When we were girls, my sister and I shared innumerable books. In elementary school we began with library books (Starring Sally J. Freedman as Herself), and by high school we were onto James Joyce and Tom Wolfe – most recently Anthony Doerr. It’s a habit that’s spanned throughout our entire lives.

One slender book has always remained in my consciousness. Even now, I remember reading this book for the first time with my sister, the two of us horrified, by happenstance of geography and time blessedly never stepping even near the peripheral edges of the profoundest human suffering. The book is Night

We must not see any person as an abstraction. Instead, we must see in every person a universe with its own secrets, with its own treasures, with its own sources of anguish, and with some measure of triumph.

– Elie Wiesel

September 30, 1928-July 2, 2016

Santa Fe, New Mexico


By Brett Ann Stanciu

Brett Ann Stanciu lives with her two daughters in Hardwick, Vermont. Her creative nonfiction book, Unstitched: My Journey to Understand Opioid Addiction and How People and Communities Can Heal, will be published by Steerforth Press in September 2021. Her novel about rural life in Vermont, Hidden View, was published in 2015.

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