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"Not since Albert Camus has there been such an eloquent spokesman for man. The publication of Day restores Elie Wiesel's original title to the novel initially published in English as The Accident and clearly establishes it as the powerful conclusion to the author's classic trilogy of Holocaust literature, which includes his memoir Night and novel Dawn. In Night it is the 'I' who speaks. In the other two, it is the 'I' who listens and questions. In its opening paragraphs, a successful journalist and Holocaust survivor steps off a New York City curb and into the path of an oncoming taxi. Consequently, most of Wiesel's masterful portrayal of one man's exploration of the historical tragedy that befell him, his family, and his people transpires in the thoughts, daydreams, and memories of the novel's narrator. Torn between choosing life or death, Day again and again returns to the guiding questions that inform Wiesel's trilogy: the meaning and worth of surviving the annihilation of a race, the effects of the Holocaust upon the modern character of the Jewish people, and the loss of one's religious faith in the face of mass murder and human extermination.
For centuries, Jews have remembered the Golem, a creature of clay said to have been given life by the mystical incantations of the mysterious Maharal, Rabbi Yehuda Loew, leader of the Jewish community of 16th-century Prague. Some versions have the Golem as a lovable, clumsy mute; others as a monster like Frankenstein's who turned against his creator, giving a vivid warning against magic and the occult. In this beautiful book, Elie Wiesel has collected many of the legends associated with this enigmatic and elusive figure and retold them as seen through the eyes of a wizened gravedigger who claims to have witnessed as a child the numerous miracles that legend attributes to the Golem. "I, Reuven, son of Yaakov," he begins, "declare under oath that 'Yossel the mute,' the 'Golem made of clay,' deserves to be remembered by our people, our persecuted and assassinated, and yet immortal people, We owe it to him to evoke his fate with love and gratitude ... He was a savior, I tell you." Reuven's Golem is no fool or monster, but a figure of intuition, intelligence, and compassion who may yet return, perhaps in our own generation, to protect the Jews from their enemies.
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