I’m ashamed of myself for putting off blogging for so long–it’s amazing how fast this month has flown by! It’s been an exciting time for the company I work for, because not only has it made some valuable sales and acquisitions, it has also officially been rewarded the honor of creating the fastest supercomputer in the world!
I’ve also kept myself busy after work hours: I’m now half-way into Chris Bohjalian’s The Sandcastle Girls. It’s Bohjalian’s first novel about the Armenian Genocide of the early 20th century, and my first time reading about it in something other than historical texts. Since we’re both Armenians, or “Hyes,” I understand just how vital this experience is for our community.
Much like the Jews, the Armenians are a race bound by tragedy. The genocide is the single most important event in our history, and unlike the Holocaust, it remains unrecognized by its instigator Turkey and the greater portion of the globe–including the United States.
I won’t delve into the details (which you can read about in my memorial post here), but I will say that I feel culturally obligated to read this tale, as well as emotionally exhausted after pages and pages of cruelty, pain, and sorrow. As much as I chuckle about the similarities between my family and the narrator’s, it’s an arduous journey when the horrors of almost 100 years ago are depicted as vividly as if they occurred right before your eyes.
I think that The Sandcastle Girls is a perfect read for me during Thanksgiving, because it makes me so aware of all the good in my life. To celebrate the holiday, I’d like to share the top 5 literary things I’m thankful for this year:
1. I’m thankful for my good health, considering that I have sight and hearing to read and listen to books, as well as capable limbs to drive to the store, grab a tome off the shelf, and cradle it in my hands.
2. I’m thankful that I had parents and teachers who encouraged me to enjoy learning for learning’s sake, and motivate me to challenge myself intellectually.
3. I’m thankful that I live in a country that values the freedom of speech and expression. As much as the crazies have tried to ban certain books, I do not live in Fahrenheit 451 where I can be arrested and disposed of simply for reading. This shouldn’t be a luxury in the rest of the world; it should be a right.
4. I’m thankful that I live in a time period where women are not only allowed to write, they are just as celebrated and successful as their male counterparts. I’m not saying that we don’t have a long feminist road ahead of us (since female authors are still judged by the reproductive choices), but at least we can get Rowling-rich without needing psuedonyms.
5. And one just for fun…I’m thankful that I only have to wait three more weeks until my most anticipated movie release of the year, “The Hobbit!” Dwarves and dragons, I’m so excited!!!