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Whittier Reads is an annual citywide literary event that encourages members of the Whittier community to read the same book at the same time and then discuss it in book groups and participate in special programs which are offered at our Libraries.

Whittier Public Library Foundation has been the sponsor for this community wide program from its inception since 2004 and has provided funding for the implementation of this program.

The Whittier Public Library in partnership with the Foundation will offer a variety of programs throughout the month of April for the community.

The selection for the 2018 Whittier Reads is “Orhan's Inheritance” by Aline Ohanesian.

Orhans Inheritance cover

About the book:

"When Orhan's brilliant and eccentric grandfather, Kemal Türkoglu, who built a dynasty out of making kilim rugs, is found dead, submerged in a vat of dye, Orhan inherits the decades-old business. But Kemal has left the family estate to a stranger thousands of miles away, an aging woman in a retirement home in Los Angeles. Intent on righting this injustice, Orhan unearths a story that, if told, has the power to undo the legacy upon which Orhan's family is built, a story that could unravel his own future." from the back cover

Copies of Orhan's Inheritance are available for checkout or for sale at the Whittier Public Library.

About the Author

Aline Ohanesian is the author of critically acclaimed novel, Orhan's Inheritance, which was long listed for the Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize, a Summer 2015 Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers pick, a April 2014 Indie Next pick, and an Amazon Top 25 pick for 2015. The novel was also a finalist for the PEN Bellwether Award for Socially Engaged Fiction. 

Aline was born in Kuwait and immigrated to So. Cal at the age of three. After getting her MA in History, she abandoned her PhD studies when she realized her heart belonged to the novel. She is an alumni of the Bread Loaf and Squaw Valley writer's conferences. She lives and writes in San Juan Capistrano, CA with her husband and two young sons.

Aline Ohanesian photo


Wednesday, April 4:

How Should We Understand Orhan's Inheritance? Presentation by Richard Hovannisian, Ph.D.,

Professor Emeritus, UCLA; Adjunct Professor, USC, & Presidential Fellow, Chapman University - Central Library @ 6:30pm

Saturday, April 7:

Tour of Holy Cross Armenian Apostolic Cathedral and Armenian Genocide Martyrs Monument

Bus leaves Central Library at 10:00am sharp.  Tour includes lunch at Hye Cuisine, $20 per person. 

Saturday, April 14:

David Ulin in Conversation with Aline Ohanesian - Central Library @ 5:00pm

Reception and dinner with the author, Armenian food catered by Golden Skewer Restaurant, Montebello.  Oud music played by Viken Najarian.

- Uptown Senior Center @ 6:30pm - Dinner tickets $60 general public / $55 for members of the WPL Foundation.

Monday, April 16:

Film: Grandma's Tattoos - Branch Library @ 6:30pm

Wednesday, April 18:

Group Discussion of Orhan's Inheritance - Central Library @ 6:30pm (Author will not be present.)

Wednesday, April 25:

Surviving Silence: Armenian Voices at the USC Shoah Foundation Presentation by Sedda Antekelian and Manuk Avedikyan - Branch Library @ 6:30pm 

Friday, April 27:

Music and Dance Performances by the Greg Hosharian Trio and Ara Melkonian Dance Company - Central Library @ 6:30pm


The Whittier Reads 2018 program booklet can be downloaded at the link below:


Library Locations

Whittier Central Library

7344 Washington Ave.
Whittier, CA 90602
(562) 567-9900

Mon-Wed 10am - 9pm
Thu-Fri 10am - 6pm
Sat 10am - 5pm
Sun Closed

Whittwood Branch Library

10537 Santa Gertrudes Ave.
Whittier, CA 90603
(562) 567-9950

Mon-Tue 12pm - 9pm
Wed-Fri 10am - 6pm
Sat 10am - 5pm
Sun Closed