides with his son in a displaced persons camp in Allied-occupied Germany hoping for a visa to America. His wife has been missing since the war. One man is sneaking around the camps selling illegal visas; might he know what has happened to her?

1965: Eli rents a room in Albany Park, Chicago. He is on a mission. With patience, cunning, and relentless focus, he navigates unfamiliar streets and dangerous political backrooms, searching for the truth. Powerful and emotional, Ronald H. Balson's Eli's Promise is a rich, rewarding novel of World War II and a husband’s quest for justice. 

A Macmillan Audio production from St. Martin's Press

"Ron Balson’s latest historical novel Eli's Promise is a powerful, superbly crafted tale. With meticulous historical detail, the novel is equal parts heartbreaking and life affirming, with themes that are as relevant today as ever. Eli's Promise is historical fiction at its finest..." (Jane Healey, best-selling author of The Beantown Girls

©2020 Ronald H. Balson (P)2020 Macmillan Audio

What listeners say about Eli's Promise

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-12-2020

The author of Eli’s Promise did it again ... loved his most recent book, that grabbed me from the start!

I have read all of ( historical fiction) books and they have been unputdownable!
I would highly recommend his newest book!

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  • Trudy Owens
  • 28-10-2020

Balson saves us from the full horror

mostly through the shifts in time. We are not forced to suffer as he did (along with so many others) in real time. He gives us respites by jumping ahead in time, so we know that at least this or that person survived. The betrayals and deaths come up slowly, with breathing space, rather than inexorably goose-stepping into our homes in the middle of the night. The horror is still there, but we are saved from its full force. But it is also about how we as people sit back and allow small wrongs to continue, until finally, there is no end to the inhumanity, and we don't understand how we could have arrived here.

The ending is a bit unsatisfying for those of us who want retribution and justice. Maybe that is the point. Horrible true life becomes a beautiful tale.

The narration is superb, voices and accents, all wonderful.

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  • Laura Maness
  • 21-01-2021

Better than expected

I have read and listened to numerous books on stories of WWII and the nazi infiltration. This one was surprisingly different in the way the story was told.
Lots of flash back and flash way way back. At times a bit confusing but only for a moment and the chapter titles help a lot.
The narrator was awesome. I think this made the book even better.
Give it a try you won’t be disappointed.

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  • Sarah F.
  • 09-01-2021

Superb

As always, Ronald Balson’s historical fiction storyline captivated me from beginning to end. Adding to the brilliant writing of Ronald Balson is the impeccable narration of Fred Berman, who is without a doubt the best narrator I have ever heard! Each character - male AND female absolutely sound like different people are speaking thanks to his pure talent. Highly recommend this book!!

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  • Robert R.
  • 18-10-2020

Balson Never Disappoints

You will love Eli and his drive to survive and move forward on his promise.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 27-09-2020

Another Winner

This is the 6th book by Balson that I've read and it's the best one. I read many books about WWII. Balson and Pam Jenoff are my favorite writers. First, I love the character Eli. Nothing takes place in the concentration camp except the liberation of Eli and his son at the very beginning. The rest of the book is divided among the first 3 years of the war in Poland, after the war in an American displaced persons camp in Bavaria, and in 1960's Chicago. There's a bit of mystery to follow and Balson's characters are likable and believable. This is the first WWII book I've read that goes into detail about life in the displaced person's camps. Reading about the relationships that formed in the American camp was thought provoking.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who's looking for a good read whether you're into WWII books or not. One of my Jewish friends is almost finished with it and she loves it as much as I do.

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  • Olga
  • 09-06-2021

Balson never disappoints

Very consistently with all his other books, this one is beautifully written and captivating. The narrator is consistently excellent as well. Thank you for a beautiful book and performance.

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  • Lawrence P.
  • 18-05-2021

Boring, Disappointing after author's other books

I was so disappointed after really enjoying Berman's other books: Once we were Brothers, Karolina's Twins, etc. Eli's Promise droned on and on with a weak plot and thinly developed characters. Much of the descriptions of geographical locations seemed like "filler."

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  • Consumer 1
  • 08-05-2021

Captivating story

Such a great story and the reader did a fantastic job narrating it. Accidentally tore through this book in 2-days.

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  • Bree
  • 21-04-2021

awesome

I loved it. it was really hard to pause it i needed too. I thought the narrative was excellent

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  • Christineb
  • 21-10-2020

It was narrated well

This just felt such a copycat of previous book A twist of an angle of two disappointed the story was so disingenuous Even the narrator was the same

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