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Book Tips - Orhan Pamuk

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2006 was awarded to Orhan Pamuk "who in the quest for the melancholic soul of his native city has discovered new symbols for the clash and interlacing of cultures".

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Cevdet Bey and his Sons (Cevdet Bey ve Oğulları)

He shows the transition of the society in Turkey from the Ottoman Empire to the contemporary Turkish state and describes the people's everyday activities of that period.
/Apostolos Tsompanis-Notios, Greece

Istanbul: Memories and the City (İstanbul: Hatıralar Ve Şehir)

It is fascinating when one reads a story from halfway round the world in a totally different era which so closely mirrors ones own.
/Olusoga Abayomi, Nigeria
During my trip from Madrid to Bangkok I was reading the book Istanbul by Pamuk and the plane flew just above Istanbul, I felt to request my captain to divert the flight and land in Istanbul for few hours..!! after reading the book I felt that for me it's not necessary to go there now..! I haven't read a book which reflects one biography in such manner, its only Pamuk who can combine a biography with a city, everyone should read this book and try to write something about the place you are born.
/Manoj, Nepal
Cause it makes the city of Istanbul the city of humankind. The best city for feeling melancholically.
/Silvester, Albania
It's well written and makes me want go to Istanbul, the feeling and description ...
/Mariana Pacheco, Mexico
When talking about his youth, the sweet "elegia" for his "lost" town (old Istanbul) comes out softly and incessantly, with a feeling of pure nostalgia. Very poetic book.
/Marcella Missiroli, Italy
History is so lovingly and vividly portrayed through, prose and art. Mr. Pamuk shares so much of himself with the reader ... made me feel as if I were living each moment with him.
/Kaye Diarra, United States
I like the way Pamuk writes because he appeals to the 5 senses, so you do not only see what you read, you also taste the flavors, smell the scents, hear what he describes and you may even feel the way touches what he is talking about.
/Mònica Boustani, Argentina
The memories of Istambul are very beautiful !
/Cassius, Brazil
Because he was able to interweave the destiny of a city with that of an individual. It happens to everyone of us everyday, we live in a city and we are nourished of its atmosphere. The difference is that we don't have a conscience of our deep connection to it.
/Giusy, Italy
The book is a journey through the making of a writer. A historical, social and political account of the city of Istanbul. It is also a fine example of master narrative if one may say so. A real classic from the contemporary master.
/Krishna Kumar G., India
Do you like the Orient? If you do and like it as I love it you'll be amused, overwhelmed with charm, magic and mystery mood of Pamuk's home city and it will become your dream city if you haven't visited Istanbul (Stambul) yet. I've read a lot of Nobel laureates' books (most of them, to be exact). Some are interesting, others - more or less. But this one is quite different. While reading it you'll see everything with the eyes of a child, a boy, a teenager, a young man, an adult. You recollect your own home town and admire everything the author tells you. What a feeling! And then you get a dream - to visit that marvellous city. You become Istanbul sick. And at last you buy a ticket, you needn't any visa to visit that city ... But if have already been to Istanbul you go for walks along its streets with Orhan Pamuk, this wonderful guide and he'll give you a wonderful gift - the city of your dream. I'm proud of 2006 year choice for Nobel Prize - this time it was unmistakable. Congratulations! Haven't you read the book yet? Do, please!
/Ludmilla A. Gurova, Russia

My Name is Red (Benim Adim Kirmizi)

Wonderfully written and a wonderful description of 17th century period in Turkey.
/Mitta, Germany
Poetic writing style, fascinating plot, unexpected ending, one of the greatest book of all times.
/Jean, Malaysia
A new style of writing that relates the cultural history of Turkey.
/Anirban Metya, India
All his novels: original, beautiful written. You are brought back in a unknown world. Characters are strange, but human.
/Lousewies van der, France
The style and eye for detail in writing the historic Turkish mystery. The characterization and authenticity of the period is well depicted too.
/Shamit Bagchi, India
A Complete BOOK.
/Hasan MehDi, Bangladesh
It's so hard to explain!! How can one be so imaginative, and yet, how can one be so realistic at the same time?? How can one take you back centennials as if yesterday's events so delicately and so vividly??!!! It's a masterpiece everyone should/must enjoy it ... In short, is it possible to describe the breathing?? Pamuk did it!!!
/Musa M. Kesebir, United States
I like it for it's thrill and the pattern of this novel.
/Lutful, Bangladesh
It tells the story of a murder from various points of view, including the victim and a chair, and "red".
/Derya, Turkey
With its profound philosophical ruminations, its memorable characters, its gripping tensions and above all, its remarkable humanity, My name is Red held me enthralled for many days. It was my introduction to Orhan Pamuk and I will forever be grateful to him for not only entertaining me with his story, but for also expanding my literary horizons.
/Milt A.P. Moise, Japan
Narration is extraordinary
/Vishnu, India
Great work of art. Orhan has beautifully depicted entire story in a catchy style.
/Humaira Israr, Pakistan
His wrtiting style is very charming. When I read this novel I imagine myself be in another world.
/Ahmed Aziz, Egypt
It is deep novel about life, love, death and of course about Eastern art. I like Pamuk's way of writing. Colorful, joyful ;)
/Rufet, Azerbaijan
This book is not only a literature phenomenon but also a piece of precious art. After you comprehend and enjoy this book you will set a very high bar for yourself to truly respect a writer and/or a novel.
/Erdem Tetik, United States
This is the first book I read from a Nobel laureate. I used to think that Nobel prize authors are not page turners. But this book and this author changed the entire out look about my ideas. And he created a passion in me to read all the Nobel prize laureates books. Thank you very much Mr. Orhan Pamuk.
/Dr T. Ramesh, India
It gives a vivid idea of Istanbul, along with a pinch of suspense.
/Arijit Banerjee, India
It's great literature he wrote ... it depicts crime in a very poetic version.
/Merita, Indonesia
The narrative is unique and it is philosophical.
/Diebalueblume, Philippines
Mr Pamuk's unique story-telling and superbly weaved story line is simply fascinating. And the depth of every character is something you can't find in other novels.
/Sihan, Malaysia
The book is a successful example of postmodern literature. The hero of the book is very interesting.
/Nez, Belgium
It's a great novel! It's a singular philosophical puzzle. Reading the voice of a dead man you can imagine about what we have in that strange place that we call DEATH and from where nobody can return. It's wonderful.
/Rodrigo U. Flores, Bolivia
It is a very interesting and thrilling book.
/Aleksander, Poland
This was the first book of Pamuk I went through. The great thing about Pamuk is his mastery over mystery. Right from the word go he creates thrill and it is unabated down to the last sentence. Apart from thrill you also get to know a lot about Turkey's history. His imagination really transcends all. He is a genius.
/Prateek Srivastava, India
Such a great book, so seamlessly combining genres and motives: crime, murder, art, history. I cannot stop thinking about it. From the first sentence it gives you a notion you are reading something unique. It also has a great structure that elevates the style; idea fragmentation of the novel, as well as the society Pamuk is writing about.
/Nedim K., Bosnia & Herzegovina
I think Pamuk's 'My Name is Red' is a real novel as it illuminates and gives life to the past by the plural voices within the book.
/Héctor Flores, Mexico
It's a remarkable book that consists of cultural background, suspense, philosophy, and a love story. In addition, the way Mr. Pamuk depicts every chapter is really impressive - or you may also say "really outstanding"!
/Han, Jessie, Taiwan

Other colors (Öteki renkler)

It is a very well constructed book and "My father's suitcase" is included in it.
/Hariprasad, India

Snow (Kar)

Reading this book you can take a trip with your guide Orhan Pamuk to the modern Turkish society and join a beatiful excursion to the hearts and minds of Turkish people.
/Alex, Ukraine
This piece of art made my vision enlarge. Description and depictions in the book both unique and pragmatic.
/Osman DÃúZ, Turkey
'Snow' was the first Pamuk book I read, and still my favorite one. I first read it two years ago ... And it was so touching! Like the others of his book, Snow touches the deepest emotions of a lonely soul, and how people react to, and influence, the surroundings with conflict.
/Yiyao Fu, China
The book gave me the deep insight to the realism with which any country lives but general people don't understand even if they are part of the ruin about what plagued their life in one or other way, don't try to understand or get killed when trouble they face by fate or another face.
/Red, Nepal
The language plot and farce of the book make it wonderful. Ka and his poetic ephianies are stunning. I also love books with missing things. I love that you hear about Ka poems but never get to read them, you want to hunt for them but you will never find them but in imagination.
/Ernest Boehm, United States
I am grateful for making us understand your part of our world so much more westernized than I imagined. It's great to know that there is snow over there too and falling every so softly ...
/Arta Denise Lucescu-Boutcher, United States
Amazing narrative.
/Nidhi Gulati, India
It shows a way of life that's hidden from most Westerners.
/Norma Darwin Lane, United States
It is about dreaming of love.
/Susan Luanne Holsinger, United States
One of the most impressive books for me I remember and I will keep in my heart.
/Francesco Ricciardi, Italy
I find this book's character Ka is very close to me.
/Ozturk Ali, Japan
Shows the conflict between light and force muslims.
/Alphie, Mexico
For its structural and lyrical qualities although it falls short of greatness.
/S. Saideep, India
A pitch-perfect example of a political novel.
/Zachary Hardy, United States
It represents the amazing clash between eastern and western civilization which is obviously more tense in Turkey than anywhere else. As an Egyptian Muslim girl, I could very much relate to the issue of the veil of Islam and how it can be used as a means of oppression.
/Dina, Egypt
Because; it is reflecting prisoned ideas in Turkey ...
/Imran Atilmis, Turkey
It emphasized the political aspects of religion, and was realistic and true to human nature.
/Anna, United States
I liked this book so much because this book is symbolising independency in Turkey. This novel is a statue of civil right of beated man and woman in Turkey's cold jail. Maybe you ask me: I can not see what you say about it in this novel. My answer is here: if you feel the deepness of this book and living like me in the south of Turkey; then you can understaned me well.
/Imran Atilmis, Turkey
It is brilliant.
/Deniz, Turkey
The book excellently portays the conflict between a political thought and a man's feelings.
/Chandrakant, India
It is very relevant and timely in terms of its politics and sociology.
/Zophorian, Armenia
As I continued more and more into the book, I thought "This is Nobel Prize material"! Pamuk's understanding of the complexity of Islamic fundamentalism and its impact on Turkish society and his ability to articulate and express it with such warmth is just amazing. He takes a social issue, and puts a human face on it, making an abstract into a personal story.
/Sonja Srinivasan, United States
It opened up a culture to me that I had known so little about before. For me, this is one of the most important aspects of reading the novel.
/Chris, United States
In the novel 'Snow' Pamuk presents Turkey in its rawest form. The strife between the westernised seculars and the radical Islamists, the strife between the various ethnic groups ... these form the backdrop against which the strife in the heart of Ka, the poet is presented. 'Snow' is a political novel but it's also a novel about the conflicting emotions of love, jealousy, betrayal and strife within the spirit of man, so, read this book and revel in the characters created by this brilliant, soulful writer.
/Nisha, Kuwait
It is a great book that shows good understanding of teachings of Islam and the struggle in Turkey. Although I have been to Turkey only for two weeks during the summer of 2004, I can see that this novel is a great description of how Turkey is like nowadays. Well written book that attracts your attention. Be careful, once you start reading it you will be hooked up with it.
/Yousef M. Murad, Qatar
This is a very readable and entertaining, but of course, deep and sometimes melancholic novel. The social and religious conflicts of Turkey provide the scenery to the core of the story: loneliness and how one person can 'incorporate' a dead friend or possibly even choose to live the life the dead one wished to live. Mr. Pamuk's unique sense of humour is excellently demonstrated in this book. I also recommend it to those who liked 'The Castle' by Franz Kafka - in both novels, the snow that locks the main character in a town is clean and silent, just like their loneliness.
/Peter Miskolczi, Hungary

stanbul: Memories and the City (İstanbul: Hatıralar Ve Şehir)

It is beautiful, full of love and a touch of sadness - makes me yearn for my old city, Kolkata. I love the concept of huzun - so real that I can feel it. The way he constructed the book, touch a cord - and I read up all his work.
/Malabi Das, India

The Black Book (Kara Kitap)

Because it is a masterpiece.
/İbrahim Erdem Seçilmiş, Turkey
It is one of the best examples of contemporary literature. The descriptions of the internal world of the protagonist is perfect.
/James Wallace, United States
The most complete book I've ever read.
/Johan Båge, Sweden
I have read many books of Nobel Laureates and I enjoy it. I have read 'The Black Book' of Orhan Pamuk by the time. I want to recommend it. This novel is a very interesting document of human's life in contemporary society. I think in this book we can see the human's problems with original eastern style, snow on Istanbul's streets and quest of life, and pain, and dream, and belief.
/Volodymyr Sheluhin, Ukraine
It's great - a mix of essay writing and novel enables you to actually follow a plot while taking a birds' eye view on things every once in a while. East and West, form and essence are treated with passion matched by intellectual insight. I discovered Istanbul through Orhan Pamuk and I love the city as much as I love the book.
/Sorin, Moldova
His expressions are unique the story and the course of events made me curious about the ending. The complex and detailed depictions are satisfying.
/Ali Can, Turkey
I recommend Orhan Pamuk's 'The Black Book' for highly intelligent persons & talents (not for IQ below 90), who can dream in between words, in between sentences, amongst lines & paragraphs of the book with spectacular philosophy about black days, old days of Istanbul.
/Professor Pranab Kumar, India
It's down to earth and connects with modern film and media in a lucid educational manner!
/S. M .Thompson, United Kingdom
Every sentence of the narrative, even the epighraps, illuminates a dark, undercovered part of the human soul.
/Alev Patlak, Turkey
It's mind-thrilling, story-telling, mysterious and breath-taking! I love the way Pamuk is weaving his stories together with old stories. It's like Russian dolls, you open them, and inside is another doll, and in that doll is another doll etc.
/Alexandra, Sweden
It's simply wonderful ... the world Pamuk creates in this book!! Entrancing, enthralling as well as something that'd make u think!
/Kushal Vidyarthi, India

The Museum of Innocence (Masumiyet Müzesi)

A dramatic insight on human nature in a context of Turkey in the seventies that brings together in a western reader like myself, fascination for the human characters and the exotic and unknown to me background
/Elena Costa, Belgium
The story is fiction but I feel like reading history and culture of Istanbul. It is a blending of fact and fiction. Its language is flawless. He narrates the story back and forth following the movement of the hero. It is an inspiring book. The protagonist is able to build a personal museum and now I have started building my own personal museum.
/Jover Sansano, Philippines
Wonderful story about love, yearning and loss. Reading it was a heart wrenching, soul elevating experience for me.
/Soumen, India
Exactly because its full of true feelings and as author himself says, he put in it all he knew about love... It's the unique masterpiece with original elements (author is mentioning himself in it) and one of rare books with such volume published nowadays and still keeping you addicted reading it. Once you finish it you cannot forget it, even years after and want to read it again.
/Senada Zatagić, Bosnia & Herzegovina
This book made me feel. That is how I assess literature. When I had to close it due to need for sleep or going to work I was afraid of missing what was happening to the characters while I was not able to follow their lives. They were real for me-not fiction. I suffered with them ...
/Katerina, Russia
Romance in great language.
/Ioanna, Greece
A love story which contains paradox, ambitions and poverty.
/Gokhan Turan, Turkey
The novel depicts the 70s Istanbul society very deliberately. And, it narrates realistically how deluded love can render a person, how one might lose oneself and obsess. It might not be the first, or the last time these issues are handled in literature yet Pamuk's depiction is very powerful. Moreover, it winks at literary techniques, such as 'laying bare the device' etc. that catches the attention of the reader and makes him/her more a part of the story. The protagonist with his delusions reminds one of Don Quixote, and Pamuk sort of Cervantes, who was one of the biggest storytellers of all times.
/Gözde Duzer, Sweden

The Naive and the Sentimental Novelist (Saf ve Düşünceli Romancı)

"Writing a novel means painting with words, and reading a novel means visualizing images through someone else's words." This comes from someone who grew up dreaming to become a painter, drawing and sketching every day till he finally decided to use the pencil for depicting with words and let others create those images he had been trying to build up with lines and forms. Read 'Istanbul', Pamuk's memoir to better understand his switch and read this book to clearly see that in fact it was not such a big change, because being a painter and a writer consists after all of similar techniques and strategies when crafting a real piece of art.
/Raluca Batanoiu, Germany

The New Life (Yeni Hayat)

Strange, metaphysical bizarre, like faulkner, proust the beats with loving history unusual and was in turkey and if i hadn't have taken an overnight bus ride on a turkish public transportation bus i probably wouldn't have been able to understand it or read it. then i found out by speaking with other turkish people they don't like him but they like him as a writer.
/Elizabeth Enfield, United States
This book is about how to find a light in the darkness ... It proves that just opening your eyes can be exciting, but at the same time dangerous as well ...
/Dominika, Slovakia

The White Castle (Beyaz kale)

It breaks down the seemingly inherent differences between the East and the West.
/Taylor, United States
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