After five years of research, writing, re-writing, trashing, getting opinions, re-writing all over again, there is a finished MS called “Vartan’s War.” This is an historical novel, or would like to be one if I can find an agent and/or publisher. All enquiries welcome!
Here is an idea of what it is about:
HISTORICAL NOVEL: VARTAN’S WAR
A boy—an Armenian from Aleppo—becomes a man in the crucible of war and genocide: seeking and finding love, confronting tragedy and betrayal, and wreaking revenge. And then, in advanced old age, reflecting on his life, the human condition, and atonement, through the mystical Persian verse of Rumi and Khayyam.
Vartan’s story is loosely modelled on that of a great-uncle of my wife’s, in whose palatial Beirut house my family and I took refuge during the 1970’s. While the Lebanese Civil war raged outside, we listened spellbound to first-hand stories of the Armenian Genocide, the chaos that followed the war, and his personal drama.
The book conveys the flavour of life in the Levant, especially Aleppo, while telling a suspenseful and sometimes humorous story of espionage and intrigue during the Ottoman-Allied conflict in the Middle East. Its themes are the struggle to reconcile conflicting loyalties (both ethnic and personal) and affections; Vartan’s quest to avenge unspeakable crimes, culminating in a dramatic denouement; and his yearning for atonement, having brought about the deaths of three innocent prostitutes during his terrible act of revenge.
Context. Aleppo has—tragically—been much in the news recently. The book affords a rare insight into what this great and ancient city was like before the wanton and wholesale destruction of the Syrian Civil War, a poignant illustration of what has been lost.