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Anger provides inspiration for book

Anger provides inspiration for book
Tuesday, October 30, 2007

New York Times reporter Nicholas Gage uses the dramatic events of his life as material for his books. Some stories are based on his experiences as an award-winning investigative reporter and others are memories. 'Eleni' is one of them

Yeliz ÖZ – ISTANBUL Hürriyet


 New York Times reporter Nicholas Gage found inspiration in the anger he experienced following his mother's death during the 1946-1949 Greek Civil War to write best-selling novel ''Eleni'' that is being displayed at this year's TÜYAP International Book Fair in Istanbul.

    “Eleni” has been translated into 29 languages and has sold 3 million copies worldwide. It has been published in Turkey three times. Gage said that every reader finds something in the novel to which they can relate. “I actually started writing the story of my family's life. But this is a problem for the whole world. We can only understand how big the conflict is when we live it. Apparently I have written the destiny of the world.”

 Nicholas Gage's real name is Nikolas Gacoyanis. He tells the story of the 1946-1949 Civil War in Greece. As the war slowly destroys and burns the country down, the children who lived in villages on the mountains are taken away from their families and are sent to camps in the countries behind the iron curtain. Eleni Gacoyanis, who at the time was 41 years old makes a plan and challenging the traditions of her village and the guerrilla groups for her four daughters and son to escape. When her plan is found out, they execute her.

 

‘It was my destiny'

 Gage, who investigates his mother's death, tells the real face of the war and talks about facing his mother's murderers.

 Gage said that he feels he was destined to write about that turbulent period and the people who experienced them. “I wanted people to remember what the innocent people fought for. I wanted the crimes to be remembered. Because there is a saying; ‘If you try to forget the past mistakes, you can repeat them.'” Gage said that people do not change even if centuries have passed. He added that people commit crimes when they are blinded by their ideologies and lose their freedom.

 “Turkey is in a worrying situation. I hope this does not lead to a civil war. There are specific powers that lead the history. It lasted them centuries to guide the European history. This guidance continues in the Balkans. That's why it is normal to have problems in the world, there are critical areas around the world. The powerful countries should pay attention to them,” said Gage. When he wrote the book he thought the Greek people who grew up in the United States could read it because they would find it interesting, it is telling their story as well. “In my village, ideological conflict used to exist and today the religious conflict is still going on. Innocent people pay the bill when they are stuck in a conflict.''


 

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