Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Qty:1
  • List Price: $15.00
  • Save: $1.09 (7%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Only 8 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Illumination Night has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: The item shows wear from consistent use, but it remains in good condition and works perfectly. All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting. May include "From the library of" labels.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Illumination Night Paperback – February 5, 2002

4.0 out of 5 stars 106 customer reviews

See all 23 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
$13.91
$3.09 $0.01
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"
$45.00

2016 Book Awards
Browse award-winning titles. See all 2016 winners
$13.91 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 8 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Illumination Night
  • +
  • Seventh Heaven
  • +
  • The Drowning Season
Total price: $40.77
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

With an eye for household details and respect for daily events, Hoffman (Fortune's Daughter unleashes the mythic forcefulness of ordinary life in this polished story of love and loneliness set on the island of Martha's Vineyard. Simon is in his fourth year and small even for his age when he sees white-robed Elizabeth Renny, a neighbor in her 75th, tumble out her attic window "like a cloud." In her convalescence, Elizabeth is cared for by her rebellious teen-aged granddaughter Jody, sent from off-island. Jody sets her sights on Simon's father, Andre, who restores antique motorcycles, raising doubts and fears in Vonny, Simon's mother, Andre's wife. Elizabeth recovers; Jody pines and plots for the taciturn Andre; Simon doesn't grow; and Vonny's anxieties bloom into full-fledged agoraphobia. Seasons advance. Jody learns the limits of her desires and meets a freakishly tall eggman; a child dies, another grows; Elizabeth decides she'd rather live than die; and Vonny faces her fears. Illumination Night, an annual celebration on Martha's Vineyard when Victorian houses surrounding a park and bandstand are lit with hundreds of magical Japanese lanterns, provides apt title and image for this shimmering, radiant tale.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“Daringly mixing comedy with tragedy…[Hoffman] has created a narrative that somehow makes myth out of the sticky complexities of contemporary marriage…Her characters are branded onto one’s memory.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Vivid, convincing characters…uncommon insight.”—People

“[A] bright constellation of characters…draws the reader into the dusky, dreamy world of Alice Hoffman.”—St. Petersburg Times

“Alice Hoffman takes seemingly ordinary lives and lets us see and feel extraordinary things.”—Amy Tan

“Not-so-delicate questions are raised in a wonderfully delicate way in Alice Hoffman’s latest novel… Explorations of the tangled strands of parenthood and friendship, self-protection and generosity, dream and disillusionment are made achingly vivid by Hoffman’s ability to ground them in the finely etched details of her characters’ daily lives.”—Newsday

“There is a cumulative power to Illumination Night that is wondrous…It’s enough to make one search out other books by Alice Hoffman.”—The Chicago Tribune

“Reading an authentic prose stylist of high order is an uncommon privilege.”—The Boston Globe

“Alice Hoffman hits bull’s eyes on the incomprehensions between the young and the old, on the magic and pain of ordinary life. She is erotic and romantic…funny…clever and humane.”—The Times (London)

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Reprint edition (February 5, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425183262
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425183267
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.8 x 7.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #749,475 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Ronald Scheer on August 10, 2002
Format: Paperback
I picked up this book on a summer vacation in Martha's Vineyard and was both charmed and entertained by it. The tradition of Illumination Night and the summer gatherings of Methodist families on the island make a kind of magical, firefly-lit ambiance for this tale of people, young and old, whose lives intersect in unexpected ways.
The most fascinating character for me was the agoraphobic young wife, trapped in her house by fears she can barely articulate. Hoffman's treatment of this characters is so realistic and convincing that after reading the novel I felt for the first time that I not only understood this condition; I had lived it.
While the gentle-giant young man is a bit of a surprise for someone reading Hoffman for the first time, she also makes this character perfectly plausible and sympathetic. You can accept the young girl's falling in love with him because we come to care about him ourselves, while realizing that she has the power to break his heart.
As a writer, Hoffman leaves you with the impression that she feels deeply for her characters, regardless of their weaknesses and shortcomings. And putting down this novel, you can feel in yourself a tender-heartedness for others that most books either don't try to evoke, or try and fail.
1 Comment 56 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This was the first book I ever read of Alice Hoffman, and I was completely amazed by her talent of writing such vivid and enchanting tales of ordinary people. Illumination night is a somewhat sad tale about destructive and longing love, that is destined to fail from the beginning. I could feel the pain that the young girl felt, knowing that the man she loved could never be hers. This is a story of passage, a young girl grows up and faces reality and her grandmother grows older and faces the fact that death cannot be avoided. After reading this book I got hooked on Hoffman's books. This is still my favorite book, alongside HERE ON EARTH. I really recommend this book if you aren't afraid of getting touched. Tears will fall, but in the end you will feel very whole.
Comment 37 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love Alice Hoffman's style of writing and her development of characters. Andre, Vonnie, Simon, Elizabeth, Eddy and Jody are all fascinating and I couldn't wait to read more about them. However, as the story went on and I was getting near the end, I realized that there was going to be no real conclusion, no tying up of loose ends, no satisfying "aha!" moments (except for Elizabeth)...and I assume that is Ms Hoffman's intention, but I was left with a very dissatisfied feeling. I'm sure there are all kinds of deep meanings to be deduced from the story (or perhaps not!). When I read a novel for relaxation I prefer a beginning, a middle and an end, and this book left too many ends hanging loose for my taste.
Comment 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By A Customer on August 27, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Illumination Night is the seventh book I have read by Alice Hoffman. I wasn't too sure I would like this book, but it was a delightful surprise.
This book centers around Andre and Vonny, a couple who lives on Martha's Vineyard with their four-year-old boy, Simon. Andre and Vonny are having some martial problems, which is complicated by Andre's failing business and financial troubles, the worry that Simon has some defective genetic disease that prevents him from growing, and Jody, who moves in next door.
Jody is Elizabeth Renny's grandchild, and she was sent there in part because her parents were experiencing marital problems of their own, and also in part because Elizabeth was having trouble seeing and getting around. Jody is a sixteen-year-old teenager who likes to steal cars, manipulate boys, smoke cigarettes, skip school, and sleep with the neighbor's husband.
Jody becomes Simon's baby-sitter, and pretty soon, Andre can't control himself. Soon after that, Vonny snaps and can no longer leave the house. She finds out that she's having panic attacks, which seems to make her and her husband grow closer for the time being.
Jody finally loses interest in Andre when she spots the beautiful Giant in the woods, named Edward. At this point, you are sucked up in a romance of two unlikely people, much like a Beauty and the Beast.
This detailed and intricate storytelling is woven around high-charged emotions and mystical surroundings. It is this kind of tale-telling that Alice Hoffman is known for, and what she does best. Illumination Night is a truly engrossing read, and is shows further evidence of what a great writer Alice Hoffman is.
Comment 21 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I always feel, when I pick up a book by Ms. Hoffman, that I am in for a treat and this book was no exception. I love the descriptive almost poetic style of writing. From the beginning, the reader is taken on a magical, mystical journey that is not easily forgotten. There are parts of this book that seemingly come from a children's fairy tale or fableyet hey seem entirely plausible because, I think, Ms. Hoffman really cares about her characters and what happens to them.
The reader will enjoy this story of a modern marriage, a young woman who is trapped by her fears, a high school girl that is at the heart of all the sin and passion of the story. This is a good story of myth, magic and reality
Comment 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Illumination Night
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Illumination Night

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?