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Night: A Memoir (The Night Trilogy #1)

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A memorial edition of Elie Wiesel's seminal memoir of surviving the Nazi death camps, with tributes by President Obama and Samantha Power When Elie Wiesel died in July 2016, the White House issued a memorial statement in which President Barack Obama called him "the conscience of the world." The whole of the president's eloquent tribute will appear as a foreword to this memo A memorial edition of Elie Wiesel's seminal memoir of surviving the Nazi death camps, with tributes by President Obama and Samantha Power When Elie Wiesel died in July 2016, the White House issued a memorial statement in which President Barack Obama called him "the conscience of the world." The whole of the president's eloquent tribute will appear as a foreword to this memorial edition of Night. "Like millions of admirers, I first came to know Elie through his account of the horror he endured during the Holocaust simply because he was Jewish," wrote the president. In 1986, when Wiesel received the Nobel Peace Prize, the Norwegian Nobel Committee wrote, "Elie Wiesel was rescued from the ashes of Auschwitz after storm and fire had ravaged his life. In time he realized that his life could have purpose: that he was to be a witness, the one who would pass on the account of what had happened so that the dead would not have died in vain and so the living could learn." Night, which has sold millions of copies around the world, is the very embodiment of that conviction. It is written in simple, understated language, yet it is emotionally devastating, never to be forgotten. Born in the town of Sighet, Transylvania, Wiesel was a teenager when he and his family were deported to Auschwitz and then Buchenwald. Night is the shattering record of his memories of the death of his mother, father, and little sister, Tsipora; the death of his own innocence; and his despair as a deeply observant Jew confronting the absolute evil of man. "Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp, that turned my life into one long night," writes Wiesel. "Never shall I forget . . . even were I condemned to live as long as God Himself." These words are etched into the wall of the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. Far more than a chronicle of the sadistic realm of the camps, Night also addresses many of the philosophical and personal questions implicit in any serious consideration of the Holocaust. The memorial edition of Night includes the unpublished text of a speech that Wiesel delivered before the United Nations General Assembly on the sixtieth anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz entitled "Will the World Ever Know." These remarks powerfully resonate with Night and with subsequent acts of genocide.


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A memorial edition of Elie Wiesel's seminal memoir of surviving the Nazi death camps, with tributes by President Obama and Samantha Power When Elie Wiesel died in July 2016, the White House issued a memorial statement in which President Barack Obama called him "the conscience of the world." The whole of the president's eloquent tribute will appear as a foreword to this memo A memorial edition of Elie Wiesel's seminal memoir of surviving the Nazi death camps, with tributes by President Obama and Samantha Power When Elie Wiesel died in July 2016, the White House issued a memorial statement in which President Barack Obama called him "the conscience of the world." The whole of the president's eloquent tribute will appear as a foreword to this memorial edition of Night. "Like millions of admirers, I first came to know Elie through his account of the horror he endured during the Holocaust simply because he was Jewish," wrote the president. In 1986, when Wiesel received the Nobel Peace Prize, the Norwegian Nobel Committee wrote, "Elie Wiesel was rescued from the ashes of Auschwitz after storm and fire had ravaged his life. In time he realized that his life could have purpose: that he was to be a witness, the one who would pass on the account of what had happened so that the dead would not have died in vain and so the living could learn." Night, which has sold millions of copies around the world, is the very embodiment of that conviction. It is written in simple, understated language, yet it is emotionally devastating, never to be forgotten. Born in the town of Sighet, Transylvania, Wiesel was a teenager when he and his family were deported to Auschwitz and then Buchenwald. Night is the shattering record of his memories of the death of his mother, father, and little sister, Tsipora; the death of his own innocence; and his despair as a deeply observant Jew confronting the absolute evil of man. "Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp, that turned my life into one long night," writes Wiesel. "Never shall I forget . . . even were I condemned to live as long as God Himself." These words are etched into the wall of the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. Far more than a chronicle of the sadistic realm of the camps, Night also addresses many of the philosophical and personal questions implicit in any serious consideration of the Holocaust. The memorial edition of Night includes the unpublished text of a speech that Wiesel delivered before the United Nations General Assembly on the sixtieth anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz entitled "Will the World Ever Know." These remarks powerfully resonate with Night and with subsequent acts of genocide.

30 review for Night: A Memoir (The Night Trilogy #1)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sasha Alsberg

    "Our lives no longer belong to us alone; they belong to all those who need us desperately." - Elie Wiesel

  2. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    There is little that freaks me out more than the Holocaust. And I'm not belittling it at all with the phrase 'freaks me out.' Growing up in the 1970s and 80s, I felt sufficiently desensitized enough by television violence to be able to gauge how often I need to shake the jiffy pop and run to the bathroom before the program/violence resumes. Elie Wiesel's Night brings me back to my senses, makes me hate the cold hearted bitch I've learned to be. And not by some overtly dramatic rendition of the ho There is little that freaks me out more than the Holocaust. And I'm not belittling it at all with the phrase 'freaks me out.' Growing up in the 1970s and 80s, I felt sufficiently desensitized enough by television violence to be able to gauge how often I need to shake the jiffy pop and run to the bathroom before the program/violence resumes. Elie Wiesel's Night brings me back to my senses, makes me hate the cold hearted bitch I've learned to be. And not by some overtly dramatic rendition of the horrors of life in a concentration camp but more of the LACK of it. The down to the nitty gritty telling of what happened during the year that he was imprisoned. It wasn't going for the kick to the gut reaction, more of a confused, inconceivable retelling of day to day events, and this---this--- is what really makes me shudder and be at a loss for words. Hell, words? Who am I kidding? Try coherent thought. “I would pause at every sentence, and start over and over again. I would conjure up other verbs, other images, other silent cries. It still was not right. But what exactly was “It”? “It” was something elusive, darkly shrouded for fear of being usurped, profaned. All the dictionary had to offer seemed meager, pale lifeless.” His description of his last encounter with his mother and little sister: “An SS came towards us wielding a club. He commanded: “Men to the left! Women to the right!” Eight words spoken quietly, indifferently, without emotion. Eight simple, short words. Yet that was the moment when I left my mother.” Words. The power they can hold is devastating. Yes, not a new thought, not an original one, yet fucking true nonetheless. Buna. Buchenwald. Mengele. Auschwitz. Words, but ones that incite something within. Creepy crawlies or nausea. Fear. I have met only one Holocaust survivor, that I'm aware of. And 'met' is too strong a word. I was working in a store during college and was collecting payment from a customer who handed me the money and flashed his tattoo. I paled. My eyes darted from the faded black green numbers that served as this man's identity to his face and knew that I was just another gawker. That in that one moment I had created a history for this man. No.. he WAS history. Certainly makes you rethink being pissed off that Sbarro's had left the food court. I think that my kids will most likely never meet a survivor. That books like Night and Anne Frank will have to serve as an education, a reminder that THIS, in fact, DID happen and that it is cruel and moronic and downright irresponsible to believe otherwise. I could say that I did have some sense of relief that at least I wasn't alive during this. That I didn't sit back and have some vague understanding of this going on. But, that's not really the case, right? We have Rwanda and Darfur and god knows what other insane situations happening out there---and we're outraged over the price of an iPhone. “For in the end, it is all about memory, its sources and its magnitude, and, of course, its consequences.” So, Elie Wiesel's account, at 112 pages, serves as a powerful, undeniable, testament. As simply stated as that. Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp, that turned my life into one long night seven times sealed. Never shall I forget that smoke. Never shall I forget the small faces of the children whose bodies I saw transformed into smoke under a silent sky. Never shall I forget those flames that consumed my faith forever. Never shall I forget the nocturnal silence that deprived me for all eternity of the desire to live. Never shall I forget those moments that murdered my God and my soul and tuned my dreams to ashes. Never shall I forget those things, even were I condemned to live as long as God Himself. Never. And in the Preface to the New Translation, he says: “And yet still I wonder: Have I used the right words?' For me, yes. Most definitely, yes.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Navessa

    The author, who is actually in the above picture, said it best in the forward; “Only those who experienced Auschwitz know what it was.” I think we can all agree with that. But can we, the reader, even understand what happened there? Can modern men and women comprehend that cursed universe? I’m not entirely sure. I first read this in my eighth grade History class. I was 13. It changed my life. Before this book my world was sunshine and rainbows. My biggest concern was whether or not a boy named Ja The author, who is actually in the above picture, said it best in the forward; “Only those who experienced Auschwitz know what it was.” I think we can all agree with that. But can we, the reader, even understand what happened there? Can modern men and women comprehend that cursed universe? I’m not entirely sure. I first read this in my eighth grade History class. I was 13. It changed my life. Before this book my world was sunshine and rainbows. My biggest concern was whether or not a boy named Jason liked me back. I got mad at my mom when she made me go to bed on time, I complained if I didn’t like what we were having for dinner and I argued about what I was and wasn’t allowed to watch on TV. I thought I knew about WWII. Both of my grandfathers served in it and so my parents wanted to make sure that we understood the sacrifices they made, the things they saw. I watched documentaries about it with my father, the history nerd, listened to the few stories that my grandfathers would tell, but up until that point I had been intentionally sheltered from the horrors of the holocaust. I had only been told in the vaguest terms what had happened, that so many millions of people had been killed, that Hitler and his men had sought to exterminate the Jewish people. My parents wanted to spare me from what exactly that meant until they thought I was mature enough to be able to absorb it. But then I read this. And for the first time in my life I was completely self-aware. I felt like a child, like a complete and utter fool. For what were my “problems” compared to those of this narrator? How “hard” was my life compared to what he endured? What millions of people similarly endured? I now understood my own insignificance in the grand scheme of things and suddenly the reality of the world was a crushing weight. It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. It was dark. It was ugly and unforgiveable. I remember getting really angry when I finished this. Mostly I was angry at the world and at humanity as a whole but I unfairly turned some of that on my father. After all, he hadn’t prepared me for what I found in this book. At one point I even demanded that he explain this…thing to me. He couldn’t. Fifteen years later, my second read of this book has impacted me just as much as the first. There’s this question I kept asking myself while reading. That question, was ‘How?’. I’m sure that ‘Why?’ might seem the more obvious choice here but I couldn’t let myself wander down the rabbit warren that is that question. Madness lies at the end of it. So I’m left with ‘How?’. How did this happen? How did so many average human beings contribute to this? How did the SS working in the camps reach the point that they were physically and mentally able to toss live infants into flames? How were the German girls that lived within smelling distance of Auschwitz able to pass love notes to the soldiers that marched their skeletal prisoners past? How did these same starving prisoners manage to run 20 kilometers in the freezing snow? How could the SS officers that shot them if they stopped on the first day of their death march then shout encouragements to them the next? How could the German citizens near the train tracks throw bread into the prisoners’ cattle cars just to watch them murder each other for it? How could human beings do these things to each other? How? HOW? HOW??? Like my father, I have no answers. And that, I believe, is why many modern humans will never really be able to comprehend the things that happen in this book. Absorb it, yes. Bear witness to it, yes. Understand it? Hopefully never. I finished this at lunch today. And now I’m sitting in my cubicle, glancing at my neighbors and wondering if they’re capable of this kind of depravity. Am I? What would I do to survive? Would I beat my own father to death for the bread in his hand? I hope to God that none of us will ever have to find out the answers to these questions. If you read a single book in your life, this should be it. Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

  4. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

    This book is a hard, righteous slap in the conscience to everyone of good will in the world and should stand as a stark reminder of both: (1) the almost unimaginable brutality that we, as a species, are capable of; and (2) that when it comes to preventing or stopping similar kinds of atrocities or punishing those that seek to perpetrate such crimes, WE ARE OUR BROTHERS' KEEPERS and must take responsibility for what occurs "on our watch." This remarkable story is the powerful and deeply moving acc This book is a hard, righteous slap in the conscience to everyone of good will in the world and should stand as a stark reminder of both: (1) the almost unimaginable brutality that we, as a species, are capable of; and (2) that when it comes to preventing or stopping similar kinds of atrocities or punishing those that seek to perpetrate such crimes, WE ARE OUR BROTHERS' KEEPERS and must take responsibility for what occurs "on our watch." This remarkable story is the powerful and deeply moving account of Ellie Wiesel's personal experiences as a Hungarian Jew who is sent with his entire family to the infamous Nazi concentration camps of Auschwitz and later Buchenwald. The most chilling aspect of the narrative for me was the calm, casual way that so many of the nightmarish events that Elie witnesses were performed. For example, early on in the account, Elie is separated from his Mother and sisters (never to see them again). This life-altering, traumatically painful action is done so quickly and in such an off-handed, bureaucratic manner by the Nazis that trying to grasp the reality of it made me physically sick. That was only the beginning. Elie goes on to chronicle his subsequent attempts not to be separated from his father and the horrors he was forced to witness and endure. Along the road of this terrifying journey, we hear in Elie's own words of the growing disgust of his 13 year old self for both mankind and for God and how he eventually lost completely his own humanity in his resolve to do whatever he had to in order to stay alive. Written in a simple, unsentimental style (which makes the horrors described seem somehow more shocking), this is one of those important life-changing books that I believe everyone should read. HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION!!!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Chris Horsefield

    Upon completion of this book, my mind is as numb as if I had experienced this suffering myself. So much pain and suffering are thrown at you from the pages that one cannot comprehend it all in the right perspective. One can only move forward as the victims in this book did. Step by step, page by page. Initially, numbness is the only way to deal with such anguish. Otherwise one becomes quickly overwhelmed by the images that evoke questions that cannot be answered. And yet, I read this book from t Upon completion of this book, my mind is as numb as if I had experienced this suffering myself. So much pain and suffering are thrown at you from the pages that one cannot comprehend it all in the right perspective. One can only move forward as the victims in this book did. Step by step, page by page. Initially, numbness is the only way to deal with such anguish. Otherwise one becomes quickly overwhelmed by the images that evoke questions that cannot be answered. And yet, I read this book from the comfort of a warm home and a full stomach. Imagine the impact if it were otherwise. Imagine being forced from your home to live in barracks, living off soup and bread, forced to go outside in the winter without a jacket, and perform manual labor from dawn to dusk with the smell of a crematorium in your backyard. How many of us could endure this for just one day, let alone, for years? What would this do to us physically and more important, what would this do to us mentally? Yet, we witness in this book the miracle of the prisoner's survival. The strength and raw endurance of the human spirit. We must be reminded of this this glorious strength, but also reminded that it was the weakness of the human spirit that inflicted these crimes on others. Humanity has the capability of extreme strength, but also of extreme weakness (which often hides under the guise of self-righteousness and need for power over others). This book is necessary in order to remind us of this. These things must not be forgotten. Read this book even if you think you have read enough of the Holocaust and of pain and suffering. Every book that I have read about the Holocaust offers something new including this one. Read it as a memorial and a tribute. Read it as a reminder of how fortunate we are to have a free society and how we must preserve this freedom at all costs. There are those who would like to take it away. Fascism is alive and well. I started reading Holocaust novels after reading Edelweiss Pirates ‘Operation Einstein'. (Edelweiss Pirates #1) [bookcover:(Edelweiss Pirates #1) ‘Operation Einstein' they are must reads in this genre are of course Number the Stars Number the stars. I enjoyed that authors other works. That novel was 'The Book' that turned me onto YA WW2 novels. They allow us to reflect on our own lives, learn history and become better people.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Brina

    The first time I read Night by Eli Wiesel I was in an eighth grade religious school class. At that time it had recently become a law in my state to teach the Holocaust as part of the general curriculum, and, as a result, my classmates and I were the torchbearers to tell people to never forget and were inundated with quality Holocaust literature. Yet even though middle school students can comprehend Night, the subject matter at times is still way over their heads. The book itself although a prize The first time I read Night by Eli Wiesel I was in an eighth grade religious school class. At that time it had recently become a law in my state to teach the Holocaust as part of the general curriculum, and, as a result, my classmates and I were the torchbearers to tell people to never forget and were inundated with quality Holocaust literature. Yet even though middle school students can comprehend Night, the subject matter at times is still way over their heads. The book itself although a prize winner blended into the religious school class and receded to the back of my memory bank. These years later I have been enjoying a religious lifestyle for my adult life. Upon hearing that Nobel Laureate Eli Wiesel passed away recently I thought now was as good of a time as any to reread his award winning account of surviving the Holocaust. Although only 120 pages in length, Wiesel's memoir of life in the concentration camps is one of the most powerful pieces of literature that most people will ever read. Wiesel discusses his relationship with G-D and talks about his conflicting feelings in regards to taking care of his father while in Buna and Birkenau camps. It was not easy to digest. Wiesel also writes in length about observing Rosh Hashanah while in the concentration camps. Why praise the Almighty for one's deliverance if one's existence is spent as a prisoner living on crusts of bread? It was easy to forget G-D or denounce His existence, even for the most religious Jews. These passages brought me close to tears. On this eve of Rosh Hashanah I can thank the Blessed Creator that I enjoy a comfortable lifestyle. Even though the world is far from perfect, my family lives in a land of freedom and are free to worship as we choose. Eli Wiesel brought Holocaust awareness to many people and earned the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986. His passing is indicative that few survivors are still with us and we should hear their stories while we still can. Night is a painful yet necessary read, and by reading it I can go into the new year thanking G-D for my right to live in relative peace and prosperity.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Candi

    "I was the accuser, God the accused. My eyes had opened and I was alone, terribly alone in a world without God, without man. Without love or mercy." These words and this book just tore at my heart. I have seen Night, have heard of Night for many years now. I waited to read it, unsure what I could possibly gain from reading another account of the evil existing among our fellow human beings – I will become enraged and depressed. I can’t change history. I will be forced to examine my own faith and I "I was the accuser, God the accused. My eyes had opened and I was alone, terribly alone in a world without God, without man. Without love or mercy." These words and this book just tore at my heart. I have seen Night, have heard of Night for many years now. I waited to read it, unsure what I could possibly gain from reading another account of the evil existing among our fellow human beings – I will become enraged and depressed. I can’t change history. I will be forced to examine my own faith and I don’t want to do that. But then I discovered that my son was assigned this book as part of his summer reading for a high school English class. What do I want him to learn from this book, from this dark piece of our not too distant past? Should he pass it by so that he doesn’t have to experience the horrifying details, feel the terrible injustice in this world? No. I do not want him to be a passive bystander. I want him to understand that narrow-mindedness, hatred and bigotry exist despite his fortunate and protected upbringing. Other human beings are right now suffering unimaginable sorrow, are being cruelly maltreated. History does repeat itself, perhaps with varying backgrounds, different groups of individuals. We can’t let this happen. My son needs to read this book. His children need to read this book someday. I need to read this book. I did. I read this book and I cried. I was angry. I was disgusted with humanity. I understood Elie’s words above, why he felt such despair. Everyone should read this book at least once. This is a slim book with a tremendous message. "Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere."

  8. 4 out of 5

    Martine

    This book has garnered so many five-star reviews and deals with such important subject matter that it almost feels like an act of heresy to give it a mere four stars. Yet that is exactly what I'm going to do, for while Night is a chilling account of the Holocaust and the dehumanisation and brutalisation of the human spirit under extreme circumstances, the fact remains that I've read better ones. Better written ones, and more insightful ones, too. Night is Elie Wiesel's somewhat fictionalised acco This book has garnered so many five-star reviews and deals with such important subject matter that it almost feels like an act of heresy to give it a mere four stars. Yet that is exactly what I'm going to do, for while Night is a chilling account of the Holocaust and the dehumanisation and brutalisation of the human spirit under extreme circumstances, the fact remains that I've read better ones. Better written ones, and more insightful ones, too. Night is Elie Wiesel's somewhat fictionalised account of the year he spent at Auschwitz and Buchenwald. It's a chilling story about his experiences in and between concentration camps, his gradual loss of faith (he was a very observant Jew who obviously wondered where God was while his people were being exterminated), and his feelings of guilt when he realised that his struggle for survival was making him insensitive towards his dying father. It's gruesome, chilling material, and I felt very quiet after having read it. Yet I also felt vaguely unsatisfied with the book. I wanted more detail. I wanted fleshed-out writing rather than a succession of meaningful one-line paragraphs. I wanted less heavy-handed symbolism (the book very much centres on troubled father-and-son relationships, to echo the one central Father-and-Son one) and more actual feeling. I wanted a writer (and a translator) who knew better than to call an SS officer 'an SS'. And most of all, I wanted a less abrupt ending. I wanted to ask Wiesel what happened in the immediate aftermath of the liberation of Buchenwald. I wanted to ask him what happened to his leg, on which he marched for several gruesome days just days after having undergone an operation, and how he picked up the pieces afterwards, and why on earth his two eldest sisters, who died in Auschwitz as well as his mother and younger sister, never warranted more than a single mention. The latter was an example of seriously shoddy writing, I thought. Perhaps my questions were answered in the original version of Night, which never got published. In his introduction to the new English translation of Night, Wiesel mentions that the book as it is today is a severely abridged version of a much longer Yiddish original called And the World Remained Silent. I think I can see why the original wasn't published (quite apart from the fact that the world wasn't ready yet for concentration camp literature, the few quotes provided in the introduction make for heavy reading). The abridged version definitely seems more readable than the full-length one, and does an admirable job getting the facts across. Even so, I think the publishers might have gone a step too far in abridging the book to the extent that they did. No doubt the very brevity of Night is one of the reasons why it's so popular today, but personally, I would have liked to see a middle road between the original (detailed) manuscript and the incredibly spare barebones version sold now. Don't get me wrong, the abridged version is effective, but as far as I'm concerned, it's the Holocaust for people with short attention spans. I prefer Primo Levi and Ella Lingens-Reiner's more complete accounts of life in the camps myself, not to mention several Dutch books which sadly never got translated into other languages. But still. Night is an important book, and one that deserves to be widely read. In fact, one that should be widely read, by people of all ages and nationalities, to prevent nightmare like this ever happening again.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lyn

    Terrifying. I have read two books that described a nightmare, painted a picture of hell. The second was Blood Meridian, or the Evening Redness in the West by Cormac McCarthy and first is Night. I still think of this book sometimes and shudder and I realize that evil is never too far buried in us. The scene where the line of doomed prisoners splits in two with Mengela conducting, a perverse parody of the last judgment seems ripped from Dante.

  10. 5 out of 5

    °°°·.°·..·°¯°·._.· ʜᴇʟᴇɴ Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος ·._.·°¯°·.·° .·°°° ★·.·´¯`·.·★ Ⓥⓔⓡⓝⓤⓢ Ⓟⓞⓡⓣⓘⓣⓞⓡ Ⓐⓡⓒⓐⓝⓤⓢ Ταμετούρο Αμ

    Όπως αναφέρεται στο επίμετρο αυτού του συγκλονιστικού βιβλίου όταν πρωτοεκδόθηκε το 1956 στην Αργεντινή (στη μητρική γλώσσα του συγγραφέα) είχε τίτλο: «Και ο κόσμος σιωπούσε.....» Θεωρώ πως δεν θα μπορούσε να υπάρξει πιο αντιπροσωπευτικός τίτλος για την ιστορία του βιβλίου αλλά και για την παγκόσμια ανθρώπινη ιστορία. «Η νύχτα» του Ελί Βιζέλ είναι ένα αφηγηματικό ντοκουμέντο για το Ολοκαύτωμα. Όταν άνοιξαν οι πύλες της κολάσεως για εκατομμύρια Εβραίους στα στρατόπεδα συγκέντρωσης-εξόντωσης και πέρ Όπως αναφέρεται στο επίμετρο αυτού του συγκλονιστικού βιβλίου όταν πρωτοεκδόθηκε το 1956 στην Αργεντινή (στη μητρική γλώσσα του συγγραφέα) είχε τίτλο: «Και ο κόσμος σιωπούσε.....» Θεωρώ πως δεν θα μπορούσε να υπάρξει πιο αντιπροσωπευτικός τίτλος για την ιστορία του βιβλίου αλλά και για την παγκόσμια ανθρώπινη ιστορία. «Η νύχτα» του Ελί Βιζέλ είναι ένα αφηγηματικό ντοκουμέντο για το Ολοκαύτωμα. Όταν άνοιξαν οι πύλες της κολάσεως για εκατομμύρια Εβραίους στα στρατόπεδα συγκέντρωσης-εξόντωσης και πέρασε πάνω απο ανθρώπινες σάρκες και ψυχές το αιματοβαμμένο τρένο της ιστορίας κατά τον Β´Παγκόσμιο πόλεμο. Ο ακατανόητος ναζισμός έχει πρωταρχικό σκοπό των αφανισμό των Εβραίων απο πρόσωπου γης. Η ιστορία του βιβλίου αναφέρεται στους Εβραίους της Ουγγαρίας - τελευταία μεγάλη κοινότητα της Ευρώπης- και τον εκτοπισμό της στο Άουσβιτς. Οι ναζί σπαταλούν χρόνο και δυνάμεις για να λυτρώσουν τον κόσμο απο το Κακό. Ένας λυτρωτικός αντισημιτισμός τη στιγμή που ο πόλεμος έχει ουσιαστικά κριθεί εις βάρος τους. Και μετά τη Νύχτα.... ή και πριν απο αυτή ξημέρωσε μια κατάμαυρη ημέρα για την ανθρωπότητα. Άπειρες νύχτες του παρελθόντος και αμέτρητα ξημερώματα του παρόντος και του μέλλοντος θα επικρατούν για πάντα στον πλανήτη των ανθρώπων. Ο Βιζέλ διηγείται την δύναμη του κακού και τα βάσανα των θυμάτων που έπληξαν για πάντα την ανθρώπινη συνείδηση. Διατείνεται και πολύ σωστά πράττει πως έγραψε το βιβλιο τούτο ως ανάμνηση της μακάβριας και τρομακτικής τρέλας που εισέβαλε τότε στην ιστορία και τις ψυχές για να αποτρέψει την επανάληψη της. Για να γιατρευτεί ίσως η ανθρωπότητα απο την εθισμένη έλξη της προς τη βία. Κι όμως... ήταν απλώς μια στάση του Κακού που επικρατεί αιώνια για να κοιτάξει μέσα στους ομαδικούς τάφους και να ευφρανθεί περισσότερο βλέποντας πως οι μελλοθάνατοι έσκαβαν με τα χέρια τους, οι ίδιοι, τους δικούς τους λάκκους. Αυτοί, οι δυο φορές σκοτωμένοι απο τους πρεσβευτές του Κακού, τους υποκριτές, τους αδυσώπητους στυλοβάτες του κόσμου που χειραγωγούν την κοινωνία και καταφέρνουν πάντα να καθαγιάζονται απο τη λαϊκή ευαισθησία. Όλοι οι παλιάνθρωποι του πλανήτη ενωμένοι σε έναν στρατό. Τρομερά πλούσιο δειγματολόγιο θα βλέπαμε. Απο μικρά παιδάκια γαλουχημένα με μίσος, κλέφτες δημοτικούς υπαλλήλους, ψεύτες υπουργούς και κυβερνήτες,πουλημένους γιατρούς και δικηγόρους, διεφθαρμένες κυρίες φιλανθρωπικών ιδρυμάτων, νεαρές κοπέλες προστατευμένες απο ηλίθιους πλούσιους, απατεώνες διευθυντές επιχειρήσεων, παρασημοφορημένους πρεσβευτές, αποικιακούς υπαλλήλους, εν ολίγοις, επίσης, όλες οι οργανωμένες δυνάμεις του κράτους, η απάτη του Κλήρου, ο Στρατός, η Λαϊκή Παιδεία. Το σύμπαν της στρατιάς των θριαμβευτών της επιστήμης και της αμοιβαίας γνώσης, που στην πορεία του χρόνου και στη θεωρία της εξέλιξης οι ευθύνες που τους βαραίνουν κατά της δικαιοσύνης και της ανθρωπιάς πρέπει να μετρηθούν με ζυγαριά παλιανθρωπιάς, και να χαριστεί στον καθέναν το ακριβές βάρος της βρόμας του προς βρώση. (Περιττώματα). Ποια η διαφορά των ναζί απο τους αναλφάβητους σε κάποια πολιτεία της Αμερικής που προσεύχονται στο θεό την ίδια ώρα που λιώνουν στην εκμετάλλευση νέγρους στη Γουατεμάλα. Ποια η διαφορά της δουλοκτητικής ηθικής κοινωνίας απο τους μισθωτούς σκλάβους. Ποια η διαφορά ενός αρχηγού του Μπούχενβαλντ απο έναν αρχηγό γαλέρας. Είναι καλύτερος ο θάνατος με βόμβες παρά με βέλη και τόξα; Το βασανιστήριο του ηλεκτροσόκ αποδίδει καλύτερα απο τα βασανιστήρια με ποντίκια των Κινέζων; Οι δολοφονίες της ιεράς εξέτασης ήταν πιο φρικτές απο τις «αντιτρομοκρατικές» δολοφονίες με σύγχρονα όπλα; Αν η ανθρωπότητα ήθελε να επικρατήσει το Καλό δεν θα το εξόρκιζε. Δεν θα το στιγμάτιζε με θρησκευτικούς κανόνες και τιμωρίες. Πρέπει να υπαγορευτεί απο πανάρχαιους θεικούς κανόνες το Καλό; Και στην τελική το Κακό μας συστήνει και μας παραπέμπει στο Καλό, αφού αν δεν κάνουμε αυτό ή εκείνο, απειλούμαστε με αιώνια κόλαση. Το γενικό νόημα του κόσμου με βάση την πνευματική και υλική πρόοδο παραμένει αιώνες αναλλοίωτο. Εν κατακλείδι, οποιαδήποτε απόπειρα αντίδρασης ή επαγρύπνησης πνεύματος και προσωπικότητας ενάντια στις δυνάμεις που πάντα εξουσίαζαν τον κόσμο εκμηδενίζεται και καταστρέφεται. Λαοί ολόκληροι αποδεκατίστηκαν, οι θρησκείες εκκαθάρισαν τον κόσμο. Λαμπρά μυαλά και μεγαλοφυΐες βασανίστηκαν, κάηκαν, κρεμάστηκαν, γδάρθηκαν στο όνομα των αντιδράσεων που μπορούν να λυτρώσουν. Οπότε Νύχτα....Νύχτα...Νύχτα... Βαθύ βελούδινο σκοτάδι. Υπήρχε, υπάρχει και θα υπάρχει. Κι ο κόσμος σιωπούσε....και θα σιωπά. Καλή ανάγνωση. Πολλούς ασπασμούς.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay - Traveling Sister

    5 stars......I am at a loss for words.......upon finishing this memoir, I am so full of intense emotion yet I feel empty at the same time...... This is a DEEPLY moving and powerful book about the author's experience in concentration camps and the atrocities that happened during the Holocaust. Words cannot describe how I truly feel about what I read on these pages. It is impossible for us, as readers, to truly fathom this piece of history, unless we lived it. I hope everyone takes the time to read 5 stars......I am at a loss for words.......upon finishing this memoir, I am so full of intense emotion yet I feel empty at the same time...... This is a DEEPLY moving and powerful book about the author's experience in concentration camps and the atrocities that happened during the Holocaust. Words cannot describe how I truly feel about what I read on these pages. It is impossible for us, as readers, to truly fathom this piece of history, unless we lived it. I hope everyone takes the time to read this 120 page memoir at some point in their lives. The author was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986 calling him a "messenger to mankind" for his written works. We simply cannot risk forgetting.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Kat

    I teach this book yearly, but my students seemed distant from the true reality of the story. When I use the Holocaust Museum's interactive of Lola Rein's dress, it hits them. Real people, real history. The immediacy of the tragedy that was Wiesel's then comes to life in a way that a junior or senior can grasp. I also tell the story of my friend, Ida, and her "no grandparents". That is the hardest part for me as it is so personal. She was the daughter of survivors - she had no grandparents and I I teach this book yearly, but my students seemed distant from the true reality of the story. When I use the Holocaust Museum's interactive of Lola Rein's dress, it hits them. Real people, real history. The immediacy of the tragedy that was Wiesel's then comes to life in a way that a junior or senior can grasp. I also tell the story of my friend, Ida, and her "no grandparents". That is the hardest part for me as it is so personal. She was the daughter of survivors - she had no grandparents and I gave her mine. The sharing of my friend with my beloved grandmother and grandfather was one of the true blessings of my life and our lives were enriched through the immense addition to our family. I was also blessed by her adding us to her home and her celebrations. My faith was enlarged. This is a powerful book - a simple one to read, but a difficult one to comprehend. Engagingly written and honest to the core - even the difficult, prickly human parts that would embarrass anyone to reveal -- this is the heart of humanity's difficult path - how do we grow if we can't love one another for the similarities and the differences. I wish I could say there was no more genocide, but that would be a dreamer's lie. Bless this with a read and light a candle in our darkness. Also, go and view the dress at the Holocaust Museum website - you will leave changed.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Nat

    “Those who kept silent yesterday will remain silent tomorrow.” My first reading of Elie Wiesel's Night occurred during this year's Holocaust Memorial Day. Night is Elie Wiesel's masterpiece, a candid, horrific, and deeply poignant autobiographical account of his survival as a teenager in the Nazi death camps. This new translation by Marion Wiesel, Elie's wife and frequent translator, presents this seminal memoir in the language and spirit truest to the author's original intent. And in a substantiv “Those who kept silent yesterday will remain silent tomorrow.” My first reading of Elie Wiesel's Night occurred during this year's Holocaust Memorial Day. Night is Elie Wiesel's masterpiece, a candid, horrific, and deeply poignant autobiographical account of his survival as a teenager in the Nazi death camps. This new translation by Marion Wiesel, Elie's wife and frequent translator, presents this seminal memoir in the language and spirit truest to the author's original intent. And in a substantive new preface, Elie reflects on the enduring importance of Night and his lifelong, passionate dedication to ensuring that the world never forgets man's capacity for inhumanity to man. Words cannot begin to comprehend the plight of suffering and cruelty revealed in this book that had me on the verge of breaking into sobs page after page, so I'll let the writing speak for itself by sharing moments and passages that cannot be forgotten in time: This here is exactly why I refuse to participate with anything regarding Germany; the world is complicit in its indifference.  “...my hatred remains our only link today.” It pained me beyond words to see my people fall under the “this surely won’t happen to me” spell. And the effect spreads like a snowball, gathering more and more edicts as the days go by. Nothing gets my blood boiling quite like seeing the numerous acts of silence committed by these citizens. People love to victim-blame the Jews by asking the distasteful question of why they didn't stand up to the oppressor... But a more pressing notion, for me, is why those German citizens, watching idly by in the face of atrocity, didn't stand up to their fellow Nazis…  I was appalled from start to finish with the above. Not only do they watch idly by from a short distance away, but to then FLIRT with them… You think you've reached the peak of cruelty, but then you read on: Experiencing numbness in order to remain sane at the sight of tragedy. This French girl's wisdom has stayed in mind, in particular, because the next paragraph describes an out-of-this-world experience wherein Elie Wiesel stumbles upon her eons later: But the most painful of all remains to be the relationship portrayed between father and son that keeps both alive in the face of inhumanity. Many more sorrowful revelations are shared within the pages of this must-read. Elie Wiesel's raw written voice commemorates all that must never be forgotten. My arms gathered with goosebumps at that because the date I was reading this book was April 11th. I'll end this review by sharing my favorite Elie Wiesel quote: “The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference.” Support creators you love. Buy a Coffee for nat (bookspoils) with Ko-fi.com/bookspoils This review and more can be found on my blog.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Councillor

    Night is perhaps one of the most remarkable, harrowing and haunting accounts of the events in the Nazi Germany concentration camps Auschwitz and Buchenwald. I read this powerful work only a few days before news of the author's, Elie Wiesel's, death were announced, and both shocked me. The first, because unless you have experienced it for yourself, you will never be able to realize the full extent of what happened in the Second World War with all its different facets and emotions, and the latter, Night is perhaps one of the most remarkable, harrowing and haunting accounts of the events in the Nazi Germany concentration camps Auschwitz and Buchenwald. I read this powerful work only a few days before news of the author's, Elie Wiesel's, death were announced, and both shocked me. The first, because unless you have experienced it for yourself, you will never be able to realize the full extent of what happened in the Second World War with all its different facets and emotions, and the latter, because with Elie Wiesel, a remarkable man has left this planet who fought for memorizing the Holocaust, who fought against violence, suppression and racism. Perhaps you will not find the most eloquent, the most artful language in this work of literature, but that's nothing you should expect to find in a book dealing with something as frightening, as horrifying, as real as the Holocaust. In his nonfictional book, Elie Wiesel writes about his own survival in the concentration camps, about reflections of the father-son relationship with his father, about humanity and inhumanity. It's a book everyone should read, because ultimately, the Second World War is something everyone should remember. Forgetting would be the worst way to deal with it. A lot of people, more people than would be good, claim that it has all been "so long ago", is so completely irrelevant nowadays, just belongs to this boring stuff people are tortured with in school because it belongs to this dry nonsense called "history". I usually don't tell people they're wrong ... usually. Because in this case, they can't be more wrong. The Holocaust needs to be remembered, because if humans forget the mistakes they did, they will tend to repeat them. And I think everyone can agree that the Holocaust should never, never be repeated. This is a book which is incredibly difficult to review, just like it is difficult to read - not for its language or its style; I read it in one sitting in the course of three or four hours - but rather for the horrifying events Elie Wiesel talks about. I can only recommend to read this book to everyone, independent from how much you already know about the topic. And on a final note: Rest in Peace, Elie Wiesel.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Orsodimondo

    COSA È PIÙ ETERNO DELL’INFERNO? L'uomo è più forte e più grande di dio, anche più buono e misericordioso. Deluso da Adamo ed Eva, dio li scacciò dal paradiso. Deluso dalla generazione di Noè, s'inventò il diluvio universale. Deluso da Sodoma, fece piovere dal cielo il fuoco e lo zolfo. Per non farsi raggiungere dagli uomini che costruivano la torre che doveva raggiungere il cielo e portarli più vicino a lui, confuse le loro lingue e s'inventò Babele. E invece, gli uomini che hanno riempito i cam COSA È PIÙ ETERNO DELL’INFERNO? L'uomo è più forte e più grande di dio, anche più buono e misericordioso. Deluso da Adamo ed Eva, dio li scacciò dal paradiso. Deluso dalla generazione di Noè, s'inventò il diluvio universale. Deluso da Sodoma, fece piovere dal cielo il fuoco e lo zolfo. Per non farsi raggiungere dagli uomini che costruivano la torre che doveva raggiungere il cielo e portarli più vicino a lui, confuse le loro lingue e s'inventò Babele. E invece, gli uomini che hanno riempito i campi di concentramento, traditi e abbandonati da dio, che li ha lasciati torturare, morire di fame, bruciare, gassare, sgozzare tra loro, che fanno? Pregano dio e lodano il suo nome (p. 69). Un dio che si manifesta per mettere alla prova, vediamo se siete in grado di dominare i cattivi istinti e di uccidere il satana che è in voi, castigando spietatamente gli uomini (p. 49-50). Dio che si fa battere da Hitler, l'unico che ha veramente mantenuto le sue promesse, tutte le sue promesse col popolo ebraico (p. 81)

  16. 4 out of 5

    Heidi The Hippie Reader

    Night is Elie Wiesel's memoir about his experiences during the Holocaust. It is shocking and sad, but worth reading because of the power of Wiesel's witnessing one of humanity's darkest chapters and his confession on how it changed him. In the new introduction to the ebook version I read, Wiesel talked about the difficulty he had putting words to his experience. "Convinced that this period in history would be judged one day, I knew that I must bear witness. I also knew that, while I had many thin Night is Elie Wiesel's memoir about his experiences during the Holocaust. It is shocking and sad, but worth reading because of the power of Wiesel's witnessing one of humanity's darkest chapters and his confession on how it changed him. In the new introduction to the ebook version I read, Wiesel talked about the difficulty he had putting words to his experience. "Convinced that this period in history would be judged one day, I knew that I must bear witness. I also knew that, while I had many things to say, I did not have the words to say them." pg. 7, introduction The original version of Night was written in Yiddish. I wish I knew enough Yiddish to read it. There's something powerful about reading books in their original form. Wiesel closes his introduction with his reasons for writing this book: "For the survivor who chooses to testify, it is clear: his duty is to bear witness for the dead and for the living. He has no right to deprive future generations of a past that belongs to our collective memory. To forget would be not only dangerous but offensive; to forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time." pg 12, introduction. Even though a member of his community warned Wiesel's village about the horrors that awaited them, they didn't believe him. After they were placed in a ghetto, the Jewish population of Sighet thought that the worst was behind them. "Most people thought that we would remain in the ghetto until the end of the war, until the arrival of the Red Army. Afterward everything would be as before. The ghetto was ruled by neither German nor Jew; it was ruled by delusion." pg 26, ebook. If I had been in their place, I don't think that I would have acted any differently. How could one possibly imagine the horrors that they were going to face? Wiesel is starved, overworked and beaten in the concentration camps. He loses more than his family and faith: "One day when I was able to get up, I decided to look at myself in the mirror on the opposite wall. I had not seen myself since the ghetto. From the depths of the mirror, a corpse was contemplating me. The look in his eyes as he gazed at me has never left me." pgs 110-111 ebook. Another Holocaust survivor's memoir that I highly recommend is Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. Never forget.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Erika

    I’ve been meaning to read Night for years and finally picked it up shortly after hearing about Eli Wiesel’s death. Night is not a book that I can review. It defies critique, and even analyzing it from my sunny porch with a cup of coffee, feels wrong. Yet it’s the reasons that Night belongs outside of criticism that make it so important. There is the Holocaust and then there is the world’s relationship with the Holocaust. By the end of the 60s that relationship encompassed adult children of survi I’ve been meaning to read Night for years and finally picked it up shortly after hearing about Eli Wiesel’s death. Night is not a book that I can review. It defies critique, and even analyzing it from my sunny porch with a cup of coffee, feels wrong. Yet it’s the reasons that Night belongs outside of criticism that make it so important. There is the Holocaust and then there is the world’s relationship with the Holocaust. By the end of the 60s that relationship encompassed adult children of survivors, scholars, deniers, apologists, voyeurs, and people who hold their ears the moment the subject comes up. Night was written before any of that. It isn’t influenced by other Holocaust literature; instead it is a foundational text, unvarnished source material describing one of most terrible things our species ever did. For that reason, I believe it should be required reading for everyone. Night is short and the writing is simple. It feels stark, honest, and hallowed in the way of powerful memorials. In the preface of my edition, Wiesel writes: “There are those who tell me that I survived in order to write this text. I am not convinced. I don’t how I survived; I was weak, rather shy; I did nothing to save myself. A miracle? Certainly not. If heaven could or would perform a miracle for me, why not for others more deserving than myself? It was nothing more than chance. However, having survived, I needed to give some meaning to my survival. …I knew that I must bear witness. Wiesel was a brilliant light in the darkness he depicts so powerfully. His obit in the New York Times, puts it well, “There may have been better chroniclers who evoked the hellish minutiae of the German death machine. There were arguably more illuminating philosophers. But no single figure was able to combine Mr. Wiesel’s moral urgency with his magnetism, which emanated from his deeply lined face and eyes as unrelievable melancholy.” When I started this review I was going to post a famous photo of him as part of a group of emaciated prisoners on the day that Buchenwald was liberated. But after reading that beautiful quote, I would rather close with this photo of the day he won the Nobel Peace Prize, which illustrates the knowledge he gave the world rather than the darkness he endured.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Steven Godin

    From the first few sentences, to the final closings words, I did not move. Elie Wiesel had my complete attention, and total respect, for the immense courage it must have taken to relive the horrors he went through in writing this book. Harrowing and chilling but told with great compassion, his struggle for survival during the holocaust is almost too unbearable to contemplate. But this has to be read, and everyone should do so, it makes all the mundane things in life seem far more important. Afte From the first few sentences, to the final closings words, I did not move. Elie Wiesel had my complete attention, and total respect, for the immense courage it must have taken to relive the horrors he went through in writing this book. Harrowing and chilling but told with great compassion, his struggle for survival during the holocaust is almost too unbearable to contemplate. But this has to be read, and everyone should do so, it makes all the mundane things in life seem far more important. After the last page was done, I looked out the window of my apartment, up at the sky, down in the street, the noise of the city, the people walking by. The life, the freedom, the hugs, the kisses. What overriding joy.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    A poignant and unforgettable 5 star read. “Human suffering anywhere concerns men and women everywhere.” ― Elie Wiesel, Night It's been years since I've read this book, but as my son needed to read it for school, I decided to read it with him. I'm glad I did. Night, which is one man's tragic yet remarkable survival of the Holocaust, is a powerful, shocking, heartbreaking, poignant, yet triumph-of-the-soul biography. This book speaks to humanity about the atrocities man is capable of committing. It A poignant and unforgettable 5 star read. “Human suffering anywhere concerns men and women everywhere.” ― Elie Wiesel, Night It's been years since I've read this book, but as my son needed to read it for school, I decided to read it with him. I'm glad I did. Night, which is one man's tragic yet remarkable survival of the Holocaust, is a powerful, shocking, heartbreaking, poignant, yet triumph-of-the-soul biography. This book speaks to humanity about the atrocities man is capable of committing. It also demonstrates the resilience of the human spirit and the capacity for good to rise above evil and make a difference. If you haven't read Night yet, I highly encourage you to read it. This is one of those life-changing books everyone should read.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kelli

    This is not a review. I am not worthy to review this book. This is my third time reading Night, having read it as a requirement in both high school and college. I picked it up at the library because it was upright on a shelf and I noticed it had a new preface by the author. I have read that preface four times so far. The PREFACE is that important, that thought-provoking. I am speechless. I am awestruck by the tremendous person that Elie Wiesel is. The story is a heartbreaking, terrifying account This is not a review. I am not worthy to review this book. This is my third time reading Night, having read it as a requirement in both high school and college. I picked it up at the library because it was upright on a shelf and I noticed it had a new preface by the author. I have read that preface four times so far. The PREFACE is that important, that thought-provoking. I am speechless. I am awestruck by the tremendous person that Elie Wiesel is. The story is a heartbreaking, terrifying account of unimaginable suffering that must be read and remembered. 5 stars every time.

  21. 5 out of 5

    jessica

    there are simply no words which i could write that would do this book the justice it deserves. i am speechless. 5 stars

  22. 4 out of 5

    Vanessa

    Wow this book..can't express the feelings during my reading of this, so enthralling, captivating but oh the horrors! Unimaginable horrors. Tore my heart out into a million pieces. I regret not having read this earlier, this is a true account of Elie Wiesel as a young Jewish boy who has no foreseeable knowledge and understanding of what was around the corner when his family are forced to flee from their home in Romania, and the unknown horrors that awaited them. Even though I've read and have stu Wow this book..can't express the feelings during my reading of this, so enthralling, captivating but oh the horrors! Unimaginable horrors. Tore my heart out into a million pieces. I regret not having read this earlier, this is a true account of Elie Wiesel as a young Jewish boy who has no foreseeable knowledge and understanding of what was around the corner when his family are forced to flee from their home in Romania, and the unknown horrors that awaited them. Even though I've read and have studied many of these stories of the Holocaust and of the concentration camps in Auschwitz, I was still surprised how shocked I was by the atrocities and how it was written made me shed so many more tears and emotions that I didn't know could still exist. This book is a must read and deserves it's nobel peace prize. I felt so connected to the story and to Elie that I had trouble sleeping. What a tragedy it is to have lost this true humanitarian treasure last year and will forever be grateful that this book and others like this exist. Thank you sir I hope you find your peace in heaven and find your family again. 5 tear soaked stars

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sean Gray

    Night, was possibly one of the worst books I've ever read. I was suprised when I logged on to find, Five star reviews of this book. Yeah, so it was written by a holocaust survivor. It doesn't make it well written. From a literary standpoing, purely. It was terrible. As Ms. Hawley would say, It lacked sentence variation. Maybe it was better when it was written in German? Maybe he should have let a "professional" writer, write it for him. I'm not bashing him, or his writing. Kind of. His writing n Night, was possibly one of the worst books I've ever read. I was suprised when I logged on to find, Five star reviews of this book. Yeah, so it was written by a holocaust survivor. It doesn't make it well written. From a literary standpoing, purely. It was terrible. As Ms. Hawley would say, It lacked sentence variation. Maybe it was better when it was written in German? Maybe he should have let a "professional" writer, write it for him. I'm not bashing him, or his writing. Kind of. His writing not him. Too me I felt as if it was written by a 10 year old, who repeats everything. And then... And then this... Oh, and then... I mean, the holocaust was and is so tragic, it hardly makes a good setting for a story. And yeah, that was his experience. And his literary inspiration. But maybe we just shouldn't be required to read it. And I also learned it was on Oparah's book club list. WHAT!? But anywho. My opinion seems to be the only one of it's sort. Maybe I'm just wrong?

  24. 4 out of 5

    Tom Mathews

    July 2, 2016: On hearing of the passing of Elie Wiesel, President Obama, who visited the site of the Buchenwald concentration camp with Wiesel in 2009, said "He raised his voice, not just against anti-Semitism, but against hatred, bigotry and intolerance in all its forms. He implored each of us, as nations and as human beings, to do the same, to see ourselves in each other and to make real that pledge of 'never again.' " I first read this book about 40 years ago and it has stayed with me ever sin July 2, 2016: On hearing of the passing of Elie Wiesel, President Obama, who visited the site of the Buchenwald concentration camp with Wiesel in 2009, said "He raised his voice, not just against anti-Semitism, but against hatred, bigotry and intolerance in all its forms. He implored each of us, as nations and as human beings, to do the same, to see ourselves in each other and to make real that pledge of 'never again.' " I first read this book about 40 years ago and it has stayed with me ever since. When I heard the sad news I decided it was time to drop what I was reading and refresh my memory of Wiesel's seminal holocaust memoir. As he says in his preface to the new edition, we all have a "moral obligation to try and prevent the enemy from enjoying one last victory by allowing his crimes to be erased from human memory." As some people drink to forget, I read to remember. Eliezer Wiesel's memoir sits with Anne Frank's diary at the top of the list of must-read books about the holocaust. While Frank puts a human face on those who died, Wiesel, as one who witnessed and endured the horrors of the holocaust takes the stand and testifies with heartbreaking eloquence of all that he saw and suffered. Much of Wiesel’s eloquence is in its brevity. In little more than 100 pages he dishes up one of the most powerful indictments of Hitler’s Final Solution ever written. “Men to the left! Women to the right!” Eight words spoken quietly, indifferently, without emotion. Eight simple, short words. Yet that was the moment I left my mother. Wow. In 28 words he consigns over half his family to the crematorium. No emotion. No blubber. Yet nothing he could have said could have made the reader feel more keenly the horror of the event. The part of his story that chills me the most is not the constant death but how easily the inmates’ tormenters were able to dehumanize them. What is worse; to kill a man or to turn him into someone who would kill his own father for a crust of bread? Yet Wiesel manages to remind us that even in the depths of Hell, there is room for a touch of the sublime.Those were my thoughts when I heard the sound of a violin. A violin in a dark barrack where the dead were piled on top of the living? It had to be Juliek. He was playing a fragment of a Beethoven concerto. Never before had I heard such a beautiful sound. In such silence. I shall never forget Juliek. How could I forget this concert given before an audience of the dead and dying? Even today, when I hear that particular piece by Beethoven, my eyes close and out of the darkness emerges the pale and melancholy face of my Polish comrade bidding farewell to an audience of dying men. The 2006 revision of the book includes a new preface by Wiesel and, at the end, the acceptance speech when he won the Nobel Peace Prize. In it he saidI swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. Although Elie Wiesel is no longer with us, his words, his testimony, will live on. Jewish tradition teaches us that we are never really dead until there is no one who remembers us. Let us hope that Eliezer Wiesel stays with us for a long, long, time.

  25. 4 out of 5

    K.D. Absolutely

    If Anne Frank was 13 when Germans came to Netherlands, Elie Wiessel was 15 when the same thing happened in Romania. Two teenage children who saw the atrocities of the German armies who were blinded by their loyalty to Hitler. There were a few differences: Anne Frank died in the concentration camp while Elie Wiessel survived. Anne Frank's diary, first published as The Diary of a Young Girl in 1950, was written in young girl's language while she was on a hiding while Night by Elie Wiesel tells the If Anne Frank was 13 when Germans came to Netherlands, Elie Wiessel was 15 when the same thing happened in Romania. Two teenage children who saw the atrocities of the German armies who were blinded by their loyalty to Hitler. There were a few differences: Anne Frank died in the concentration camp while Elie Wiessel survived. Anne Frank's diary, first published as The Diary of a Young Girl in 1950, was written in young girl's language while she was on a hiding while Night by Elie Wiesel tells the experience of a 15-y/o boy inside the concentration camps told later in the language of a 30-y/o man. Of course, I am not expecting Wiesel to do ala Frank McCourt in Angela's Ashes, winning the Pulitzer and later be hounded by controversy that what he told in the story were exaggerated if not untrue. Reading Night was still a haunting and extremely sad experience for me just like any other holocaust novels that I've read so far. I just thought that it would have been more gripping if Wiesel put more meat in his descriptions of the locales in the same manner as what Imre Kertezs (another Holocaust survivor) did in his Fatelessness and of course, Thomas Kennealy (he is a writer only) in Schindler's List. They are just too many books on Holocaust now and these are just the 4 among the more "famous" ones but my heart still cries buckets of tears while reading them. Critiquing a well-loved book like this is like blasphemy. I just feel like I am doing the 6 million Jews who perished in that horrendous shameless genocide an injustice if I say something about any literature depicting what they went through. What they went through has marked a permanent etch in our collective psyche. Their stories need to be told to and read by all the future generations. I hope that this generation and all the next ones will remember the Holocaust and learn the lesson from it. Saying these things is almost like a cliche since it is just stating the obvious from a well-known fact. This sounds like a beauty-pageant-kind-of-question but if I were given a chance to talk to one famous living person, I would choose Elie Wiesel. I will ask him what exactly he was thinking in that scene when the young boy with angel's sad face was hanged. He was looking at the boy, who because he weighted light (being a boy), did not die right away but hanged there still breathing for few hours. Somebody at the back said: "Where is God? Where is God now?" The 15-y/o Wiesel said: "Where is He? Here He is - He is hanging here on this gallows." I know that he lost faith in God, but later in the scene when there was another "selection" he cried out to God again. I would like to know how he was able to switch back his faith despite what he was experiencing in the camp. What is it that make us believers cling on to God despite being all the hopelessness and desperation that we all go through at times? Elie Wiesel is in the second row from the bottom. 7th guy from the left Oh, I have other questions but I hate long reviews. Primo Levi is next.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Elyse

    I read this book once before but read it again yesterday---with the new preface by his wife Marion Wiesel. I did not plan on reading the whole thing--I just wanted to read the new Preface---but then while sitting around (with sick people in the house)--I just dived into the horror again.....(with expanded thoughts than in years pass).

  27. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    Difficult to review. Night is a brutal first-hand account of life in Auschwitz. We’re all very familiar with the visuals of the journey in the cattle truck, the arrival in Auschwitz, the squalor and deprivations of life in the barracks, the selections. Wiesel tells us with simple but supremely eloquent prose what effect these daily horrors had on the human soul. Tells us, in effect, how low we can go, how even a son can kill his own father for a morsel of bread if subjected to inhumane treatment Difficult to review. Night is a brutal first-hand account of life in Auschwitz. We’re all very familiar with the visuals of the journey in the cattle truck, the arrival in Auschwitz, the squalor and deprivations of life in the barracks, the selections. Wiesel tells us with simple but supremely eloquent prose what effect these daily horrors had on the human soul. Tells us, in effect, how low we can go, how even a son can kill his own father for a morsel of bread if subjected to inhumane treatment for long enough. I’ll just say that probably everyone should read this short book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Daniel

    I had put off reading this story for a variety of reasons, main among them that I knew what I would be facing, and was eager to find an excuse not to. After having been to the Dachau Concentration Camp in Germany, the images of the now-dead ovens still linger somewhere in the recesses of my mind, and to back to it, to read from someone who went through it, was not something I readily wanted to do. But I did; I gathered myself up and read through in a couple of days, the end of the book taking me I had put off reading this story for a variety of reasons, main among them that I knew what I would be facing, and was eager to find an excuse not to. After having been to the Dachau Concentration Camp in Germany, the images of the now-dead ovens still linger somewhere in the recesses of my mind, and to back to it, to read from someone who went through it, was not something I readily wanted to do. But I did; I gathered myself up and read through in a couple of days, the end of the book taking me by surprise, so engrossed I was. I was stoic as I read; no emotion showed on my face, and most of the time I read while alone. Inside, however, it was very different. The world that Wiesel conjures is not a make-believe land, but an echo of the world he lived in, the world he saw destroyed. The experiences he writes about come not from research in books, but from scars in his skin and soul. At times all I wanted to do was to put the book down and never go back, but that would be a gross disservice to all those who went through the fires of Hell and never came back, perhaps even more so to those who did and still bear the scars and carry the torch, crying to the world to Never Forget. At the core, Night is an intensely personal story, one you do not have to be Jewish to understand. Being Jewish helps, though, and makes the story incredibly relevant and compelling. Because as you read all the horrors undergone, you always remember that you are Jewish, that you are one of those they targeted, one of those put into the camps, one of those whom, when the next Hitler comes, will be at risk. I can understand why Wiesel says that, after all the books he has written, Night still holds a special place in his heart and soul; it is probably the same place in which he carved a niche for the story in the heart of every reader.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Duane

    In 1944, at the age of fifteen, Elie Wiesel, his parents and three sisters, were transported from Sighet to the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland. Upon arriving they were ordered, "men to the left, women to the right". Elie would never see his mother and younger sister Sarah again. What followed was two years of living hell, two years of "night". What it was like in a concentration camp, what it was like for Elie and his father, can not be put into words that would be adequate to describe t In 1944, at the age of fifteen, Elie Wiesel, his parents and three sisters, were transported from Sighet to the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland. Upon arriving they were ordered, "men to the left, women to the right". Elie would never see his mother and younger sister Sarah again. What followed was two years of living hell, two years of "night". What it was like in a concentration camp, what it was like for Elie and his father, can not be put into words that would be adequate to describe the reality. But Elie's account is graphic enough to make us wonder how anyone could have survived this horror. Most didn't; Elie's mother and youngest sister Sarah didn't; and Elie's father, who he tried to look after, tried to keep alive, didn't. Elie and his father survived a death march in the dead of winter from Auschwitz to Buchenwald where his father finally succumbed to illness and beatings. In the spring of 1945 the American Army arrived to liberate the camp and end the "night", or the nightmare. This book is hard to read, as are most books on this horror of the 20th century, but this is first hand account and reminds us of what human ignorance, hatred, and bigotry are capable of, and don't think for one minute it could never happen again because it can. Elie's two older sisters, Hilda and Bea, both survived the concentration camps and all were later reunited. In 1986 Elie Wiesel was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Connie

    Even though I have read many other books about the Holocaust, none of them have left me feeling quite so haunted as "Night". It's a book that everyone should read. Based on author Elie Wiesel's experiences, the narrator is an observant Jewish fifteen-year-old in the Hungarian village of Sighet. His family and other Jews were sent to live in the ghetto by the Nazis. Then they were loaded onto cattle cars and traveled for days without food to Birkenau. Eliezer and his father were sent to Auschwitz Even though I have read many other books about the Holocaust, none of them have left me feeling quite so haunted as "Night". It's a book that everyone should read. Based on author Elie Wiesel's experiences, the narrator is an observant Jewish fifteen-year-old in the Hungarian village of Sighet. His family and other Jews were sent to live in the ghetto by the Nazis. Then they were loaded onto cattle cars and traveled for days without food to Birkenau. Eliezer and his father were sent to Auschwitz while his mother and sister were placed in another line, probably headed for the crematorium. Eliezer eloquently remembers the horror of Nazi cruelty--hard labor, beatings, and a lack of food and warm clothing. He shows how fighting for survival can also turn Jews against each other as they fight for a scrap of bread. His father offers emotional support, but is also a burden as he weakens. Eliezer questions his faith in God who allows such evil and suffering in the world. He is transformed physically, emotionally, and spiritually by his experiences. This chilling quotation sums up Eliezer's reaction to the horror so well: "Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp, that turned my life into one long night seven times sealed. Never shall I forget that smoke. Never shall I forget the small faces of the children whose bodies I saw transformed into smoke under a silent sky. Never shall I forget those flames that consumed my faith forever. Never shall I forget the nocturnal silence that deprived me for all eternity of the desire to live. Never shall I forget those moments that murdered my God and my soul and turned my dreams to ashes. Never shall I forget those things, even were I condemned to live as long as God Himself. Never."

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