barbara nadel

Belshazzar’s daughter

Author: Barbara Nadel

Language: English

Summary: Tourist brochures present Istanbul as a glamorous, modern city, but the brochures don’t make much mention of Balat, a decrepit neighborhood of narrow, twisting alleys and crumbling tenements. Until recently it was home to Leonid Meyer, a reclusive elderly Jew who, like many of his neighbors, came here long ago to escape one of Europe’s various bloodbaths. But Meyer’s refuge ultimately became his coffin, the carnage crowned with a gigantic swastika. A racist murder? Inspector Ikmen has his doubts, and begins tracking down the few people who might have known the old man, including a faded prostitute, a shadowy family of Russian emigres, a dispairing rabbi, and a high-strung young Englishman in the throes of erotic obsession.  The first in a stunningly atmospheric new series from a writer who has deservedly been compared with Michael Dibdin and Donna Leon. – Source:

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Portrait of a Turkish family

Author: Irfan Orga

Language: English

Summary: Describes in chilling, yet affectionate, detail the disintegration of a wealthy Ottoman family, both financially and emotionally. It is rich with the scent of fin de siecle Istanbul in the last days of the Ottoman Empire. His mother was a beauty, married at thirteen, as befitted a Turkish woman of her class. His grandmother was an eccentric autocrat, determined at all costs to maintain her traditional habits. But the war changed everything. Death and financial disaster reigned, the Sultan was overthrown, and Turkey became a republic. The red fez was ousted by the cloth cap, and the family was forced to adapt to an unimaginably impoverished life. Filled with brilliant vignettes of old Turkish life, such as the ritual weekly visit to the hamam, as it tells the “”other side “” of the Gallipoli story, and its impact on one family and the transformation of a nation. Source:

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2 girls

Author: Perihan Magden

Language: English

Summary: It is summer in Istanbul as Behiye prepares to enter one of Turkey’s most prestigious universities. Angry, overweight, and embarrassed by her parents, Behiye longs for salvation from her teenage despair. In the week before she starts university, she is introduced to Handan—a beautiful, gentle girl who will change Behiye’s life forever. Immediately drawn to one another, the two girls embark upon an intense relationship, even though they are from completely different backgrounds with different dreams and ambitions. Their love provokes anger and mistrust, and they are forced to flee their beloved Istanbul. Source:

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My Istanbul

Author: Linda Caldwell

Language: English

Summary: My Istanbul is not a guide book but an expat’s sharing of her love for her adopted city. Her photographs wander through side streets, pick out details, stroll down major thoroughfares, introduce the inhabitants, look at major sites from a different angle, and generally explore the city from her perspective (source:

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