First, do not turn on the lights and let him play. Your job is not to make your little one happy at that hour. It is to teach him to sleep and be able to put himself back to sleep.
Second, sleep begets sleep. Do not cut out naps. If a baby gets overtired, they cannot relax and fall asleep. At 9 months, your LO should be taking two naps....around 10 and 2. Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child is a great resource. Your library probably has it. Definitely check it out.
We did Ferber with all three of our kids (I have an 11 month old but can't update my siggy). We did the gradual extinction method. Let baby cry for 5 minutes. Comfort. Leave. Let baby cry for 7 minutes. Comfort. Leave. Continue adding a couple of minutes up until a maximum point you are comfortable with. My DH went in to comfort each time and it worked much faster once the babies realized they weren't getting me and nursing.