So far, the start of spring has been a nipple-hardening affair. Wild March winds are whistling across the East Anglian flatlands and snow flurries swirl around the daffodils. Thank God for central heating and high tog duvets. March has also been remarkable for a flurry of activity for Perking the Pansies, Jack and Liam move to Turkey. The middle of the month saw a spike in sales sending it to the top of the Amazon charts. I know not why. Then, quite by chance, Twitter of all things alerted me to a review of the book in the Turkish Daily News. The out-of-the-blue piece was written by Hugh Pope, an eminent writer and journalist. Hugh lives in Istanbul and has assembled an impressive CV – The Wall Street Journal, The Independent, Reuters, and United Press International as well as three critically acclaimed books under his belt – Dining with Al-Qaeda, Sons of the Conquerors and Turkey Unveiled. These days, Hugh is Project Director (Turkey/Cyprus) for the International Crisis Group. This is serious stuff for a serious writer who knows a thing or two about Turkey and the wider region. He’s a busy man and I’m not sure how a little-known book by an unknown author caught his attention but I’m grateful that it did. Hugh gets the book in a way some others don’t. It might be a gossipy tale written in comic carry-on style and tied up with a pink ribbon, but there is a more thoughtful message in there too. Thank you, Hugh, for seeing it.
You can read Hugh Pope’s review here.