Lost Words: An Armenian Story of Survival and Hope (Hardcover)

Lost Words: An Armenian Story of Survival and Hope By Leila Boukarim, Sona Avedikian (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Leila Boukarim, Sona Avedikian (Illustrator)
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Based on a true family story, this inspiring picture book about the Armenian Genocide shares an often-overlooked history and honors the resilience of the Armenian people.

What is it like to walk away from your home? To leave behind everything and everyone you’ve ever known? Poetic, sensitive, and based on a true family history, Lost Words follows a young Armenian boy from the day he sets out to find refuge to the day he finally finds the courage to share his story.

“It is difficult to find the words to describe the type of loss a Genocide can cause to a young child. I’ve been looking for something similar for my own son. This picture book is a good start to help explain loss and raise the many questions necessary to start the conversation.”—Serj Tankian, activist, artist, and lead vocalist for System of a Down

INTERGENERATIONAL CONNECTION: This story is a reassuring testament to the bond between parent and child, and the love people pass down to future generations through shared stories.

ENCOURAGES COMPASSION: In the midst of the current international refugee crisis, stories of refugees and immigrants are an evocative reminder of the importance of showing kindness and empathy to strangers from all walks of life.

UNIVERSAL STORY: While this story specifically centers Armenians, it also speaks to a shared experience of many people across the globe. Reckoning with loss after a traumatic event is a common experience that many people can relate to, but the poignancy of this story delivers a powerful message of hope, courage, and remembrance.

UNDERREPRESENTED NARRATIVE: There are thought to be well over one million Armenians in the U.S., yet there are no known picture books about the Armenian Genocide. This moving portrait of family is a recognition of strength and resilience in the face of oppression, and a loving ode to a thriving community that refused to be silenced.

Perfect for:
  • The Armenian and Armenian American community
  • Anyone interested in learning about Armenian history and culture
  • Readers seeking engaging stories of migration and refugee experience
  • Parents and grandparents
  • Teachers and librarians

About the Author

Leila Boukarim writes stories for children that inspire empathy and encourage meaningful discussions. She enjoys reading (multiple books at a time), embroidering, nature walking, and spending time with people, listening to their stories and sharing her own. Leila lives in Berlin, Germany. You can visit her at leilaboukarim.com.

Sona Avedikian is an Armenian illustrator born in Beirut, Lebanon, and currently based in Detroit, Michigan. She loves creating vibrant work and often takes inspiration from Armenian art and architecture. You can find more of her work at sonaavedikian.com.

Praise For…

“Heartbreaking yet warmly tinged with hope.” — Kirkus Reviews

“A necessary and well-crafted picture book about a part of world history too often ignored.” — The Horn Book Magazine

“Boukarim traces the protagonist growing up, having “lost my words” to discuss these experiences, even through adulthood—until an intergenerational moment opens a pathway to the past.” — Publishers Weekly

Product Details
ISBN: 9781797213651
ISBN-10: 1797213652
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Publication Date: March 26th, 2024
Pages: 44
Language: English