I've finally and officially finished this book.
It took me a while to complete this novel -- nearly 10 days, I think -- but that's because I wanted to take my time with this book. I didn't want to zoom through this piece of literature like I do with other novels; first of all, because this book is non-fiction. I tend to take my time on these types and second because it was a memoir. A heartwrenching, heartbreaking, heartcollapsing one.
About the Holocaust.
Elie Wiesel is one of the few survivors of the Holocaust that are still alive today. He published a book of his experiences in French, Un Di Velt Hot Geshvign
, and then created an abridged version with 127 pages which was then translated into English as Night
Night is Elie Wiesel's story. I've heard that when he first wrote this, he wasn't quite comfortable with English, so the story has a sort of detached feel to the words, even if it was first written in French and then translated into English. There are incomplete sentences, run-ons, fragments -- but those sentences all add to the style of this writer. There are so many beautiful sentences in this novel, short but sweet, and hold all sorts of meaning with human nature; there are also so many similes and metaphors, one which I remember is: "Never shall I forget the night that murdered my God and turned my dreams into ashes."
I'm sure words cannot come to Elie to describe what he endured; sometimes feelings are so strong that you are left speechless. I think this explains why he took so long to write Night
; he was far too speechless and didn't know how to address the issue. He didn't know how to make people understand
if they hadn't gone through what he had, and I don't blame him.
Elie is only fourteen or sixteen in this novel, and from the beginning he was very religious. He studied sacred scriptures in the Jewish religion, but what I found heartbreaking was how he began to deny the existence of God during his time in the concentration camps. But who are we to judge? Wiesel had to watch thousands of mutilated and emaciated dead bodies being burned, watching their ashes float in the air. How could his belief in God not
falter when he experienced such terrifying things at such a young age?
There were so many conflicting emotions in this novel. I'm not sure how to describe it myself; though he used very vague words at times, I felt as if I could see the pictures in my heads: dead children, angular, skeletal bodies, and thousands of corpses.
The book is very haunting, I would say.