A profound account of the pain 1 human put so many others through...A most profound book
A credible, heart-wrenching, serious book. I will never forget it.
The name of the book is actually "Night" by Elie Wiesel.
In Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel's memoir Night, a scholarly, pious teenager is wracked with guilt at having survived the horror of the Holocaust and the genocidal campaign that consumed his family. His memories of the nightmare world of the death camps present him with an intolerable question: how can the God he once so fervently believed in have allowed these monstrous events to occur? There are no easy answers in this harrowing book, which probes life's essential riddles with the lucid anguish only great literature achieves. It marks the crucial first step in Wiesel's lifelong project to bear witness for those who died.
When the book begins, it is 1941, and Elie is a 12 year old Jewish boy growing up in the small village of Sighet, Transylvania. His father is a shopkeeper, and Elie is one of 4 children. As Elie matures, and becomes more cognizant of religious matters, WWII seems a distant event. Rumblings of trouble begin with the news that all foreign Jews are to be deported, but by 1944, there are rumours that the war will end soon--it is just a matter of time before Germany's defeat. Again there is news that the Jews in Budapest are being rounded up in ghettos, but these seem like distant events. The news that German soldiers are now on Hungarian soil is troubling, but Elie's father elects to stay. The situation rapidly declines and Elie's family--along with all other Jewish residents in the village, are shipped off to concentration camps.
Elie, now 15, arrives at Birkenau, and then is sent to Auschwitz. He is parted from his mother and his sisters without even being aware of the moment when he sees them for the last time. Elie and his father survive an initial selection conducted by Dr. Mengele, and then their existence in the camp begins.
This slim book rouses, at once, so many feelings--pity--that any human being should have to suffer so much, but also the idea emerges that if one should survive, what is left? Elie suffers degradation, loss of faith, loss of family, and finally loss of any semblance of humanity. He experiences the great shame of caring for nothing except survival--even when daily survival brings starvation, misery, and freezing cold. Wiesel does not spare himself in this chilling memoir--he has no mercy and no excuses as he recounts his own starvation and struggle for survival--no matter the cost. Above all, the book taught me to never count hope into the equation when making decisions about taking action in life. Hope is cheap, and it isn't real. "Night"--is simply an unforgettable book, and a recent re-reading reminded me of the book's power--displacedhuman
A great Oprah club pick. This story will stay with you even after you finished reading it.