Monday, May 14, 2007

Turkish Delight

#23 - "A Fez of the Heart" by Jeremy Seal

Between the bad-pun title and the fact that it was effectively purchased due to a ridiculous old in-joke, I wasn't expecting much from this one -- but after aging on my shelves for a long long time, lo and behold, it turned out to be pretty damned readable.

Seal uses a search for the fez's origins as a launching pad for an exploration of modern Turkey -- and as gimmicky as that sounds, he pulls it off, mostly because the guy can really write. This just zipped along.

A decade or so old (I think -- it's in the other room, and I can't really be bothered to walk the 15 feet to check), many of the struggles he finds in Turkey are as relevant as ever, especially in light of recent drama. I came away feeling a bit wiser, a bit more knowledgeable about Turkey, and I managed to knock it off in less than a day and still have time to clean the bathroom and drink beer.

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