The Janissary Tree by Jason Goodwin
A Novel

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Synopsis

Be on the lookout for Investigator Yashim's next adventure, AN EVIL EYE, on sale March 29th!

When Jason Goodwin explored the Ottoman Empire in Lords of the Horizons, The New York Times Book Review hailed it as "a work of dazzling beauty…the rare coming together of historical scholarship…with luminous writing." Now he returns to Istanbul, with a delicious mystery--The Janissary Tree.

It is 1836. Europe is modernizing, and the Ottoman Empire must follow suit. But just before the Sultan announces sweeping changes, a wave of murders threatens the fragile balance of power in his court. Who is behind them? Only one intelligence agent can be trusted to find out: Yashim Lastname, a man both brilliant and near-invisible in this world. You see, Yashim is a eunuch.

He leads us into the palace's luxurious seraglios and Istanbul's teeming streets, and leans on the wisdom of a dyspeptic Polish ambassador, a transsexual dancer, and a Creole-born queen mother. And he introduces us to the Janissaries. For 400 years, they were the empire's elite soldiers, but they grew too powerful, and ten years ago, the Sultan had them crushed. Are the Janissaries staging a brutal comeback?

The Janissary Tree is the first in a series featuring the most enchanting detective since Precious Ramotswe of The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency. Splendidly paced and illuminating, it belongs beside Caleb Carr's The Alienist and the historical thrillers of Arturo Perez-Reverte.

 

About Jason Goodwin

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Jason Goodwin's previous books include Lords of the Horizons: A History of the Ottoman Empire and On Foot to the Golden Horn. He lives in Sussex, England, is married with four children, speaks French and German and once walked from Poland to Istanbul.
 
Published April 1, 2010 by Sarah Crichton Books. 320 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Business & Economics, Horror, Action & Adventure. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Janissary Tree

Kirkus Reviews

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Goodwin, an acclaimed travel writer and popular historian, now takes on a mystery, with mixed results.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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Goodwin, the author of a well-received history of the Ottoman Empire, Lords of the Horizons (1999), makes a welcome shift to fiction with this impressive first o

Feb 06 2006 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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Goodwin, the author of a well-received history of the Ottoman Empire, Lords of the Horizons (1999), makes a welcome shift to fiction with this impressive first of a new mystery series set in the empire's declining decades.

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BC Books

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I go a lot of places when I find myself holding a mystery novel. I see Raymond Burr looking serious...A murder mystery set in 19th century Istanbul is more than Sherlock Holmes in a turban.

Aug 03 2009 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

BC Books

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Investigator Yashim is everything you could want from a classic detective.

Aug 03 2009 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

BC Books

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Aug 03 2009 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

BC Books

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This is Istanbul under the faltering Ottoman empire - the janissaries have been suppressed and the sultan is truly in control - or at least as much in control as any one man at the centre of an intrigue-ridden palace, in a fading empire - which has just lost the Crimea to the Russian, can be.

Jun 29 2008 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

The Bookbag

Can he use his knowledge of the historical city, his guile, his unique position on the edge of society, and threads of an ancient poem left for no real reason by the baddies on the titular tree, and avert the threat to the city?.

Dec 07 2014 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

Curled Up

Once the Ottoman Empire's crack troops, the Janissaries have now degenerated - or evolved – into an armed mafia, terrorizing the sultans, fire razing, thieving and exhorting with impunity.

Jul 10 2015 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

http://www.greenmanreview.com

I can understand that Goodwin might want to make use of this status to enable Yashim to enter freely into the harem, a place he appears to know quite intimately.

Jan 01 2015 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

Tip Of The Iceberg

Sounds like great combination or a great story.

Mar 15 2010 | Read Full Review of The Janissary Tree: A Novel

Reader Rating for The Janissary Tree
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