Subtitled, “A tale of mystery, suspense and romance in the 16th century court of Suleyman the Magnificent”, this book is the self-published work and long time dream of a brother and sister writing team. The story was an idea that the siblings thought of during their younger years, 40 years ago, and have nurtured til the time came when both of them had time and space in their lives to write the story.
The siblings have a love of the era of history that this book takes place in, and have spent time in the area of Turkey where the story is set.
The book itself is a romantic story of history and good versus evil. The court of Suleyman the Magnificent at Topkapi Palace in Instanbul, was a like many palaces in history, a place where jockeying for power and a greedy desire for control led to intrigue. In this book, Suleyman brings in Il Lupo The Wolf, a count with a nose for trouble who has helped investigate plots in other courts of Europe, to help quell the plots in his court and stop assassination attempts. He is joined by his wiley, sword wielding daughter Francesca, who he has raised on his own, and who wears a disguise. She finds herself drawn to Kemal, Suleyman’s bodyguard, whose brawny exterior hides a warm sensitive interior. Can they work together to stop the many intrigues at the palace court, from thefts of sacred relics to assassination attempts on Suleyman and his favorite concubine? Can they stop the evil Jinn that lurks in the secret passageways under the palace, and find out who is controlling it?
The book has some beautiful chapter openers, illustrated in the style of illuminated manuscripts and calligraphy which evoke the time and place of the sixteenth century palace, which was one of the things that drew me to the book. It’s illustrations are quite beautiful.
The book itself suffers from some of the problems of a lot of self published novels. It’s a little over written, there’s a lot going on, and some passages feel like they belong in a guide book or text book on the era. But that said, if this is an place or an era of history that you’re interested in, the book has an attention to detail that can only come from authors who are passionate about their subject.
Read It If: you like the history of Istanbul and Suleyman, or stories of court intrigue and romance.
This book was sent to me for honest review by the authors. All opinions are my own. If you’d like get a copy of this book, it’s available in paperback, hardcover or e-book (some e-book versions do not have the illustrations), available at Amazon UK HERE or Amazon US HERE.