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In Turkey I Am Beautiful

3.25  ·  Rating Details ·  64 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
From back a portrait of a country and a people on the edge, posing eternal questions about friendship, identity and how many carpets one man can possibly need.
Paperback , 356 pages
Published June 1st 2008 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published 2008)
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Jenny (Reading Envy)
(I received a copy of this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This is a reprint of a book originally published in 2008, with a new preface and dedication added by the author.)

Brendan Shanahan, prior to the time he spends in Turkey to write this book, had made a previous visit where he befriended brothers running a rug shop. In many ways, this makes In Turkey I Am Beautiful more than just a typical tourist/journalist travel account. He spends a lot of time in Istanbul, even puts som
Amanda Caldwell
In Turkey I Am Beautiful is the travel memoir of Brenda Shanahan about his year spent traveling Turkey, including the obscure and often scary eastern region and living in Istanbul while working at a carpet shop. His views of Turkey and the adventures he had while traveling there are humorous, often times reminding me of memoirist David Sedaris. Like Sedaris, Shanahan can be equally crude and offensive. Many times throughout the book he actually makes himself seem ignorant and heartless, making ...more
Jamie Gough
Dec 15, 2013 Jamie Gough rated it really liked it
Brendan writes of his travels from Istanbul into the “wild” East of Turkey. He visits cities that many tourists avoid because for the most part, it isn’t worth the risk to visit them. Luckily, Brendan hops on the (many) buses for us, and records all the crazy things he sees and does: from getting propositioned by some unlikely Turks, to walking boldly across the barrier between Turkey and Armenia (having been told that hidden soldiers will shoot at him if he does so). And, to our gain, he ...more
Gabriella Gricius
Jan 17, 2014 Gabriella Gricius rated it really liked it
Why Read: It was another pick from NetGalley, my new favorite website, and as I can’t stop (and won’t stop) reading travel books – it was almost inevitable that I was to read it! Although it took me a fair bit of time to get around to it, I’m so glad I waited and read the novel.

Review: In Turkey I Am Beautiful is one of those travelogues that makes you hesitate to travel to the mysterious eastern Turkey. Although Brendan spends quite a lot of his time in Istanbul, I felt like a majority of the b
Stephanie F.
Sep 17, 2013 Stephanie F. rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
This book is a bit tedious to read. Brendan goes into a lot of detail on his surroundings and experiences. I did like the book, though. More than perhaps the actual book about Brendan Shananhan's journey in turkey, I love love love his style of writing.

The witty sarcasm is refreshing. I like how it doesn't seem like he is trying to be politically correct or deny any traces of being seen as potentially ethnocentric. He calls it as he sees/experiences it.

Brendan's trip into Eastern Turkey was po
Elizabeth Grieve
May 13, 2014 Elizabeth Grieve rated it it was ok
As a native Brit who lived in Turkey for 10 years (and now teaching Turkish), I'm endlessly fascinated by this amazing country. I found the author to be rather self-absorbed,and although I realise that it's a personal narrative, would have preferred to read a bit less about the dubious characters he was involved with and more about the general culture. However it was reasonably interesting.

Reviewed in exchange for a preview Kindle copy.
Jun 29, 2008 Kerry rated it it was ok
I had such high hopes for this book. Unfortunately it failed to live up to my expectations. This book is a cross between a boring history lesson and a boring account of one man's journey across Turkey. I imagine the only real reason the publishers picked it up is that it covers the authors journey into the east of the country - not exactly highlights on most westerners travel itinery.
Jan 07, 2016 Teresa rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014, non-fiction
"He describes his travels with great humor, a crude buffoon with a good heart type of humor and thus will entertain you as he trods on many people's toes.'
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Jan 03, 2013 June rated it really liked it
A very readable account of one man's journey in this wonderful country. Historically interesting, full of colourful characters, and well-written, it is thought-provoking and, occasionally, depressing, but mostly full of fun and humour. Well worth a read . . .
Nov 29, 2010 Andy rated it it was ok
As much as I like Turkey, this book didn't work. I liked some of the travel bits, but the carpet bits in Istanbul were BORING.
Irena Valdor
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Mar 06, 2013
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Apr 05, 2013 Rebecca rated it really liked it
I loved this book and the people Brendan met during his stay.
Dale Nixon
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