Summary and book reviews of Night by Elie Wiesel

Night

by Elie Wiesel

Night
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  • First Published:
    Jan 2006, 144 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2006, 144 pages

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Book Summary

An autobiographical narrative in which the author describes his experiences in Nazi concentration camps, watching family and friends die, and how they led him to believe that God is dead.

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 Wiesel reflects on the enduring importance of Night and his lifelong, passionate dedication to ensuring that the world never forget man’s capacity for inhumanity to man.

Preface to the New Translation
by Elie Wiesel

IF IN MY LIFETIME I WAS TO WRITE only one book, this would be the one. Just as the past lingers in the present, all my writings after Night, including those that deal with biblical, Talmudic, or Hasidic themes, profoundly bear its stamp, and cannot be understood if one has not read this very first of my works.

Why did I write it?

Did I write it so as not to go mad or, on the contrary, to go mad in order to understand the nature of madness, the immense, terrifying madness that had erupted in history and in the conscience of mankind?

Was it to leave behind a legacy of words, of memories, to help prevent history from repeating itself?

Or was it simply to preserve a record of the ordeal I endured as an adolescent, at an age when one’s knowledge of death and evil should be limited to what...

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
About This Guide

The questions and discussion topics that follow are designed to enhance your reading of Elie Wiesel’s Night. We hope they will enrich your experience as you explore this poignant and fiercely honest remembrance of the Holocaust.


Introduction

A watershed memoir first published in 1958, Elie Wiesel’s Night has become widely recognized as a masterpiece. This new edition, translated from the French by Wiesel’s wife and frequent translator, Marion Wiesel, presents this seminal work in the language and spirit truest to the author’s original intent. A new preface by the author, in addition to the text of his ...
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Reviews

Media Reviews

About.com - Erin Collazo Miller

I am disturbed by the fact that Wiesel never returns to hope or faith. He raises big questions about humanity and suffering, but the book never points toward a meaningful answer. I want redemption, or at least some hint of light. But Wiesel did not experience light, and Night will not let the reader pretend the Holocaust was anything other than what it was.

The New York Times

A slim volume of terrifying power

Oprah Winfrey

I gain courage from his courage

Saturday Review - Curt Leviant

Wiesel has taken his own anguish and imaginatively metamorphosed it into art.

Author Blurb Alfred Kazin
No one has left behind him so moving a record.

Reader Reviews

Cieran

Elie Wiesel
It was good. It talked about what happened to them, and it was sad.

kenzie ranger

The Jewish-American
The Jewish-American, Elie Wiesel, made the biggest impact on me when I read "Night". His tone in the book let me visualize the story setting by setting. I will never know what it felt like to go through what any of those people in the ...   Read More

Luc Dowell

A book
Night was a book that made one of the biggest impacts on me. I have studied already about the holocaust, and I have read many stories about people telling their point of view on these horrors, but none of those stories have made me feel the same way ...   Read More

Kendell Sutton

Great read!
Great novel! I very much enjoyed the Novel night and the lessons it taught me. Elie Wiesel truly takes us into the concentration camps and shows us what cruel things man does to each other first hand. He does what he must to survive and he continues ...   Read More

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