If there’s a benefit to getting your wisdom tooth out (besides mashed potatoes and ice cream galore), it’s having the perfect excuse to spend a Friday night watching Downton Abbey and finishing a book.
I think the theme of the last few books on my mom’s list is “better than I thought.” That’s mostly because I have low expectations for them, thus why they’ve been saved until the end.
The only reason I was nervous about reading Anita Diamant’s Day After Night was because I’d heard it didn’t live up to the author’s previous novel The Red Tent. And I believe that to be true. But you know what? I don’t remember that much about The Red Tent so it’s hard for me to really say.
Day After Night is the story of a few women in a British-run displaced persons camp in Israel after WWII. The women have all survived the Holocaust in one way or another only to be detained after trying to enter Israel illegally.
It certainly has its flaws. For much of the book, I found it hard to keep the women straight. Perhaps I didn’t pay enough attention but whenever the perspective changed I had to spend a few pages just trying to remember this girl’s background. Also for much of the book, not a whole lot happens. The women eat and sleep and hide the horrors they endured. In some ways it painted a picture of the atrocities of the Holocaust but it didn’t really move the story forward. At the end, though, things pick up speed and you see that there is a point to what’s happening. Not surprisingly, the girls each become more distinct during this time.
I’ve always appreciated Holocaust novels. As horrifying as they are, I think it’s important to keep the stories alive whether in non-fiction or fiction. Day After Night does this and goes one step further. It shows that surviving alone wasn’t enough. The question then became, now what?