Today is my stop on The Silence of Scheherazade blog tour.
Thank you Jade, Head of Zeus for inviting me on this tour
At the heart of the Ottoman Empire, in the ancient city of Smyrna, a devastating moment determines the fates of four families.
On an orange-tinted evening in September 1905, Scheherazade is born to an opium-dazed mother in the ancient city of Smyrna. At the very same moment, a dashing Indian spy arrives in the harbour with a secret mission from the British Empire. He sails in to golden-hued spires and minarets, scents of fig and sycamore, and the cries of street hawkers selling their wares. When he leaves, seventeen years later, it will be to the heavy smell of kerosene and smoke as the city, and its people, are engulfed in flames.
But let us not rush, for much will happen between then and now. Birth, death, romance and grief are all to come as these peaceful, cosmopolitan streets are used as bargaining chips in the wake of the First World War.
Told through the intertwining fates of a Levantine, a Greek, a Turkish and an Armenian family, this unforgettable novel reveals a city, and a culture, now lost to time.
The Silence in Scheherazade tells the story of four different families living in the ancient city of Smyrna in the wake of the First World War, beginning in the year 1905. It’s been a while since I’ve read such an in depth and complex book with such a plethora of characters, names and places to remember and I certainly had to keep my wits about me. This is no lightweight novel, you need to take your time reading it to digest and absorb all the information being relayed and it can be a little confusing with the multiple points of view and different situations. That being said, it is beautifully written, culturally rich and it has a gorgeous poetic writing style. The book has its own unique atmosphere which is evident from the very first page. At times it can be a little disturbing and are some horrendous historical events depicted, but likewise there is some beautiful and vivid imagery conjuring up the amazing sights, aromas and feelings of the setting.
This is an wonderful historical novel with some realistic accounts of daily life. An insightful read, which is well researched and must have taken an age for the author to compile and write. It was particularly interesting learning about the different culture and customs. Both beautiful and tragic The Silence of Scheherazade is an epic book and a must read for all lovers of historical fiction.
Publisher: Head of Zeus
Publication Date (UK): 19 August 2021
Page Count: 512
Genre: Historical Fiction/Family Sagas
About the Author:
Defne Suman was born in Istanbul and grew up on Prinkipo Island. She gained a Masters in sociology from the Bosphorus University and then worked as a teacher in Thailand and Laos, where she studied Far Eastern philosophy and mystic disciplines. She later continued her studies in Oregon, USA and now lives in Athens with her husband. The Silence of Scheherazade was first published in Turkey and Greece in 2016 and is her English language debut.
Thank you to the publisher for the gifted advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
Please do not hesitate to comment below if you liked my review or have any comments about this book 😊