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Day: A Novel Paperback – March 21, 2006
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Top Customer Reviews
"Day" is the third step in this trilogy, and once again Wiesel writes with stark yet evocative sentences. This time, the young man is a little older and he is struggling with the acceptance of love with a wonderful woman. His struggle is accentuated by his time in a hospital bed, after taking a step onto a New York City street and being struck by a taxi. He thinks back through his sufferings, his relationships, his guilt, and his questions. This is the perfect time for us to see Wiesel's character come to grips with life, not glossing over the horrific things but moving beyond himself into a deeper care for others.
But that is not the case. Wiesel's character takes another wrong step, blaming God for every ill done by mankind, projecting man's weaknesses upon the God he had grown up learning about. What about the good he sees in others, though? What about the innocence and self-sacrifice? Should these, by the same measure, be credited to the Devil from the same Bible?
Wiesel's characters are rooted in the realities of the world, among the good and evil deeds done by people of all ages. He shows great care and compassion for his fellow human beings, and deservedly has won a Nobel Peace Prize for his writing. Sadly, though, I see no maturation in this chronology of storytelling. The characters are still wallowing in their shame, their past. Still blinded by despair.Read more ›
The overall message I took from "Day" was rather a question of whether or not someone can regain their humanity, their sense in the world, after going through such a tragedy. I think Wiesel is hopeful. I won't spoil the ending that lends to this idea but I believe he thinks life should be lived in the present. In other words, one can't live through the dead, nor through the past, because the dead are dead and the past is the past. Lamenting can help with the grieving, but life can move forward.
This isn't a plot-driven novel. If you're a reader who searches for that, than you may not appreciate "Day". And that's fine. I don't believe Wiesel is focused on pure entertainment. "Day" is a great book and provides excellent food-for-thought on the discussion of humanity.
Elie Wiesel describes the protagonist of this novel as the survivor who endured the world's worst war to be so emotionally scarred that he thinks "wouldn't suicide be as great a temptation as love or faith?" In the preface, he mentions how children of WW II were discovered in holes and other hiding places, and whose emancipation was not a moment of magnificence. Rather, their freedom from hiding ensued into a forced starvation and eventual death - as their minds or bodies cared not to live, although offered the opportunity for such.
Pessimism about life abounds. "Maybe God is dead, but man is alive . . . " his friend lectures him. But, he also understands that God must be alive as his grandmother sagely told him "God needs love, not understanding." And, so he tries to believe.
But, such beliefs are accompanied by torments. Like an LSD-plagued person of the 1970's, he is reminded too often of what he endured in the Holocaust to feel free and alive. When recovering, the doctor wants him to fight death - usually something which can be conjured by fear. This survivor, the doctor learns, is afraid of nothing. He has seen too much. A survivor has witnessed more than he wants others to know. Like a military veteran, Wiesel for years said nothing of the hardships - then he began to write about the same. Thank God.
And, while alive the protagonist must ask why fate has delivered him to life and survival while parents and millions received much less. He surmises that "fate offered him life and maybe happiness.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Elie continues to impress with his poetic words and deep and profound language. I loved this book along with the two others!Published 4 days ago by Meli
Night fully meets our expectations of the horror, torture and murder delivered by the Nazis and SS to and upon the Jewish people. Read morePublished 8 days ago by william solomons
Elie Wiesel is an amazing author whose work reflects the violent, fearful and haunting time period that is the holocaust. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Gabrielle Wheatley
I really wasn't impressed with this one at all. I liked The first one in this trilogy, but the second two were a disappointment.Published 6 months ago by Emily Landsperger
Really great book, don't want to give anything away, but my book club really enjoyed this!Published 6 months ago by Emily Werner