Volume 1 of the Ottoman Quartet
A powerful, beautifully written saga set during the fall of one of history’s greatest empires.
Altan’s “Ottoman Quartet” spans the fifty years between the final decades of the 19th century and the post-WWI rise of Atatürk as both unchallenged leader and visionary reformer of the new Turkey.The four books in the quartet tell the gripping stories of an unforgettable cast of characters, among them: an Ottoman army officer, the Sultan’s personal doctor, a scion of the royal house whose Western education brings him into conflict with his family’s legacy, and a beguiling Turkish aristocrat who, while fond of her emancipated life in Paris, finds herself drawn to a conservative Muslim spiritual leader.
Intrigue, betrayal, love, war, progress, and tradition provide a colorful backdrop against which the lives of these characters play out. All the while, the society that spawned them is transforming and the Sublime Empire disintegrating.
Here is a Turkish saga reminiscent of War and Peace, written in lively, contemporary prose that traces not only the social currents of the time but also the erotic and emotional lives of its characters. The female characters in Altan’s gripping saga will upend prejudices about Turkey, the Middle East, and Muslim nations.
Ahmet Altan, one of today’s most important Turkish writers and journalists, was arrested in September 2016 and is serving a life sentence on false charges. An advocate for Kurdish and Armenian minorities and a strong voice of dissent in his country, his arrest and conviction received widespread international criticism (51 Nobel laureates signed an open letter to Turkey’s president calling for Altan’s release). Altan is the author of ten novels—all bestsellers in Turkey—and seven books of essays. In 2009 he received the Freedom and Future of the Media Prize from the Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig, and in 2011 he was awarded the International Hrant Dink Award. The international bestseller Endgame was his English-language debut, and was named one of the fifty notable works of fiction of 2017 by The Washington Post. Like a Sword Wound is the winner of the prestigious Yunus Nadi Novel Prize in Turkey.