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The Janissary Tree by Jason Goodwin

The Janissary Tree (2006)

by Jason Goodwin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Inspector Yashim Togalu (1), Yashim Togalu (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,385599,261 (3.47)177
"Jason Goodwin has unleashed his talent on a series of mysteries set in nineteenth-century Istanbul and starring the unlikeliest and most engaging of detectives: Yashim the eunuch." "The Janissary Tree is the first in the series, and the year is 1836. Europe is modernizing, and the sultan of the Ottoman Empire feels he has no choice but to follow suit. But just as he's poised to announce sweeping political change, a wave of murders threatens the fragile balance of power in his court. Who is behind the killings? Deep in the Abode of Felicity, the most forbidden district of Topkapi Palace, the sultan - ruler of the Black Sea and the White, ruler of Rumelia and Mingrelia, lord of Anatolia and Ionia, Romania and Macedonia, Protector of the Holy Cities, steely rider through the realms of bliss - announces, "Send for Yashim."" "Leading us through the palace's luxurious seraglios and Istanbul's teeming streets, Yashim places together the clues. He is not alone. He depends on the wisdom of a dyspeptic Polish ambassador, a transsexual dancer, and the Creole-born queen mother. He manages to find sweet salvation in the arms of another man's wife (this is not your everyday eunuch!). And he introduces us to the Janissaries. For four hundred years, they were the empire's elite soldiers. But they grew too powerful, and ten years earlier the sultan had them crushed. Are the Janissaries staging a brutal comeback? And if they are, how can they be stopped without throwing Istanbul into political chaos?"--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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» See also 177 mentions

English (52)  Italian (3)  Norwegian (2)  French (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (59)
Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
Interesting tale describing the Ottoman Empire, through the story of a free lance eunuch. He is hired to determine the mystery behind the brutal and public deaths of four military men. Long descriptions of the social conditions and living habits of that time. Rather slow moving, but most informative. ( )
  Pmaurer | Apr 29, 2020 |

I'm not completely familiar with Turkey or the Ottoman Empire or books about one of them. But I thought it was an interesting book, I don't know how accurate the book was exactly in the way it described it, but I feel like I've found out several new things. Something I always liked. Set back in the 19th century, it of course it slightly different from the thrillers that are most common, but I really liked this for a change. Still planning on reading the second book as will, but still so many other books to read, so it is possible it will take some more time... ( )
  Floratina | Dec 7, 2019 |
A detective story set in the 1830s Istanbul. I took it because I’m quite interested in the last hundred years of Ottoman empire, their struggle to modernize and ultimate failure and also was interested to pick something new. The text is ok, hardly a literary work but a page-turner nevertheless. Other reviewers noted and there are quite a few possible errors (unless they are intended manipulations like the name of Sufi sect), so if you want a true representation of the mid-19th century Istanbul is probably look elsewhere, but if you just want a piece of escapist reading with some minor history hints, the book is for you. ( )
  Oleksandr_Zholud | Jan 9, 2019 |
Come mascherare una ciofeca sotto un turbante (che, si sa, fa sempre pittoresco). Ahi! Pierre Loti. Tu si che sapevi parlarci di Istanbul. Non ve lo dico ma l'assassino si capisce a pagina 10 ( )
  icaro. | Aug 31, 2017 |
This was a decent historical mystery, but it was lacking in some areas for me. I loved the colorful backdrop that the setting held, but I wish Goodwin would have given more information about the Harem murder. He focused so much on the military murders and running around after Janissaries that he almost forgot to connect the end resolution to the original murder. But, I did like the characters and he gave me a good enough taste of the setting that I'll definitely check out another in the series. ( )
  jguidry | Aug 28, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 52 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (17 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Goodwin, Jasonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rossem, Nina vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For those who have Awareness,

a hint is quite enough.

for the multitudes of heedless

mere knowledge is useless.

-- Haji Bektash Veli
To Kate
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Yashim flicked at a speck of dust on his cuff.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Average: (3.47)
1 8
1.5 2
2 25
2.5 10
3 108
3.5 54
4 120
4.5 9
5 31

Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

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