Promised Land: A Novel of Israel

Written by Martin Fletcher
Review by Viviane Crystal

In Munich, Germany, in 1937, we meet Peter and Arie. Peter will escape Germany before the Holocaust tragedy begins; Arie will be forced to engage in unspeakable scenarios in a German concentration camp. Peter will leave America for Israel, and Arie will eventually be sent to Israel as well. Peter will become a senior officer in Israel’s defense agency, Mossad, and Arie will become a rich, famous but haunted and driven entrepreneur.

In 1950, young Tamara and her family are forced to leave Egypt because they are Jewish. Tamara and Peter meet and spend one night together that will overshadow the rest of their lives. Peter becomes a Mossad agent in Europe and later marries a woman named Diana, and Arie meets and marries Tamara.

The remainder of the novel depicts the jealousies and fears that develop between their families. The fears increase as Israel gains independence but must spend most of its time watching its economy flourish over the years and then decline as their international neighbors prepare to go to war against the Jews. The plot thickens with a family tragedy and years of realistically depicted warfare between Israel, Egypt, Jordan, and Syria. During this time, these families will show amazing determination and dedication to their new homeland and relatives. The novel also contains some interesting facts about former German Nazis now working for Arabs, designing weapons for a new war against the Jews.

Promised Land is a sweeping novel of personal and national evolution within Israel as it attempts to forge its respectable, permanent place in the local, national and international communities. Readers will immediately become engaged in this memorable, well-crafted work of historical fiction.