Reading time: 2 – 4 minutes
Author: Elie Wiesel
Synopsis: (Taken from Amazon.com) 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 Weisel, Elie’s wife and frequent translator, presents this seminal memoir in the language and spirit truest to the author’s original intent. And in the substantive new preface, Elie Wiesel reflects on the enduring importance of Night and his lifelong, passionate dedication to ensuring that the world never forgets man capacity for inhumanity to man.
Night offers much more than a litany of the daily terrors, everyday perversions, and rampant sadism at Auschwitz and Buchenwald; it also eloquently addresses many of the philosophical as well as personal questions implicit in any serious consideration of what the Holocaust was, what it meant, and what its legacy is and will be.
The first time I ever read this book, I was a senior in high school and it was required reading. Required is always a bad word in high school — being forced to read something. Needless to say, many people in my class probably didn’t actually read it. But, I did.
I remember enjoying it very much in high school, reading it in less than a day. The biggest scene that stood out in my memory was the death march. Re-reading it again almost 10 years later, I get a little something more from the book than I did before. For one, I was able to read it purely for enjoyment’s sake. No one pressuring to quiz me, or have a lengthy discussion. It wasn’t homework. It just — what it was; an interesting read. A memorable read, at that.
In Night, Elie is a young boy whisked away from his home in the ghetto to Auschwitz. Auschwitz happens to be one of the harshest death camps during the World War Two era. To say that it’s a miracle he survived Auschwitz is an understatement.
Throughout this novel you’ll see the torturous life he endured for so many months before the camp was liberated. You’ll understand why it’s not something Elie wanted to talk about for the longest time, but only decided to so people wouldn’t forget the horrors and repeat history. The survivors who are still alive are quickly dwindling as time endures, and Elie swore that he would make sure people knew what happened.
Not a long novel — but intense, very intense. It’s not something you can put down because his words draw you in and make you feel as if you were there, suffering with him and his Father. It’s a horrific detailed account, and not something anyone should go on in life without reading. Read it.