Told from four different perspectives, At the Breakfast Table is a story of hidden histories and family secrets, from the author of The Silence of Scheherazade.
Buyukada, Turkey, 2017. In the glow of a late summer morning, family gather for the 100th birthday of the famous artist Shirin Saka. It ought to be a time of fond reminiscence, looking back on a long and fruitful artistic career, on memories spanning almost a century.
But the deep past is something Shirin has spent a lifetime trying to conceal. Her grandchildren, Nur and Fikret, and great-grandchild, Celine, do not know what she's hiding, though they are intimately aware of the secret's psychological consequences. The siblings invite family friend and investigative journalist Burak along to interview Shirin – in celebration of her centenary, and also in the hope of persuading her to open up.
Eventually Shirin begins to express her pain the only way she knows how. She paints a story onto her dining room wall, revealing a history wiped from public consciousness and generations of her family's history.
'Fiercely intelligent, finely textured and achingly beautiful.' Elif Shafak