Simon's Reviews > The Turkish Gambit

The Turkish Gambit by Boris Akunin
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Mar 20, 09

Read in March, 2009

This is the third according to the publisher of Boris Akunin's Erast Fandorin Russian detective stories, however I think they must have them out of sequence as he departs on the trip covered in the second novel at the end of this story.

Akunin is quite interesting in that he looks at the narrative in each of these books in a different way, in this case we follow Varvara Suvorova as she journeys to the front line in the Russo-Turkish war of the 1870s to be with her cryptographer boyfriend. On the way she is rescued from the Bashi Bazouks by Fandorin. On arrival it isn't long before she is drawn into investigating a plot to sabotage the Russian War effort when her boyfriend is arrested for sending the message for the Russian forces to occupy the wrong town handing the Turks a victory. So its up to Fandorin and Suvorova to find the spy at the Russian HQ to avert a disaster.

I liked a lot of things about this book, the setting was very interesting and made me want to learn more about what to most of us is a little known footnote in the history of Europe, but one that almost precipitated a World War. The story was intriguing and well structured, but I think the translation has let it down as the language lacks vigour. Its still fun though
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