"Armenpress" Introduces 38th Bestseller Books List


12:18, 11 October, 2013

YEREVAN, OCTOBER 11, ARMENPRESS. “The Book of Lamentations” by St.

Gregory of Narek tops this week’s “Bestseller Books List” introduced
by “Armenpress” News Agency. As far as the pearl of the medieval
Armenian literature, which is also known to the public as “Narek”
for short, is much in demand in Armenia, “Zangak” printing house
introduced the new publication of the book, which appeared in the
first horizontal of the list. The mystical poem “Book of Lamentations”
has been translated into many languages and has played a significant
role in the development of the Armenian literary language. In 95
grace-filled prayers St. Gregory draws on the exquisite potential of
the Classical Armenian language to translate the pure sighs of the
broken and contrite heart into an offering of words pleasing to God.

The result is an edifice of faith for the ages, unique in Christian
literature for its rich imagery, its subtle theology, its Biblical
erudition, and the sincere immediacy of its communication with God.

This masterpiece by St. Gregory of Narek has always been included in
our bestseller books list.

“Where the Wild Roses Bloom” by Moscow-resident contemporary Armenian
author Mark Aren (Karen Martirosyan) occupies the second position of
this week’s “Bestseller Books List” of “Armenpress” News Agency.

“The Alchemist” novel by contemporary Brazilian author Paulo Coelho
appeared in the third position of the “Bestseller Books List”. This
book has been translated into 67 languages and according to AFP,
it has sold more than 30 million copies in 56 different languages,
becoming one of the best-selling books in history and winning the
Guinness World Record for most translated book by a living author.

“The Alchemist” is followed by “Memories of My Melancholy Whores”
by Columbian author Gabriel García Márquez. The book was translated
into Armenian from the Russian version by Hovhannes Ayvazyan in 2010.

“Memories of My Melancholy Whores” is dedicated to the love affairs
of an old journalist, who falls in love with a young girl.

“Within and Without” by Herman Hesse occupies the fifth place. The
story tells about a young man called Friedrich, who is described as
a man who loves and respects rationality, especially logic and the
sciences. In contrast, he has little respect for unscientific forms of
knowledge. Though tolerant of religion, he does not take it seriously.

He considers mysticism and magic to be pointless and outmoded in
the scientific age. In fact, he despises superstition wherever he
encounters it, especially among educated people. Those who question
the supremacy of science in the wake of recent war and suffering
infuriate him. He grows increasingly disturbed as he senses a rising
interest in the occult as an alternative to science.

Then Friedrich spots a paper pinned to the wall, which awakens memories
of his old friend’s habit of noting an interesting quotation.

To Friedrich’s horror, however, the line written on this paper is an
expression of Erwin’s recent mystical interests: “Nothing is outside,
nothing is inside, for that which is outside is inside.”

The Armenian version of prominent Azerbaijani writer Akram Aylisli’s
“Stone Dreams” published by “Graber” publishing house occupies the
sixth position in the bestseller books list. Artak Vardanyan translated
the novel into Armenian. Aram Ananyan authored the preface of the
book and the publication was edited by Seyranuhi Geghamyan.

Aylisli’s “Stone Dreams” novel caused a lot of noise and hysteria in
Azerbaijan. On February 7, 2013, the President of Azerbaijan Ilham
Aliyev signed a presidential decree that stripped Aylisli of the
title of “People’s Writer” and the presidential pension. Earlier,
Aylisli confirmed reports that his son, a customs official, and wife
were dismissed from their jobs.

“The Castle” by Franz Kafka occupies the seventh position of the list.

In it a protagonist, known only as K., struggles to gain access to the
mysterious authorities of a castle who govern the village for unknown
reasons. Kafka died before finishing the work, but suggested it would
end with the Land Surveyor dying in the village; the castle notifying
him on his death bed that his “legal claim to live in the village was
not valid, yet, taking certain auxiliary circumstances into account,
he was permitted to live and work there”. Dark and at times surreal,
The Castle is often understood to be about alienation, bureaucracy, the
seemingly endless frustrations of man’s attempts to stand against the
system, and the futile and hopeless pursuit of an unobtainable goal.

“Tropic of Cancer” by Henry Miller occupies the eighth position of
this week’s list. It was first published in 1934 by the Obelisk Press
in Paris, France, but this edition was banned in the United States.

Its publication in 1961 in the U.S. by Grove Press led to obscenity
trials that tested American laws on pornography in the early 1960s. In
1964, the U.S. Supreme Court declared the book non-obscene. It is
widely regarded as an important masterpiece of 20th century literature.

“The Book of Whispers” by contemporary Armenian writer Varujan
Vosganian occupies the ninth position of our ranking list. The
Book of Whispers begins in a picturesque register, on a lane of
the Armenian quarter of FocÅ~_ani in the 1950s, among the steam of
freshly roasted coffee and the scents of grandmother Armenuhi’s larder,
among the old books and photographs of grandfather Garabet. But the
reader is not left to savour the intimacy of this hearth and home and
nor is he invited to chat with the merry folk who in peacetime spin
stories about Ara the Fair and Tigran the Great. Varujan Vosganian’s
“old Armenians from childhood” have no delectable tales to tell,
but rather events that are thoroughly disturbing. In narrating these
events, they attempt to disburden themselves of a trauma – their own
and that of their forbears.

“The Shagreen Skin” (La Peau de chagrin) by French novelist and
playwright Honoré de Balzac occupies the final position. Set in
early 19th-century Paris, it tells the story of a young man who
finds a magic piece of shagreen that fulfills his every desire. For
each wish granted, however, the skin shrinks and consumes a portion
of his physical energy. La Peau de chagrin belongs to the Ã~Itudes
philosophiques group of Balzac’s sequence of novels, La Comédie

Before the book was completed, Balzac created excitement about it
by publishing a series of articles and story fragments in several
Parisian journals. Although he was five months late in delivering
the manuscript, he succeeded in generating sufficient interest that
the novel sold out instantly upon its publication. A second edition,
which included a series of twelve other “philosophical tales”, was
released one month later.

© 2009 ARMENPRESS.am


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