Advance Praise for Out of Turkey


With passion and courage, Out of Turkey tells the story of an Armenian family's dislocation, separation, immigration, struggle and survival. By the end of this saga, narrated chiefly by the author's uncle, there emerges a picture of a family sorely tried by Turkish tyranny but unbroken in spirit.

Though highly partisan, this grim account of the Yessaian's odyssey from a once-peaceful village in central Turkey to an industrial city in the American Mid-west has the ring of bitter truth, balanced by moments of joy, humor, and reconciliation. The book as a whole commands attention through its ominous and stunning immediacy.

Leo Hamalian
City College of New York

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Out of Turkey is must reading for every Armenian, and indeed for every American who should know more about the Armenian genocide. It's more than a book of recollections about the life of Donik Yessaian and the people of Efkereh, an Armenian village decimated by the Ottoman Turks.

As I read each page, I felt the pain and suffering the Yessaian clan had been forced to endure more than 75 years ago. It has a chilling effect that refuses to fade away because present-day Turkey still denies the first genocide of the 20th century.

Some might suggest Harry Yessaian's chilling memoir is just another book for the bookcase. I beg to differ. The family memoirs of the Yessaians of those dark days that befell Efkereh and the burning of Smyrna, could also have been a story about the massacred Tarpinians of Erzeroum, the Sarkisians of Moush, the Manoogians of Sepastia, or the Bedrosians of Van. Out of Turkey is about the depopulation of historical Armenia, and the will of the Yessaian clan to survive and preserve a heritage antedating the birth of Christ.

Should present-day Turkey be held responsible for the crimes of its predecessors? Read Out of Turkey and judge for yourself.

Mitchell Kehetian
The Macomb Daily

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Harry Yessaian's story of his family during the Armenian genocide is analogous to the story of almost every Armenian who went through a similar ordeal but somehow miraculously survived. Harry put his family's suffering on record as testimony, while most of the others who suffered similar fates have been consigned to oblivion. This story is important not only for the Yessaian and Kouradjian families, but for history as well.

Antranig Chalabian,
Author

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A remarkable and moving book. . . Intrinsically very worthwhile and timely.

John Davies, Writer and Book Critic
Award Winning British Editor

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A very moving story . . . can be read in one breath.

Artem Haroutiunian
Professor of American Literature
University of Yerevan
Yerevan, Armenia