The Sultan's Harem by Colin Falconer

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Synopsis

From the author of the critically acclaimed When We Were Gods comes a dramatic, unforgettable novel of cruelty and passion set in the great Harem of the Ottoman empire.

In Constantinople there is only one ruler: Sultan Suleyman the Magni?cent, Lord of Lords of this World, Possessor of Men’s Necks, Allah’s Deputy, absolute ruler of the mighty Ottoman Empire. And at the heart of his palace is the Sultan’s vast Harem, the domain of hundreds of scented, pampered women—some wives, some concubines, some merely slaves. Among them is Gulbehar, the Sultan’s submissive favorite and mother of his heir; Julia, the daughter of an Italian lord, kidnapped when she attempted to flee Venice with her lover; and Hürrem, a Tartar girl from the Russian steppes, sold into slavery.

All three women are beautiful, but Hürrem is the most dangerous—ruthless in her desire to rule the Harem and, ultimately, Suleyman himself. Endlessly manipulative and clever, she carefully arranges the downfall of her rivals and endears herself to the Sultan, which places her at the center of the Empire’s power. It is his obsession with Hürrem—not his enemies—that costs Suleyman his allies, his sons, and ?nally his dynasty.

Bestselling author Colin Falconer offers an irresistible glimpse into a world of intrigue, sensuality, and violence, where an empire can be controlled not by the might of its ruler, but by the women hidden behind the Harem walls.
 

About Colin Falconer

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COLIN FALCONER is the author of When We Were Gods and Feathered Serpent as well as several other historical novels, which have been published throughout the world. He lives in Perth, Australia.
 
Published July 13, 2004 by Crown. 464 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Okay for anyone who can't get enough of camels-and-couscous epics—but readers who loved the heated sensuality and intrigue of Barbara Chase-Riboud's much more polished Valide or even Bertrice Small's fabulously trashy The Khadin are not likely to be wowed.

Jul 13 2004 | Read Full Review of The Sultan's Harem

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“I love order and repetition too much.” As time goes by, unfortunately for Gülbehar, Süleyman also realizes that he loves the fair Hürrem, a gorgeous Tartar interloper who wants to be his one and only.

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Publishers Weekly

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Lengthy, involved and meandering, this epic soap opera by veteran historical novelist Falconer (Feathered Serpent , etc.) is set in the court of the 16th-century

May 31 2004 | Read Full Review of The Sultan's Harem

Publishers Weekly

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Lengthy, involved and meandering, this epic soap opera by veteran historical novelist Falconer (Feathered Serpent , etc.) is set in the court of the 16th-century Turkish sultan Süleyman and its harem of 300 beautiful women.

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