am 21. Dezember 1999
hello! i am 17 old and my name is tali koren from israel. this book is very special for me because Erna Drenger was my grandmother (she died 3 years ago) . my grandmother never told anyone what happened to her in the holocost . last year , after i read this book i desided that it will be the most respectfull thing to do for my grandmother sake that i loved the most from all my family, is to go to polin and birkenau to visit all those places that my grandmother had been. only because this book I desided to go and that trip changed my life. so I like to thank here to the writer and to rena for telling her story to us and to me and by no knowingly , she changed my life as well.
am 20. Mai 2015
I read this book without having prior knowledge about Rena and her family. The story begins with a description of her life in her hometown in southern Poland, her relationship with her parents, siblings and friends. At the beginning of the book the reader gets a glimpse of the life Rena led as a young adult. It is a peaceful and ordinary life of a young woman who is very devoted to her family and especially to her little sister. When things start to change with the advent of the Nazi regime, Rena begins to notice certain changes. She describes from her own perspective how an increasing amount of restrictions are put upon Jewish families like her own. With the rising violence of Nazi soldiers in her town, her parents decide to send her (and later also her sister) away to relatives. To protect her family, Rena finally turns herself in to work in one of the work camps. She discovers too late that this was a mistake since from that moment on she is not treated like a human being anymore, but as a slave. She is transported to the concentration camp in Auschwitz where she is forced to watch to what extent of cruelty people are capable of for several years. Throughout this part of the story the reader gets a glimpse of what the prisoners of the concentration camp needed to go through. There are no words to describe the suffering they experienced and the inhumanity with which they were treated. This book shows many different aspects of the human soul ranging from cruelty and evil to small bits of kindness and love. The will to survive is shown as a constant aspect. In spite of all the cruelty she was forced to watch (ranging from beatings, illness, starvation and experiments carried out by Mengele), it is hard to put this book away since Rena describes the time at Auschwitz from her own perspective together with her thoughts and her impressions. Such impressions can hardly be given by any article or report about the concentration camp. A great book about people who survived the unthinkable and managed to go on with their lives! Highly recommendable!
am 7. Juli 2000
I've been looking for a book about the Holocaust that I could read to my two daughters for a long time, and now I have found it!
My daughters instantly bonded with Rena and her younger sister Danka. Seeing the world through Rena's eyes they were able to see many things I found hard to tell them. Though the eyes of a young girl-woman whom they could identify with, my daughters listen to and follow every word as I read.
They see the devoted love of Rena's mother who shaved her head in Jewish Orthodox style in devotion to her husband, they watched as Rena flirted with a prohibited young gentile boyfriend who steals a first kiss, they see Poland invaded by Nazi power, they listen unbelievably as Rena steps in front of German soldiers with guns ready to shoot as she tells them you will have to shoot me first before I let you kill my father. We follow as she mistakenly sacrifices herself to save the others by turning herself into the German authorities and then becomes one of the first to be interned at Auschwitz only to see her younger sister Danka follow. My daughters listen on the edge of their seats as Rena makes a solemn death oath to her sister to protect and if necessary die for her and with her. We listen in tears as Rena is badly beaten for letting the older women in her work group rest. My girls recoil in shock as Rena tells of mothers and daughters waiting in line nude to be shaved from head to toe sometimes even by their own brothers and fathers under threat of death.
There is much more, but, I can't do this book justice by trying to describe it here. So, in closing, I say this, Rena's Promise is a must buy and should be read by every teenager in the world.
A MUST BUY!
am 30. Oktober 1998
Rena's Promise is the beautifully told story of two remarkable young women in their early twenties who endure and survive nearly three and one half years as prisoners of the Nazis in Auschwitz and Ravensbruck. The love that Rena has for her younger sister, Danka, sustains her and helps her to endure the atrocities and indignities forced upon them on a daily basis by the Nazis. During the time they are prisoners, Rena never once forgets the promise to her mother to take care of her younger sister. There are numerous times when Rena unhesitatingly gives up her daily crust of bread in exchange for medicine or a much needed salve for Danka. And at times when Rena is able to "organize" an extra tidbit of food such as a tiny piece of potato peeling, she meticulously divides it and without exception shares it with her beloved sister. Although Rena is the stronger of the two sisters, Danka's strength emerges during the death march when Rena becomes so weak she cannot stand and walk without assistance. Danka refuses to leave her and with the help of a friend, they support Rena until she regains sufficient strength to walk. In the mist of thousands of starving prisoners when a crust of bread could mean the difference of life or death, Rena retained both dignity and honesty. She was once chosen unanimously by more than a hundred women prisoners with whom she worked to divide ten Red Cross packages of food that miraculously made their way into Rena's block. Numerous footnotes are provided by Rena's freelance co-author which helps the reader to place the events of Rena's story into the sequential order of previously documented facts of the Holocaust. Rena's Promise is a testimony of how the love for her sister gave her the will to go on and how something so simple as the offering by a Nazi of a rag to clean her beaten and bloody face was viewed as a great act compassion.
am 24. Januar 2000
Last eyar I went to e Holocaust Museaum in Washington DC with my organization. My grandfather was directly involved in the holocaust, and I was very anzious to visit. A firend bought this book for me att he end of our tour, I read it in about two hours. It broke my heart, and filled me with joy when I read the ending and learned about Rena's and Danka's liberation. I HIGHLY recommend you read this book, it not only fills you with insight on what people went through at camps, but you're are placed in the story as if you were there. Its a wonderful book. Read it!
am 14. Juli 1999
I would like to commend Heather and Rena for compiling such a deep and remarkable book. Rena's Promise not only went into depths to educate its readers of the hardships our forefathers endured but also showed the strength and determination of one young girl who made a very important promise to her mother. This book was truly heart-rendering, touching and unfortunately true. Rena, I wish you all the best in your life and I know this incident has made you a more strong-willed person than you were then. Rena's Promise is definitely a must-read.