A Mad Desire to Dance

By Elie Wiesel; Catherine Temerson (Translator); Mark Bramhall (Read by); Kirsten Potter (Read by)
(Random House Audio, Compact Disc, 9780739382066)

Publication Date: February 17, 2009

Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover, Paperback, Paperback

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Description

A searing exploration of a man haunted by the horrors of the twentieth century, a man who feels he must be going mad but who finds a way out of the darkness.
    
Doriel is a European transplanted to New York who carries with him a profound sense of desperation and loss. His mother, a resistance leader, survives the war but dies in a car crash with her husband soon afterward. Doriel's longing for his parents, and a longing to know his family's secrets, haunts him and denies him the chance for happiness or intimacy with women. The intense study of Judaism offers him no solace; to the contrary, he comes to believe he is haunted by a dybbuk. His visits to Israel land him in anti-Zionist enclaves where only the coming of the Messiah is important.

A child during the war, all he knows of the Holocaust comes from movies, newsreels, and books. But it is enough. Five years of psychoanalysis brings him to a crossroads. Finally he comes to grips with his mother's secret -- a wartime affair -- and the process triggers in him a new understanding that only love can heal the most intimate of wounds.




About the Author

Elie Wiesel is the author of more than forty books, including his unforgettable international best sellers Night and A Beggar in Jerusalem, winner of the Prix Médicis. He has been awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States Congressional Gold Medal, and the French Legion of Honor with the rank of Grand Cross. In 1986, he received the Nobel Peace Prize. He is Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities and University Professor at Boston University.




Praise For A Mad Desire to Dance

Praise for A Mad Desire to Dance

“A soaring explanation of a soul devastated by horrorism in a world off its rocker, A Mad Desire to Dance cannot be called comfy, not by a long shot. But in its own highstepping yet paradoxically heart-wracking way, it can most assuredly be considered beautiful (almost beyond belief).”
-Judith Fitzgerald, The Philadelphia Inquirer

“Tales in A Mad Desire to Dance just pour out of the author like the Talmudic ma’ayan hamitgaber, the wellspring that never runs dry . . . Wiesel proves again that he is a master storyteller who can weave a complex tapestry of plots into an intricately poignant human portrait.”
-Ari L. Goldman, Moment magazine

A Mad Desire to Dance is the novel Elie Wiesel was born–or more accurately, survived–to write . . . There are many truths buried in this book; that you have to work a little harder, dig a little deeper, to find them makes the experience all the more meaningful.”
-Curt Schleier, Milwaulkee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel

“Elie Wiesel once more confirms his influence as a master storyteller who can weave an intricate narrative into a complex portrait of a man at once obliterated and remade.”
-M.E. Collins, Chicago Sun-Times

“Austerely written and . . . thought-provoking.”
-Mike Peed, The New York Times Book Review

“Elie Wiesel continues to be the ultimate witness to history’s worst enormity, and its fiercest moral voice for remembrance . . . [A Mad Desire to Dance] takes patience and close reading, but those who stay with it will derive a significant level of satisfaction . . . from the seemingly simple yet stirring reminder that love can soothe, even if it cannot completely heal, the most horrendous wounds.”
-Gerald Sorin, Haaretz

“Artfully developed . . . Wiesel is a master storyteller.”
-Alvin H. Rosenfeld, The New Leader

“Alternately rough and tender . . . A Mad Desire to Dance begins ominously and ends beautifully . . . No matter if your faith lies with science, religion, or both, A Mad Desire to Dance offers a tantalizing conversion experience for the philosopher in you.”
-Andrew Burstein, The Baton Rouge Advocate

“Vivid . . . This novel is filled with gorgeous prose.”
-Kevin O’Kelly, The Boston Globe

A Mad Desire to Dance shows the sensibility of a literary wanderer who has not finished searching for answers to his original anguished questions . . . A reader willing to navigate the thickets will find rewards. The novel’s . . . satisfactions lie in a sense of shared responsibility between teller and listener, a confidential yet far-reaching partnership that began four decades ago with Night.”
-Donna Rifkind, The Washington Post

“The novel . . . ends on an affirmative note, a triumph of life’s dance of desire over the madness that is a living death. Philosophy meets psychology in this profound, often poetic novel.”
-Starred review, Kirkus

“It is once again a survivor’s memories . . . that will rivet readers . . . The terse personal vignettes are gripping . . . The secrets surprise you to the end.”
-Booklist

“Difficult but powerful . . . Wiesel handles the situation expertly, and . . . a multilayered narrative emerges: the journey through sadness and toward redemption; a meditation on the hand dealt to Holocaust survivors; and a valuable parable on the wages of human trauma. While the novel is not always easy sledding, there are ample rewards–intellectual and visceral–for the willing reader.”
-Publishers Weekly

And praise from France for A Mad Desire to Dance

A Mad Desire to Dance reminds us, with force, that Wiesel’s writing is alive and strong. The master has once again found here a startling freshness.”
-Le Monde des Livres

“A genuine adventure that enriches the reader.”
-L’Eclaireur

A Mad Desire to Dance [is] an interior adventure driven by the need to know–and the certitude–that only love can heal our most intimate wounds.”
-France Culture

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