The Age of Orphans: A Novel
Told with an evocative richness of language that recalls Michael Ondaatje or Anita Desai, the story of Reza Khourdi is that of the 20th century everyman, cast out from the clan in the name of nation, progress and modernity who cannot help but leave behind a shadow that yearns for the impossible dreams of love, land and home.
Before following his father into battle, he had been like any other Kurdish boy: in love with his Maman, fascinated by birds and the rugged Zagros mountains, dutiful to his stern and powerful Baba. But after he becomes orphaned in a massacre by the armies of Iran's new Shah, Reza Pahlavi I.; he is taken in by the very army that has killed his parents, re-named Reza Khourdi, and indoctrinated into the modern, seductive ways of the newly minted nation, careful to hide his Kurdish origins with every step.
The Age of Orphans follows Reza on his meteoric rise in ranks, his marriage to a proud Tehrani woman and his eventual deployment, as Capitan, back to the Zagros Mountains and the ever-defiant Kurds. Here Reza is responsible for policing, and sometimes killing, his own people, and it is here that his carefully crafted persona begins to fissure and crack.
What people are saying - Write a review
The Age of Orphans: A NovelUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
The 2008 recipient of a Whiting Writers' Award, Khadivi offers a remarkable first novel that does not shy away from harsh subject matter. This first installment in a trilogy about three generations of ... Read full review
Other editions - View all
Abadaan Street afternoon Agha Allahu akbar arms ay Khoda baba baba’s babe Baluch barracks beneath birds blood body boots boy’s breast cadets captain cave chador child Clack clap clean conscripts cousins dark dead divan earth empty eyes face father ﬁelds ﬁght ﬁgure ﬁll ﬁlled ﬁnally ﬁnd ﬁngers ﬁre ﬁrst night ﬁst ﬂat ﬂesh ﬂock ﬂoor ﬂy girl hair hands head heart horses Iran keep Kermanshah Khourdi Kurd boy Kurdish land laugh lavash lips listen look Mahabad maman Mashhad Meena morning mother mountains mouth move neck nods orphan Persia pulled pushed reﬂection republic of Mahabad Reza Reza’s riﬂe rock samovar Saqqez sarbaz scream shah oh shah shah soldiers shah’s Shahenshah shoulders shouts silent skin sleep smell smile smoke soft song stand stares stone Tehran tell turn uncles village walk watch whore wife woman women Ya Ali Zagros