The final, previously unpublished novel by the author of All Quiet on the Western Front - a dreamlike, powerfully moving account of an emigrant's experience of New York during World War II.
From the detention centre on Ellis Island, Ludwig Somner looks across a small stretch of water to the glittering towers of New York, which whisper seductively of freedom after so many years of wandering through a perlious, suffering Europe.
Remarque's final novel, left unfinished at his death, tells of the precarious life of the refugee – life lived in hotel lobbies, on false passports, the strange, ill-assorted refugee community held together by an unspeakable past. For Somner, each new luxury - ice cream served in drugstores, bright shop windows, art, a new suit, a new romance - has a bittersweet edge. Memories of war and inhumanity continue to resurface even in this peaceful promised land.
Remarque died before he could complete The Promised Land, but the four hundred pages he produced, superbly translated by the redoubtable Michael Hofmann, are enough to tell a fascinating and poignant tale about identity, adaptability and the trials of starting afresh
The Promised Land has been both beautifully penned and thoughtfully translated… The Promised Land is a compulsively readable, and rather marvellous historical novel
Remarque is a craftsman of unquestionably first rank
A moving and compelling story...thoughtful reflection on the inhumanity of warfare and the emigrant's predicament, deft characterisation, colourful accounts of life in New York during World War II...readers will readily engage with the rich detail and sympathetic portrayal