Orhan's Inheritance (Paperback)

By Aline Ohanesian

Algonquin Books, 9781616205300, 368pp.

Publication Date: January 19, 2016

April 2015 Indie Next List

“Debut author Ohanesian's historical novel relives the nearly forgotten tragedy of the Armenian genocide during and after WWI. Through deportations, massacres, and executions of Christian and Jewish Armenians, the Ottoman Empire and its successors eliminated 1.5 million citizens. Ohanesian's beautifully written book shares a tale of passionate love, unspeakable horror, incredible strength, and the hidden stories that haunt a family. Highly recommended.”
— Doug Robinson, Eagle Eye Book Shop, Decatur, GA
View the List
Advertisement

Description

When Orhan's brilliant and eccentric grandfather, Kemal Turkoglu, who built a dynasty out of making kilim rugs, is found dead, submerged in a vat of dye, Orhan inherits the decades-old business. But Kemal has left the family estate to a stranger thousands of miles away, an aging woman in a retirement home in Los Angeles. Intent on righting this injustice, Orhan unearths a story that, if told, has the power to undo the legacy upon which Orhan's family is built, a story that could unravel his own future.

"Breathtaking and expansive . . . Proof that the past can sometimes rewrite the future." --Christina Baker Kline, author of Orphan Train

"Stunning . . . At turns both subtle and transcendent." --Los Angeles Review of Books

"To take the tumultuous history of Turks and Armenians in the early part of this century, and to tell the stories of families and lovers from the small everyday moments of life to the terrible journeys of death, to make a novel so engrossing and keep us awake--that is an accomplishment, and Aline Ohanesian's first novel is such a wonderful accomplishment." --Susan Straight, author of Highwire Moon

"Rich, tragic, compelling, and realized with deep care and insight." --Elle

"A book with a mission, giving a voice to history's silent victims." --The New York Times Book Review

"Orhan's Inheritance illuminates human nature while portraying a devastating time in history . . . A remarkable debut novel that exhibits an impressive grasp of history as well as narrative intensity and vivid prose." --Minneapolis Star Tribune

"A remarkable debut from an important new voice. It tells us things we thought we knew and shows us we had no idea. Beautiful and terrible and, finally, indelible." --Luis Alberto Urrea, author of Queen of America


Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com

  1. Setting plays such a significant role in Orhan’s Inheritance. How do the two settings, Karod village in Turkey and the Ararat Home in Los Angeles, affect the characters?generic viagra price canada
  2. Why do you think Kemal dies the way he does? What is the symbolism of the vat of dye?generic viagra price canada
  3. Orhan’s early photography was so focused on abstraction that he failed to see the world around him clearly. How does Orhan’s early photography compare with his later work, when he takes up the camera again? In what way does he see the world differently?generic viagra price canada
  4. Do you think words construct meaning differently than visual images do, whether drawn or photographed?generic viagra price canada
  5. How are Orhan and Seda similar when it comes to their relationship with their pasts? What is Ani’s perspective on the past? What do you think these characters learn from one another?generic viagra price canada
  6. Lucine’s father, Hairig, defines strength as adaptability. How would you describe Lucine’s strength? What are the qualities that help her survive this ordeal?generic viagra price canada
  7. At what point does Seda stop speaking? Why do you think she makes this choice?generic viagra price canada
  8. Do your feelings about Fatma change in the course of the novel? If so, how?generic viagra price canada
  9. Why does Lucine feel that she and Kemal can never be together?generic viagra price canada
  10. There are many instances of individual and collective guilt in the story as exemplified in the war scenes with Kemal and his soldier friends. Do you think there’s such a thing as collective guilt? If so, is it easier to bear and what are its effects?generic viagra price canada
  11. Once Orhan knows about his family’s and country’s history, how do you think he should respond? Do you think he’s done enough by the end of the novel?generic viagra price canada
  12. Much of the novel grapples with the power of words as well as their insufficiency. How important are the words we use to describe someone or something? Why does it matter what Orhan calls Fatma or whether we call what happened in 1915 a genocide?generic viagra price canada
Advertisement