Brother Enemy

by Robert Elmer
Series: Promise of Zion #4
162 pages, Historical Fiction
Reviewed by Ariel_of_Narnia

Fun to read, great story, and a spirit of hope and trust throughout.


Dov Zalinski is a part of the Haganah now, the Jewish Defense force. But he's not fighting with weapons. He's fighting with words over the radio. And he's hoping those waves will connect him with his older brother Natan.

At the same time, Emily Parkinson is struggling with the definition of "home": Israel or England? She makes a promise to Dov to do what she can to find his mother and brother, but it won't be easy to keep once she is in England.


Dov runs to a bomb site to help and also assists the Haganah in any way he can. He is more caring about others in this story. He sneaks a ride when he knows he wouldn't be allowed (he is soundly scolded for it). Despite harsh words and actions, Dov and Natan really love each other.

The Parkinson's driver opens Emily's eyes to how selfish she is. Major Parkinson does his best to track down terrorists and tries to keep his family safe, if not together. Despite the contradiction to his wishes, he keeps his promise to Emily's tutor/governess to send her home as soon as possible.

Spiritual Content

More of Christianity is seen and it seems that it is slowly rubbing off on Dov. Emily's aunt and uncle are devout Christians, living exemplary lives and open about praying.

Dov places a prayer note into a crack in the Wailing Wall even though he's not completely sure God will answer. Emily prays progressively more (as does Dov). Natan seems like he could care less. The Sabbath is celebrated Jewish style. One man has a book of rabbis' wise sayings.


Store items, cars, and people are crushed by bomb debris. WWII themes and the danger to Jerusalem are mentioned. Bombs constantly go off and guns are fired. A battle is witnessed: buildings are blown up and some deaths are implied.

Dov lunges in anger at Natan at one point. Natan throws himself on Dov to protect him, getting knocked on the head at the same time. And as part of the Irgun, a Jewish terrorist group, Natan takes some crazy chances.

Drug and Alcohol Content


Sexual Content


Crude or Profane Language or Content



Follow Emily's sorrow about leaving Israel and Dov's hope in finding family. The characters are again easy to connect with and some of the experiences they live through are historically based. Continuing on to the next book is probably a good idea since the story ends with a cliffhanger.

Fun Score: 5
Values Score: 5
Written for Age: 11-12

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