"I do not hate. To hate is to let Hitler win." - Rena Kornreich Gelissen.
On March 26, 1942, the first mass transport of Jews - 999 young women - arrived in Auschwitz. Among them was Rena Kornreich, the 716th woman numbered in camp. A few days later, her sister Danka arrives and so begins a trial of love and courage that will last three years and 41 days, from the beginning Auschwitz death camp to the end of the war.
Rena's Promise stands out from other memoirs not only for the mere length of time she spent in the camps (no other survivor from the first transport has ever written about her experience) but for her dedication to honoring the bonds between mothers, daughters, and sisters, prisoners, and even guards. From her escape from Dr. Mengele's experiment detail to her surreal meetings with SS woman Irma Grese, Rena tells a dynamic tale of courage and compassion that reminds us of the resiliency of the human spirit, and the power of people to help one another in unimaginable circumstances, be they Gentile or Jew, German or Pole, kapo or prisoner.
©1994 Heather Dune Macadan and Rena Kornreich Gelissen (P)2013 Heather Dune Macadam and Rena Kornreich Gelissen
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You could fairly say I am addicted to Holocaust survival stories. I never tire hearing about people’s challenges and how they overcame the worst possible odds – it’s an amazing testament to human resilience. Always impressive.
The production value of this audio book however is the pits! It’s as if it was recorded in 3 different rooms, and then spliced together to make one audio file. The sound is jumpy, the volume is inconsistent, I even thought the narrator had changed on occasion… it did the subject matter a huge disservice as the cuts were so jarring and distracting.
I wish there was a way to rate this other then lumping it in with “performance” in Audible’s star rating system because this is not a critique of the narrator. Overall, it was great content, just a terrible assembly.
I love this book. I chose this memoir for my college Holocaust history corse research paper. It's incredible what those girls had to go through and they still used their agency to live happy successful lives. It's also wonderful how it brings to life the actual people who were sent to these camps, how they were just that. People. not statistics or numbers but actual people who were cast down by their society because of their religion. It's devastating what happened to those people and it should never be forgotten. I believe everyone should read this book. If we don't educate ourselves on subjects like this, if we act ignorant or disassociate ourselves with these people then mass genocide will continue. I also very much appreciate the authors not at the very end about her cat. It brought a smile to my face :)
Only if they fix the volume on the recording--this went up and down through the whole story.
War and Rememberance--each book tells a different side to the Holocaust Also this book reminded me a lot of the Hiding Place
yes I think it would be good to follow through the story
the only reason I gave this book a low rating in the overall category was the volume was not adjustable on the book..sometimes it was low and then other times it was too loud
Yes; although hard to follow this book shows how the love, mutual commitment, and wit of two sisters helped them to survive years in a concentration camp.
Yes, see above.
Well … yes. The biography is compelling although I am not likely to re-read it because the book's organization between the past and present makes it too difficult to follow. It could have benefitted from another round of editing before it went to print.
The substance of the book would make a good movie.
Oh I wish they would have sprung for a professional narrator. The authors voice and her impression
of a polish accent is enough to make your ears bleed. Is was practically unlistenable. And the way the author insinuates herself into the importance of this story is enough to make you wretch.
Really horrible performance. If there is ever a book on knitting or casserole making,
the author maybe could read that outloud to her stupid cat. But that's about all I would grant her.
This woman's story is riveting. It's incredible. Her story was was full of intrigue. It has it's funny parts, it's heart breaking sadness, terrifying moments, courageous acts & so much more. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in learning about a first hand account of the holocaust from a Jewish woman's perspective. The pure unadulterated evil committed by human beings upon other human beings is incomprehensible. Will I ever understand why? Can that question even be answered for any aspect of the holocaust? I don't know. I choose to keep looking for answers.
I enjoyed this book very much. I caught myself being choked up more than once while listening. if you have ever read Holocaust Memoirs, then you know pretty much what to expect. But I do think this one goes above and beyond. I have read over 10 Holocaust Memoirs and this is probably my favorite or at least in the top 3. The narrator does a great job but I only gave 4 stars because there's some background noise that can get irritating at times but not too bad.
I loved this book, I couldn't turn it off.
it was Heartbreaking, yet inspiring. Best in this genre
"Wonderful story but awful reader"
The story is very inspiring if you can endure the reader. I think the author recorded it at home on her personal computer without any guidance and it shows. Her vocal inflections are forced and annoying. I would love to hear this story performed by a professional with some experience!
"Awful annoying narrator and co-author but persevere Rena's promise is an amazing story of hope and courage"
The recording of this audio book is awful the narrator has self edited and recorded over her recording, the audio jumps and repeats itself which is annoying. All through the book there is back ground noise and a bell and it turns out it is the narrators cat! Unbelievable. The story was the only thing that kept me going as I would have requested a refund because the audio quality was so bad. An amazing story of human strength and courage in the face of adversity. Thank you for sharing your story Rena.
"Honest and emotional story ruined by narrator"
The story is important and worthy of a listen but the performance is awful. Apart from the accent and the style of the reader, it is as if she has recorded it at home. You can hear whirring and noises in the background and this is abrasive. A real disappointment.
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