Promise at Dawn

Written by Romain Gary | Translated by John Markham Beach
Translated by John Markham Beach
New Directions Publishing
October 2017

A classic of modern French literature, the thrilling real-life story of the military hero, ambassador, ladies man, writer, and loving son!

Promise at Dawn begins as the story of a mother’s sacrifice: alone and poor, she fights fiercely to give her son the very best. Romain Gary chronicles his childhood in Russia, Poland, and on the French Riviera; he recounts his adventurous life as a young man fighting for France in World War II. But above all he tells the story of the love for his mother that was his very life—their secret and private planet, their wonderland “born out of a mother’s murmur into a child’s ear, a promise whispered at dawn of future triumphs and greatness, of justice and love."

About the author: Romain Gary a Franco-Lithuanian novelist

Romain Gary was born Roman Kacew in Vilnius to a family of Lithuanian Jews. He changed his name when he fled Nazi-occupied France to fight for the British as an aviator. He wrote under several pen names and is the only writer to have received the Prix de Goncourt twice. Gary was also a diplomat and filmmaker, and was married to the American actress Jean Seberg. He died in Paris in 1980 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

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