The Sound Of Silence

December 2011, TimeOut Istanbul (print edition only)

REVIEW: The Lost Word, by Oya Baydar (trans. by Stephanie Ateş)

A strange chorus tells the story in Oya Baydar’s latest novel, The Lost Word. The voice of the book veers between third- and first-person, each main character entering the narrative to interject a question, a lament, a memory, before seamlessly weaving back into the scenery once more.

It’s a bit unsettling at first. But this method of storytelling is wholly appropriate for a novel preoccupied with perceptions of otherness — particularly the ineffability of others’ pain — and the gulfs of understanding that have bred so much senseless violence across Turkey in recent decades.

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