By Olya Yordanyan
Special to the Mirror-Spectator
BOSTON — Writing a novel about the Armenian Genocide has never been on UK-based writer Eve Makis’ agenda. Makis’ latest book, The Spice Box Letters, is a historical novel capturing the story of an Armenian family, who saw the horrors of the Genocide.
“I didn’t sit down to write a book about the Armenian Genocide. I just wanted to write a story about an ordinary family. And it seems to me that every ordinary Armenian family had been touched by this tragedy,” Makis said in a recent Skype interview.
In the story, siblings Gabriel and Mariam Arakelians become victims of forced deportations, lose their parents and end up in different countries. Mariam goes to the UK, believing her siblings were dead. She did not reveal the past to her family. Only after her death, Mariam’s granddaughter finds her journal and explores the past, making groundbreaking discoveries about her family.
Gabriel settles in Nicosia, Cyprus, spending a lifetime to search for his mother. By the time of narration, he is a grouchy elderly man who wants her granddaughter to marry an Armenian man instead of a Greek.