Diane's Reviews > The Winter Thief

The Winter Thief by Jenny White
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's review
Jan 22, 12

This mystery/political thriller is set in the late 19th century Ottoman Empire. The authorities intercept a shipment of illegal weapons bound for an Armenian settlement near the border with Russia. Then, a terrorist attack occurs against the Imperial Bank in Istanbul. While Kamil Pasha, a detective and the main character of the story, investigates, the head of the secret police sets his own plans in motion to resolve the situation. I appreciated the historical atmosphere (likely enhanced by the author's position as an anthropologist on the region), compelling characters, and fast-paced plot. The author did a good job of weaving real life events into a fictional plot. While I think in some places she was overly sympathetic to the Ottoman authorities, the story contains a nuanced portrait of the late empire and its peoples.

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