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By Chance Alone

A Remarkable True Story of Courage and Survival at Auschwitz
Written by: Max Eisen
Narrated by: Douglas E. Hughes
Length: 5 hrs and 59 mins
4.8 out of 5 stars (221 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

An award-winning, internationally best-selling Holocaust memoir by Max Eisen, in the tradition of Elie Wiesel’s Night and Primo Levi’s Survival in Auschwitz

In the spring of 1944 gendarmes forcibly removed Tibor “Max” Eisen and his family from their home, brought them to a brickyard, and eventually loaded them onto crowded cattle cars bound for Auschwitz-Birkenau. At 15 years of age, Eisen survived the selection process and he was inducted into the camp as a slave laborer.

More than 70 years after the Nazi camps were liberated by the Allies, By Chance Alone details Eisen’s story of survival: the backbreaking slave labor in Auschwitz I, the infamous death march in January 1945, the painful aftermath of liberation, and Eisen’s journey of physical and psychological healing. Ultimately, the book offers a message of hope as the author finds his way to a new life. 

©2016 Max Eisen (P)2019 Audible, Inc.
Max Eisen

About the Author

Max Eisen is a Hungarian Jew who was deported to Auschwitz in the spring of 1944. He is a passionate speaker and educator who volunteers at the Sarah and Chaim Neuberger Holocaust Education Centre and the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center in Toronto. He currently resides in Toronto with his wife, Ivy.

Douglas E. Hughes

About the Narrator

Douglas E. Hughes has been an actor, playwright, and voice artist for the past 40 years. He spent 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival, another three at Stratford, and has worked in theatres across this country and in the U.S.

With his writing partner, Marcia Kash, Hughes has written five plays — all published by Samuel French, Inc. — which have had more than 200 productions in over a dozen countries around the world, and have been translated into eight languages. Hughes and Kash are currently at work on their sixth collaborative effort, a play called Deadline. Doug has also penned a yet-to-be-published novel of his own — a comedy-thriller entitled The Poor Player.

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What listeners say about By Chance Alone

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  • DD
  • 2019-07-25

Heartbreaking

A memoir that needed to be published. Our world must never forget nor deny the horrors that were perpetuated on the Jewish people of the world. Thank you for being so bare to share your life story with new generations.

3 people found this helpful

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Exceptional

This is the story of a man who has been through the unthinkable. A must read to truly understand the atrocities of The Holocaust.

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We human can do all this?

Keep recounting these stories with the hope that these inhumane events won't be repeated.

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A powerful memoir

This book brings the holocaust to life in a way I have not previously experienced. The story is powerful and the narration is excellent. Not easily forgotten, this book deserves to be widely shared. I highly recommend.

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Heartbreaking but very well written!

This book was an excellent descriptive of the life Max lived as a Jew during the years the Nazis rose to power. It is a beautiful account of his family turning to a very difficult read of the time he spent suffering in the camps. I not only learned more about the plight of the Jews but felt this personal account was incredibly touching. Thank you!

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  • Cat
  • 2020-07-09

A very moving and educational memoir

This book should be part of mandatory curriculum in schools. It is a needed reminder of both the atrocities as well as the resilience and kindness humans are capable of. Well worth the read.

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Gripping

A truly gripping and heartbreaking story. couldn't stop listening to his wrenching testimony. I highly recommend this book.

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Painful story.

It shows how human beings can destroy their follow human beings using fake and false ideologies.

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  • JCA
  • 2020-01-13

I will never complain about my life again!

Just when you think your life is hard....you need to listen to this book. Such a powerful story - what this young man had to endure is beyond comprehension. Heartbreaking but uplifting - to hear how one person can endure such hardship but yet survive and thrive. Worth a listen!

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Must listen

An incredible story of resilience and human recovery. Eisen is one of the last generation of Jews who suffered unspeakable violence during the Hitler years and has made it his mission to share his story so we don't forget. Unbelievable performance. listen to him.

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  • Suszanne Guymer
  • 2019-07-17

A must read

Very well written , but the saddest of stories. May we never forget. One very courageous man.

3 people found this helpful