The Black BookBook - 2006
A New Translation and Afterword by Maureen Freely
Galip is a lawyer living in Istanbul. His wife, the detective novel-loving Ruya, has disappeared. Could she have left him for her ex-husband or Cel#65533;l, a popular newspaper columnist? But Cel#65533;l, too, seems to have vanished. As Galip investigates, he finds himself assuming the enviable Cel#65533;l's identity, wearing his clothes, answering his phone calls, even writing his columns. Galip pursues every conceivable clue, but the nature of the mystery keeps changing, and when he receives a death threat, he begins to fear the worst.
With its cascade of beguiling stories about Istanbul, The Black Book is a brilliantly unconventional mystery, and a provocative meditation on identity. For Turkish literary readers it is the cherished cult novel in which Orhan Pamuk found his original voice, but it has largely been neglected by English-language readers. Now, in Maureen Freely's beautiful new translation, they, too, may encounter all its riches.