Thursday, May 28, 2015

ORHAN'S INHERITANCE by Aline Ohanesian

The discord between the Turks and the Armenians comes alive in Ohanesian’s book that details three generations of those two groups that once occupied the same land.  The book begins in 1990 with the reading of a will.  Orhan, a Turk, has been left his family’s business, but not the family home, in the will written by his grandfather.  The home has been left to an unknown woman living in California. Orhan’s father is enraged. He and Orhan’s Auntie have been left with no stake in the family’s Kilim rug factory and only an apartment building in another town in which to live.
Orhan flies off to meet the Californian, Seda, an aged Armenian, in an effort to regain the family home.  The rest of the book is divided between the events in Armenia just after the close of WWI and the meetings between Orhan and Seda.
The connection between the two families is compelling reading.  The horror of the Armenian genocide is rendered in a beautifully written tale of love, horror, forgiveness, deceit, discrimination, fear, kindness, anger and, finally, understanding.
5 of 5 stars

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