A profoundly moving novel about a Holocaust survivor's struggle to remember both the heroic and the shameful events of his past, and about his American-born son's need to assimilate his father's life into his own. "A book of shattering force that offers a message of urgency to a world under the spell of trivia and the tyranny of amnesia."--Chicago Tribune Book World.
"Wiesel's new novel is the powerful story of a father and son. Elhanan Rosenbaum, the father, is a professor and a survivor of the Holocaust living in New York with his son, Malkiel, a New York Times reporter. The father suffers from an extreme case of amnesia and is dying. While there is still time, Elhanan begins to tell his son of his experiences during the war and of Talia, his wife who died during childbirth. Elhanan talks of the massacre of the Jews from his Hungarian village, of his service with a labor battalion of Jews in the Hungarian army, of the Jewish ghetto, of his escape to Palestine where he served in an underground group sabotaging the British forces, and of how he tried to save the widow of a Nazi who tortured Jews. His father's story prompts the son to visit Elhanan's childhood village. Writing with great poignancy, Wiesel once again proves to be the most significant chronicler of the Holocaust. (Reviewed Mar. 1, 1992)0671689703George Cohen"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review:
"Nobel Peace Prize winner Wiesel ( Sages and Dreamers ) reprises the themes of memory and forgetting in this almost unbearably moving novel. Elhanan Rosenbaum, one of the few Jews in his Romanian village to have survived WW II, is a widower whose adored wife died giving birth to their only child. Decades later, he is losing his memory to an unspecified illness. Horrified at the possibility that all he has witnessed will be surrendered to oblivion, he entrusts his life's story--and the stories of the people he alone remembers--to his son, Malkiel, a reporter for the New York Times . At Elhanan's request, Malkiel travels to the Carpathian mountains to explore the mysteries that still confound his father. There he pores over the tombstones in the Jewish cemetery, the legacy of a once-thriving community, and meets the gravedigger. In one of the most poignant passages in an already tender novel, the gravedigger tells the story of the Great Reunion: as the Nazis deport the last Jews, the ghosts of the village's rabbinical judges convene to avenge the fate of their now-extinct congregation. Malkiel begins to comprehend the relations between memory and grace, courage and forgiveness. Here and there a sentence sinks into sentimentality (``Twenty years of sun, laughter, a free and savage joy, were inscribed on her fine and angular Oriental face''), but the integrity of Wiesel's respect for history and his recognition of its fragility give this novel an impact simple in its strength and complex in its dimensions. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
|| New York :Summit Books,1992
Translation of: L'oublié.
237 pages ; 25 cm