Thursday, August 23, 2018

The Radio Signal

The Radio Signal
Friedhelm Radandt
(Deep River Books)
ISBN: 978-1940269917
June 2016/256 pages/$15.99

The True Story of a Harrowing Escape and a Love that Arose from a World War

Growing up in bucolic Eastern Pomerania during the early years of World War II, young Friedhelm Radandt has listened with his family on the Volksempfänger (people’s radio) to the many victory news bulletins. At the same time, Elizabeth Jobs and her family have lived in urbane Warsaw as loyal citizens of Poland who cherish their ethnic German heritage.

As the war intensifies, the Radandts continue to hold worship meetings in their home and defy the pressure of local party leaders to send their sons to the notorious school for future Nazi leaders. Meanwhile, across the border, Elizabeth’s family must cope with the death sentence from the Polish resistance movement for her father, Ludwig, the researcher and developer of radio tubes. When both families are driven from their homes, each embark on harrowing, yet thrilling parallel escape routes across war-torn Germany. Amid the darkness and rubble, can the light of love emerge?

The Radio Signal captures the true story of two separate families who share a vibrant faith that imbues their actions with courage and trust. During the war, neither family knew of the other. Neither family knew that their paths would ultimately cross.

“We can hardly imagine what it was like for Christians living in Germany during the Third Reich. But now we don’t have to, because my friend Friedhelm Radandt was there and has given us this extraordinary book about his experiences. He writes about it in such a fresh and compelling way that you almost feel it happened yesterday. And unlike many stories from that terrible time, this one has a happy ending, in which God brings Friedhelm through these trials to America―and eventually to be the president of the King’s College in New York. What a story this is, and I’m so grateful we can now read it for ourselves.”

―Eric Metaxas, NYTimes bestselling author of Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy


Friedhelm Radandt served as a college president for a quarter of a century, first at Northwestern College in Iowa and then at The King’s College in New York. After arriving from his native Germany as an immigrant, he earned graduate degrees at The University of Chicago and enjoyed a rewarding teaching career at that institution and at Lake Forest College. Radandt never lost the spark for engaging students in discussing ideas and historical events, drawing often on his and his wife’s dramatic and vivid memories of World War II. Now living in the Seattle area in his retirement, Friedhelm has once again returned to his calling as teacher and mentor while imagining his and Elizabeth’s college-age grandchildren as readers. It’s for them and thousands like them he created the captivating memoir, The Radio Signal


This book brings to light a facet of World War II that I had not previously contemplated beyond the story of Corre Ten Boom and her family as detailed in The Hiding Place: what it was like to be a Christian living in Germany during those horrific years. Friedhelm Radandt brings to life the experiences of his own family as he was growing up as well as those of Elizabeth, the girl who would grow up to become his wife, and her family. The frequent moves, the dashes to bomb shelters, the separation from family members--all are portrayed in eye-opening detail. As this is an autobiographical/biographical rather than fictional work, the writing can be a bit dry at times. Yet the overarching theme of God's faithfulness in the midst of darkness shines throughout the book. Don't miss this inspiring and encouraging account.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Deep River Books and Bring It On Communications. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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