Night is an unmistakably autobiographical account of the author's own gruesome experiences in Nazi Germany's death camps. Told through the eyes of 14-year-old Eliezer, the tragic fate of the Jews from the little town of Sighet unfolds with a heart-wrenching inevitability. Even as they are stuffed into cattle cars bound for Auschwitz, the townspeople refuse to believe rumors of anti-Semitic atrocities. Not until they are marched toward the blazing crematory at the camp's "reception center" does the terrible truth sink in.
Recounting the evils at Auschwitz and Buchenwald, Wiesel's enduring classic of Holocaust literature raises questions of continuing significance for all future generations: How could man commit these horrors, and could such an evil ever be repeated?
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©1972, 1985 Elie Wiesel
Originally published in 1958 by Les Editions de Minuit
Translation ©2006 by Marion Wiesel
Preface to the New Translation ©2006 Elie Wiesel
(P)2006 Recorded Books LLC
"[A] slim volume of terrifying power." (The New York Times)
Better than average. But I don't think he went into enough detail the horrors of life in a concentration camp.
That he survived.
The horrors seem to come more alive from his performance.
The part about his father. So sad.
It is book well worth getting. I just found it too short. I wanted more information.
Reading is one of life's greatest pleasures...and, now that I've found audiobooks, I can read even while performing mundane tasks!
Part of me wonders why this powerful book didn't pop up on any of my required reading lists in high school, college and grad school. At the same time, I'm glad I read it for the first time (in the form of this audiobook) after having acquired basic knowledge of the holocaust over the years, because I don't know how I would have handled the experience as, say, an unprepared teen in a high school English class. Then again, perhaps this book should be required reading precisely because it is so powerful. Its lessons surely cannot be forgotten, and they're such important lessons. I was intrigued with the author's frank handling of the subject of faith. And I was captivated by the additional texts attached to the main reading: Wiesel's Nobel Prize speech, his preface to the new translation (Weisel's wife's translation), etc., and I was glad they're presented after the main text reading (since much of what happens in the main text is referred to in these additional texts). George Guidall's narration is moving and real. There were times when I thought I could "hear" tears in his eyes.
Night by Elie Wiesel together with VIctor Frank's Man's Search For Meaning are two of the most important books I have ever read. Whenever I begin to feel sorry for myself, relistening to either helps me keep my life in perspective. These two men together with many of the characters described in their books give new meaning to the term "man's indomitable spirit". Mr. Wiesel was so honest about his innermost thoughts and feelings as he and his father attempted to endure the daily horrors of concentration camp life that I was continously asking myself how I would have reacted under similar conditions. Frankly, I too often found myself coming up short in my comparative predictions. Mr. Wiesel and Dr. Frankl have definitely become two role models that have made me a better man.
Perhaps one of the most powerful audio experiences I have ever had. In fact, this reading, both the text itself and George G.'s reading of it have effected me profoundly. I had never read the book before. It has been on my "to read" list for many years. There is no question that I would have been a much different man had I read this sooner in life.
I am not Jewish. But all decent non-Jews should make an imperative effort to read and know this book. Each person who does can only walk away from it knowing that they too will not forget what happened and will feel empowered to know they themselves will never let it happen again.
This book was a book my son a freshman in high school was required to read so we both listen to it and we both enjoyed. For my son I think it is important to know about a very dark time in history.
I really enjoyed listening to this audio book. Being of polish descent, and hearing the stories in Night were so very close to home for me and again it makes me realise how lucky and blessed i am. That terrible dark period was awfull for the people who lived to tell there story. May god bless them all.
This Book will grip you as it did me. I was amazed at the strength the human spirit has to rise above the evil that the Nazi's could inflict on fellow human beings. You will enjoy this book all the way through and be a better person having listened to the Jews struggle during the reign of the Nazi's.
This was a great book. I'm so glad I took the time to purchase it. The narrator added so much, I will remember this story of tragic loss foever.
This story should never be forgotten, and this author wove a tragic account of what it meant to be Jewish during WWII, with a bittersweet rememberance of a childs love for his elders
"The two most important days of your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why" Mark Twain
This book is raw, and sadly very real. The thought of some of the things described in this book makes me cringe, and yet I would not hesitate to recommend this book as required reading for everyone. It reminds us of what men are capable of doing and the undying strength of the human spirit.
The book is a history of one mans (then a boy) journey into Auschwitz-Birkenau. A journey that VERY few lived to tell about. Elie Wiesel has lived an inspirational life (he's still alive) and has written several other books. I encourage anyone who has the time to take a minute and Google him - he's truly an amazing man.
After finishing the book, I told my wife some of the things I had learned. She stopped me before I could finish - it was too graphic. And it is graphic, and it is real. But it's my opinion that we need to realize that this really happened. We all know that millions of people were killed in these concentration camps, but what we sometimes forget is that these were real life people, each an individual with a story of their own. It's books like this that bring some of those individuals back to life.
"Haunting, deeply moving and disturbing"
Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor, Israeli author and 1986 Nobel Peace Prizewinner, presents to us a compelling, haunting and disturbing story.
Beautifully written, autobiographical, this personal narrative reflects the views of a 14 year-old boy torn from his home and community in Transylvania in the Second World War. He is traumatised by his separation from his mother and little sister, witnessing their subsequent consumption by Nazi fires and vengeance. Through one traumatising experience to the next, he manages, by a sinew at times, to retain his link with his father, surviving Auschwitz and Buchenwald... separated in the end by death and shame.
We follow the story of a Jewish community which could not contemplate the atrocities they would experience. They could not imagine the way in which the communities in which they were integrated would allow them to be expelled to concentration camps and annihilation. They could not foresee what it would be like to be marched out of their homes. "The town seemed deserted, but behind the shutters, our friends of yesterday were probably waiting for the moment when they could loot our homes".
They could not foresee the railway trucks full of Jews, the impact of scarcity and hunger and uncertainty on people's relationships. They could not have planned for the few hours they were given before they were expelled from their homes, burying valuable possessions under the floor-boards hoping one day, but never able, to reclaim their possessions. They could not imagine the cruelty, the violence, the humilation, the selection processes, the death factories, the fires, the trains, the labour camps, the public hangings, the beatings and the torture.
Elie wanders why and whether this is allowed to happen in the 20th century. He imagines the scenes of expulsions in the Inquisition, but not now when the whole world knew what was happening. And yet, the silence, the denials, and the lack of response prevailed.
"The ghetto was ruled by neither German nor Jew" he writes. "It was ruled ... by delusion".
Elie loses his trust in God and refuses to accept the existence of an all-knowing and all-good god who allows such barbarity to persist. We see stories of trust and reliability, love and warmth, tenderness and sacrifice. Wiesel writes beautifully and at times sparsely: "The synagogue resembled a railway station ... baggage and tears".
The recording contains additional material - Elie Wiesel's impressive Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech; his revised preface and discussion of why he wrote this book; and a valuable review of the book and its importance by Francois Mauriac, the French author who first encouraged Elie Wiesel to publish and assisted him after many failures, in getting into press.
The book is beautifully written, translated by his wife, and movingly read by George Guidall. Around three hours long it is a compelling and unforgettable audience with Elie Wiesel: haunting, disturbing, moving, human, insightful and lingering in the memory.
"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"
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