A mother and son’s fictional journey to escape the Armenian Genocide and start anew.
Like any other fifteen-year-old boy, Aram might never have written the events of his still young life, except that he found himself suddenly plunged into exile, fleeing certain death. In 1915, the Ottoman authorities undertook the wholesale extermination of the Armenian people; hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children like Aram suffered one of the twentieth century’s most savage persecutions. Inspired by the plight of the murdered modernist poet Daniel Varoujan (1884–1915), this novel follows Aram and his widowed mother on their flight toward a new life on—and under—the sea. From recollections of his father’s meditations on Homer to a life-changing apprenticeship as a coral fisherman off the coasts of Cataluña and Marseille, Aram’s tale dives into a future that might help redeem a harrowing past. Aram’s Notebook examines the Armenian Genocide through a narrative in which poets and poetry loom large. Aram’s tale evokes a struggle not simply for physical survival, but for saving memory from the clutches of destruction. Evocatively translated from the original Catalan by Ara Merjian.