Reviews for Sandcastle Girls : Library Edition

AudioFile Reviews 2012 September
Narrators Cassandra Campbell and Alison Fraser travel through time with alacrity in their narration of Bohjalian's novel, based on his own family's saga. In horrific detail the story unveils the Armenian genocide of 1915 as discovered by a contemporary writer who accidentally exhumes her grandparents' past. The narrators balance the frivolities of Laura Petrosian's childhood in her grandparents' exotically detailed American home with revelations from the journals and letters she uncovers. These documents detail the earlier lives of her grandparents, American Elizabeth Endicott, who comes to Turkey to aid Armenian orphans, and Armen, an Armenian, who enters military service after his beloved wife and daughter become victims of the slaughter. As the couple comes together in an unlikely romance, they're struck by an awful twist of fate. Campbell and Fraser convey the toll of war on the vast cast--from orphans to diplomats, physicians to soldiers. D.P.D. © AudioFile 2012, Portland, Maine

Library Journal Reviews 2012 December #1

Bohjalian offers a chilling retelling of the little-known 1915 Turkish genocide of Armenians. The story is told from the perspective of multiple characters, including American good Samaritan Elizabeth Endicott during the genocide and in the present day by an Armenian descendant, Laura Petrosian. Laura explores historical documents and family secrets while the characters from the earlier era reveal the ravages of the slaughter, torture, and extermination of Armenian men, women, and children. In an unmistakable irony, two German soldiers' photographs of the refugees and their suffering help to link the generations and serve as a horrifying precursor to the Nazi Holocaust. Bohjalian spares no details while creating both a love story and a mystery amid the tragedy. Dual readers Cassandra Campbell and Alison Fraser are excellent in voice and pacing. The audio program includes an afterword and author interview. VERDICT Highly recommended as adult fiction and historical artifact. ["Bohjalian powerfully narrates an intricately nuanced romance with a complicated historical event at the forefront. With the centennial of the Armenian genocide fast approaching, this is not to be missed. Simply astounding," read the review of the Doubleday hc, LJ 6/1/12.--Ed.]--Joyce Kessel, Villa Maria Coll., Buffalo

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