Book Review by D.I. Telbat
(My review first appeared on Goodreads.)
Rich and poor alike—everyone was starved, struck, murdered . . .
Elie Wiesel was in his mid-teens when he was taken from his home in Sighet, Transylvania, during WWII. In his book Night, one of Wiesel’s most disturbing memories is the ease with which the Jews were taken, a few at a time from the neighborhood, until only a ghost town remained.
This was a gripping book, definitely not for the weak of heart. Wiesel’s memory is quite vivid of his months in Auschwitz, then in Buchenwald. It was terrifying for him.
When transferred to Buchenwald, 100 men were stuck in a roofless boxcar during a winter storm. At the end of the trip, twelve survived from that boxcar, Wiesel and his father among them.
Throughout the book, Wiesel questions and blames God. His thoughts of God’s seeming passivity during the Holocaust are full of anger.
Wiesel was not a Christian, but for those of us who are, we can see God’s hand in the aftermath of WWII. God used the Jewish survivors to prepare for the present, and the near future.
I’ve read a few Holocaust books, and this short read is by far the most graphic. I am further horrified by man’s hatred for humanity, but more specifically, for God’s Chosen People.
What stays with me the most from this book is the denial in the Jewish neighborhood that anything bad was approaching. And when the Germans had occupied their streets, a certain delusion of safety remained in every house.
This forces me to reflect on the dangers of sin in our own lives, and on how we deny its danger. We are often delusional about the safety of sin’s cold occupation.
If you read this book, and I recommend you do, let me know what you think. The wrongs of humanity must be reviewed, not forgotten, so we may resist the evils when they arise again.
Elie Wiesel won a Nobel Peace Prize for Night.
You can find Night by Elie Wiesel at Amazon.com (aff).
Click here to read other Book Reviews by D.I. Telbat.