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Maverick Ross
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L'Orangeraie by Larry Tremblay: A Powerful Novel about War and Choices




L'Orangeraie is a short novel by Larry Tremblay, a Canadian writer, director, actor, and specialist in Kathakali, an Indian dance theater form. Published in 2013, it has won several literary awards and has been translated into many languages. It tells the story of two twin brothers, Amed and Aziz, who live in a peaceful orange grove in an unnamed war-torn country. Their lives are shattered when their grandparents are killed by a bomb, and a terrorist leader named Soulayed convinces their father, Zahed, to sacrifice one of them as a suicide bomber. However, their mother, Tamara, intervenes and persuades Amed to take Aziz's place, saving his brother from certain death. The novel follows their separate destinies as Aziz dies in an explosion, while Amed escapes to Canada, where he becomes an actor. Through theater, he tries to heal his wounds and confront his past.




l 39;orangeraie pdf download



L'Orangeraie is a powerful novel that explores the themes of war, violence, identity, memory, love, and forgiveness. It challenges the reader to reflect on the moral choices that people face in situations of conflict, oppression, and injustice. It also shows how art can be a source of healing, expression, and resistance. In this article, we will summarize the plot of the novel, analyze its main themes, and provide some personal insights.


Summary of the Plot




Part One: The Choice




The first part of the novel introduces us to the main characters and their setting. Amed and Aziz are nine-year-old twins who live with their parents, Zahed and Tamara, in an orange grove near a mountain range. They also have a grandmother, Shahina, who lives nearby with her husband, Mounir. They are happy and carefree children who enjoy playing with their kite and helping their father with his work. They also have a close bond with each other, sharing their thoughts and feelings.


One day, their peaceful life is disrupted by a loud explosion that destroys their grandparents' house. They rush to see what happened and find their grandmother alive but badly injured. Their grandfather is dead. They learn that a bomb was dropped from over the mountains by an enemy army that wants to take over their land. They are devastated by the loss of their loved ones and the destruction of their home.


The next day, a mysterious man named Soulayed arrives at their house. He claims to be a friend of their father and a leader of a resistance group that fights against the enemy. He tells them that he has a plan to avenge their grandparents and protect their land. He says that he needs one of the twins to wear a belt of explosives and go to the enemy camp, where he will meet a young boy who will guide him to the barracks. There, he will detonate the belt and kill many soldiers, becoming a martyr and a hero. He says that this is the only way to stop the enemy from bombing their village again.


Zahed is shocked and reluctant to agree, but Soulayed convinces him that this is his duty as a father and a patriot. He tells him that he has to choose one of his sons to sacrifice for the cause. Zahed is torn between his love for his children and his loyalty to his country. He decides to choose Aziz, the weaker and sicker of the twins, thinking that he will suffer less and that Amed will have a better chance of survival. He tells Tamara about his decision, but she is horrified and angry. She begs him to change his mind, but he refuses. He says that he has to do this for their family and their people.


Tamara then secretly goes to Amed and tells him what his father has decided. She asks him to take Aziz's place and wear the belt of explosives instead. She says that she loves them both equally, but that she knows that Amed is stronger and smarter than Aziz, and that he can find a way to escape from Soulayed's plan. She says that she wants to save Aziz from dying in vain, and that she hopes that Amed will forgive her for asking him to do this. Amed is shocked and scared, but he agrees to do what his mother asks. He loves his brother more than anything, and he trusts his mother more than his father. He swaps clothes with Aziz and puts on the belt of explosives.


Part Two: The Consequences




The second part of the novel follows the consequences of the choice that Zahed and Tamara made for their sons. It shows how their lives are changed forever by the events that follow.


Aziz wakes up in his brother's clothes and realizes what has happened. He sees Amed leaving with Soulayed, wearing the belt of explosives. He tries to stop him, but it is too late. He runs after them, hoping to catch up with them before they reach the enemy camp. He is afraid for his brother's life, and he feels guilty for being spared from death.


Amed follows Soulayed to the enemy camp, pretending to be Aziz. He is terrified and confused, but he remembers his mother's words and hopes to find a way out. He meets the young boy who is supposed to guide him to the barracks, but he does not trust him. He thinks that he is a spy or a traitor who works for Soulayed. He decides to run away from him and look for another exit.


However, as he runs, he sees a group of soldiers playing soccer with some children. He is surprised by this sight, as he expected to see only enemies and monsters. He realizes that they are human beings like him, who have families and friends, who laugh and cry, who love and hate. He feels a sudden compassion for them, and he wonders why they have to fight and kill each other.


He decides to take off the belt of explosives and throw it away. He does not want to be part of Soulayed's plan anymore. He does not want to die or kill anyone else. He wants to live and be free.


However, as he tries to remove the belt, it explodes in his hands. He dies instantly, along with several soldiers and children who were nearby.


Zahed hears the explosion from his house and thinks that it was Aziz who detonated the belt. He is proud of his son for fulfilling his mission and becoming a martyr. He thinks that he has done the right thing for his family and his country.


Tamara hears the explosion from her house and knows that it was Amed who detonated the belt. She is heartbroken and furious. She thinks that she has failed her son and that he died for nothing. She blames Zahed for his choice and Soulayed for his manipulation. She wants to leave him and take Aziz with her.


Aziz survives the explosion and is taken to a hospital by some soldiers. He is wounded and traumatized, but he is alive. He tells them his name and his story, and they are amazed by his courage and honesty. They decide to help him and contact a humanitarian organization that can take him to a safe place.


He is eventually adopted by a Canadian couple, who give him a new name and a new life. He grows up in Montreal, where he attends school and makes friends. He also discovers his passion for theater, which helps him express his emotions and cope with his past.


He never forgets his brother, his mother, or his father. He wonders what happened to them and if they are still alive. He hopes to see them again someday.


Part Three: The Ending




The third part of the novel shows the ending of the story, which is also the beginning of a play. It reveals the message of the author and the purpose of the novel.


Amed, now called Michael, is a successful actor who is about to perform in a play based on his own life. He has written and directed the play himself, as a way of honoring his brother and telling his truth. He plays the role of Amed, while another actor plays the role of Aziz.


The play begins with the scene of the explosion that killed Amed and several others. It then goes back in time and shows the events that led to that moment, from the bombing of their grandparents' house to the swap of the twins. It also shows the aftermath of the explosion, from the reactions of Zahed and Tamara to the new life of Aziz in Canada.


The play ends with the scene of the reunion of Amed and Aziz, which is also a scene of imagination and fantasy. Amed appears on stage as a ghost, wearing the belt of explosives. He meets Aziz, who is now an adult, wearing a suit. They hug each other and talk about their lives, their dreams, their regrets, and their love. They forgive each other and themselves for what they did or did not do. They say goodbye and wish each other peace.


The play ends with a blackout, followed by a standing ovation from the audience. Amed/Michael bows and thanks them for their attention and appreciation. He dedicates the play to his brother, Aziz/Michael, who is watching from the front row. He also dedicates it to all the victims of war and violence in the world. He says that he hopes that his play will inspire people to choose life over death, love over hate, and art over war.


Analysis of the Themes




War and Violence




One of the main themes of L'Orangeraie is war and violence, and how they affect individuals and families. The novel portrays the horrors of war in a realistic and vivid way, showing its physical, psychological, and emotional consequences.


The novel criticizes the use of violence as a means of revenge or justice, as it only leads to more violence and suffering. It exposes the hypocrisy and manipulation of those who justify or glorify war in the name of religion, nationalism, or ideology. It questions the morality and rationality of those who sacrifice innocent lives for a cause that they do not fully understand or agree with.


The novel also explores the ethical dilemmas that people face in situations of conflict, oppression, and injustice. It shows how people have to make difficult choices that have no easy or clear answers. It shows how people have to deal with guilt, remorse, anger, fear, or doubt about their actions or inactions. The novel also shows how war and violence can be resisted or transformed through non-violent means, such as art, education, or dialogue. It shows how people can find hope and healing in the midst of despair and pain. It shows how people can create and share stories that challenge the dominant narratives of war and violence.


Identity and Memory




Another theme of L'Orangeraie is identity and memory, and how they are shaped by trauma and displacement. The novel shows the impact of war on the identity and memory of the characters, especially Amed and Aziz.


The novel depicts the struggle of Amed to cope with his past and his present, as he tries to reconcile his two identities: Amed, the child who grew up in an orange grove and who killed his brother; and Michael, the adult who lives in Canada and who is a successful actor. He suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, nightmares, flashbacks, and guilt. He feels alienated from his culture, his family, and himself. He also feels conflicted about his role as an artist, as he wonders if he is exploiting or honoring his story.


The novel also suggests the importance of remembering and honoring the victims of war, as well as the survivors. It shows how memory can be a source of strength, resistance, or healing, but also a source of pain, confusion, or denial. It shows how memory can be preserved or distorted, depending on who tells it and how. It shows how memory can be shared or silenced, depending on who listens to it and why.


Love and Forgiveness




A third theme of L'Orangeraie is love and forgiveness, and how they can overcome hatred and resentment. The novel illustrates the power of love and forgiveness in different forms and contexts.


The novel contrasts the roles of Tamara and Zahed as parents and as spouses. Tamara represents the unconditional love that a mother has for her children, as well as the courage that a woman has to defy patriarchal norms and expectations. She is willing to risk everything to save her son from death, even if it means betraying her husband and her country. She is also willing to forgive her husband for his choice, even if it means losing her son forever. Zahed represents the conditional love that a father has for his children, as well as the pressure that a man has to conform to social norms and expectations. He is willing to sacrifice one of his sons for a cause that he does not fully understand or agree with, even if it means hurting his wife and his other son. He is also unable to forgive himself for his choice, even if it means gaining a new son in Canada.


The novel also demonstrates the possibility of reconciliation and peace between enemies or strangers. It shows how Amed/Michael finds love and friendship in Canada, where he meets people who accept him for who he is and who support him in his journey. It shows how Aziz/Michael finds love and forgiveness in his brother's ghost, who appears to him on stage and who tells him that he does not blame him for what happened. It shows how they both find love and forgiveness in themselves, as they acknowledge their mistakes and their achievements.


Conclusion




L'Orangeraie is a powerful novel that deals with complex and sensitive issues such as war, violence, identity, memory, love, and forgiveness. It tells the story of two twin brothers who are separated by a tragic choice that their parents make for them. It follows their different destinies as one dies in an explosion while the other escapes to Canada. It shows how they cope with their past and their present through theater.


The novel challenges the reader to reflect on the moral choices that people face in situations of conflict, oppression, and injustice. It also shows how art can be a source of healing, expression, and resistance. It is a novel that inspires hope and compassion in a world that often seems hopeless and cruel.


I personally enjoyed reading this novel because it made me think about the human cost of war and the role of art in society. It also made me feel empathy and admiration for the characters, especially Amed and Aziz, who showed courage and resilience in the face of adversity. I think that this novel is a valuable contribution to the literature of war and peace, as it offers a different perspective and a different voice from the usual ones.


FAQs




Here are some frequently asked questions about L'Orangeraie and their answers:



Question


Answer


Who is Larry Tremblay and what is his background?


Larry Tremblay is a Canadian writer, director, actor, and specialist in Kathakali, an Indian dance theater form. He was born in 1954 in Chicoutimi, Quebec. He has written more than 30 books, including novels, plays, poems, and essays. He has also directed and performed in many theater productions, both in Canada and abroad. He is a professor of theater at the Université du Québec à Montréal.


What is the genre and style of L'Orangeraie?


L'Orangeraie is a novel that can be classified as a war novel, a psychological novel, or a bildungsroman (a novel of education or formation). It is written in a simple and clear language, with short sentences and paragraphs. It uses a third-person omniscient narrator, who knows the thoughts and feelings of all the characters. It also uses some elements of fantasy and magic realism, such as the appearance of Amed's ghost or the transformation of Aziz into a bird.


Where and when does the story take place?


The story takes place in an unnamed country that is divided by war and violence. The author does not specify the exact location or time period of the story, but he gives some clues that suggest that it could be somewhere in the Middle East or North Africa, in the late 20th or early 21st century. The story also takes place in Canada, where Amed/Aziz moves after the explosion.


What are some of the symbols and motifs used in the novel?


The novel uses several symbols and motifs to convey its themes and messages. Some of them are: - The orange grove: It symbolizes the innocence and happiness of childhood, as well as the beauty and fragility of nature. It also represents the homeland and the identity of the characters, which are threatened by war and violence. - The kite: It symbolizes the freedom and joy of flying, as well as the hope and dreams of the twins. It also represents their bond and their communication, which are severed by their separation. - The belt of explosives: It symbolizes the death and destruction caused by war and terrorism, as well as the manipulation and coercion of those who use them. It also represents the choice and the sacrifice that Amed/Aziz has to make for his brother. - The theater: It symbolizes the art and creativity that can heal and transform trauma and pain, as well as express and resist injustice and oppression. It also represents the identity and memory that Amed/Michael tries to preserve and share through his play.


How can I download L'Orangeraie in PDF format?


You can download L'Orangeraie in PDF format from various online sources, such as Amazon Kindle, Google Books, or Project Gutenberg. However, you may need to pay a fee or register an account to access some of them. You can also borrow or buy a physical copy of the book from your local library or bookstore.




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