I was disappointed in this book. I thought the premise was fascinating - Jews who were being detained after WWII by the British as they made their way to Israel. There was so much I didn't know about this period of time, and after reading this book I still don't! I think this book could have been much more in-depth, both in the history and in the characters. The characters were almost two-dimensional - I didn't feel connected to any of them - the backgrounds were only a few pages long and scattered around the book. Unlike The Red Tent, which was outstanding, this book just didn't do justice to the story.
I went into this book with high expectations, but it just didn't quite meet these expectations. At first, it was a bit hard keeping track of all the characters, but that got easier as you learned more about each of them. I enjoyed the basic storyline and some of it was painful to read but necessary. I was a bit disappointed to see the story go on and on and then suddenly/abruptly wrap up. I did like the final glimpse the author gave of the characters. Not sorry I read it, just was a little short of my hopes for it.
As with her most widely known work, The Red Tent, Anita Diamant focuses on the women in her latest novel based on the Atlit detainee camp preventing persons without papers from freely entering British-ruled Palestine. Day After Night might refer to the detainee's experiences of surviving WWII in Europe, or the October 1945 escape from Atlit. However, it did not describe my experience reading this book after The Red Tent.
Whereas Dinah was a strong central character in The Red Tent, much of Day After Night describes mostly the listless days in the camp, slowly leading up to the escape which no one really knew about until the end. The narrative alternatively focuses on four women (Tedi, Zorah, Leonie, and Shayndel), slowly revealing how each survived the Holocaust in different ways. The women don't talk about their experiences with each other, and it was unclear until the end that they were particularly close. The action was slow-moving, almost like watching a black-and-white film of a flowing stream. Moreover, the somewhat anti-climatic escape leaves some loose ends about other characters whom Diamant spent time developing. Although it brought to light an aspect of the Holocaust not usually emphasized, as well as the British Mandate of Palestine and Israeli statehood, Day After Night did not show off Diamant's storytelling talent so evident in The Red Tent.
I will begin by saying that this book is different then The Red Tent mostly because of the time period it is set in. I believe it was easier for the author to take liberties with a time period that cannot be verified by fact (The Red Tent). Day After Night was set in Israel immediately following WWII. The similarity with The Red Tent is that it follows the experiences of a group of women.
The novel is about the experiences of Jewish women placed in the Atlit internment camp in Israel. The camp is run by the British. I learned a lot about a piece of history that I was unaware of. I had no idea that after WWII there were limits placed on how many people could immigrate to Israel. If you arrived without the proper papers you were placed in a camp.
The four main characters all had vastly different experiences during the war, which influence their attitudes and actions in the camp. As the story of Atlit unfolds we slowly learn the details of their experiences.
I enjoyed the book, but not near as much as The Red Tent. I feel that the author attempted to incorporate too much of the factual history into the events to make the stories of the women flow well. If you are interested in the Holocaust you will appreciate this book. If nothing else it is worth your time to learn about an important, but not much discussed, period of history.
Loved this book! I knew nothing about the Holocaust survivors trying to get to Israel. Learned some history while getting to know some great characters. I highly recommend this book for a great summer read!
In the aftermath of WWII, Britain was still a colonial presence in pre-statehood Israel. There was a strict limit on the number of Jews who were allowed to relocate; "illegals" were sent back or placed in prison camps, adding further trauma to the shattered lives of survivors. This novel is a fictionalized account of the true story of Atlit, one of the internment camps. The story is told through the voices of four separate women who had vastly different--but all horrifying--experiences during the war. History "lite" perhaps, but a satisfying read that will also do a little teaching at the same time.
I knew little about the post-war camps and Anita Diamant always does a terrific job of being prepared on her subject matter. I rate this book only as a 3, though. It didn't always hold my attention. The Red Tent is absolutely one of my favorite books that she wrote. Day After Night fell short of The Red Tent but it remains educational.
The author of THE RED TENT creates the story of four Jewish women who fled Nazi-held Europe for Palestine, and who are being detained at a British-run refugee camp there. The horrific memories they share create close bonds of friendship. Dagmara Dominczyk's vivid characterizations and polished performance of their individual stories are compelling and bittersweet. In particular, she captures their fear when they're told to undress and shower upon arrival at the camp--a simple act that has terrifying implications for them. Dominczyk gives a feeling of realism to a fictional narrative that is drawn from actual events in 1945, when more than 200 prisoners were rescued from the British camp on the Mediterranean coast, south of Haifa. -- AudioFile
Diamant's interpretation of the founding of Israel centers on several young women, many of them survivors of the Nazi concentration camps, attempting an escape from another camp, this one a British internment center in Palestine. Dagmara Dominczyk is good with the panoply of European accents evinced by Diamant's characters, and does an adequate job with the Hebrew and Yiddish gutturals, but some of the basics flummox her: the name of one of the book's protagonists should be pronounced SHAYN-del, not Shayn-DEL. These jarring mistakes notwithstanding, Dominczyk is adept at modulating her voice, using shifts in timber, intonation, and accent bring each of Diamant's heroines to life. -- Reed Business Information