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The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya (TCM, Volume 1)
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The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya (TCM, Volume 1)

4.60  ·  Rating details ·  147 ratings  ·  43 reviews
A two-volume Eisner-nominated graphic novel about a 17th century carpet merchant from Istanbul, and his reconcilitation with faith, love and home in the aftermath of his death by a vampire.

A magic realist, historical epic with a modern, satirical take on Gothic fiction and the literary vampire genre.

A Fragment of a Turkish Tale
In the late 17th century of the Ottom
ebook, 336 pages
Published 2016
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Average rating 4.60  · 
Rating details
 ·  147 ratings  ·  43 reviews

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Tamsien West (Babbling Books)
Almost 2 years ago I funded this graphic novel via Unbound - a crowdfunding platform for books. I followed the author on Twitter and had enjoyed seeing behind the scenes as the story was created and evolved. Though I was aware it was available as a web comic, once I decided to fund the physical book I held off reading it until I could hold the physical copy in my hands.

I'm so glad I waited, the book is beautiful. Bringing an extra layer to the richly imagined story. The illustrations are lush an
If you had asked me a month ago what my favorite webcomic was, I probably would have said "Darths & Droids." But that was before I discovered the storytelling genius of Reimena Yee and "The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya." Don't get me wrong, D&D is great, but it has never affected me like TCM. This is a story that has made me laugh, made me "aww," made me cry a veritable bucket of tears, and has stayed in my mind ever since I finished reading it. It's a story of love, faith, heartbreak, comp ...more
i absolutely adored this.
Jan 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Beautiful art and story, with very endearing characters. I really enjoyed this depiction of life in the Ottoman Empire -- the clothes, the architecture, the textile patterns, the human diversity and the layer of Islam was very interesting and immersive. Will definitely look into the next book! The single thing that could perhaps be improved was the print quality for the darker scenes, it was sometimes very difficult to make out what was going on so I had to look up the corresponding pages in the ...more
I was able to read it for free from the author's website. Absolutely gorgeous. ...more
Nov 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A tender, beautifully crafted work. Holding this book in your hands feels like holding an important text—a guidebook for how to love and how to live through suffering and doubt. Quiet and powerful.
Apr 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
Ashley Post
Nov 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya, as a whole, is an incredible tale of love, loss and a journey of self-discovery. Reimena Yee has created an immersive story that had me, on several occasions, tearing up and laughing aloud, and feeling such an overwhelming love for the characters and their lives. Zeynel and Ayşe, and the hardships that they had to face throughout the story, are written so well that it's difficult not to care! It's inspiring and beautifully illustrated, and I highly recommen ...more
Fatima Qaissi
Nov 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I fell in love with one of the earlier panels and decided to get the book. I was impressed by how dense and beautiful the book was!! Such gorgeous and heartfelt story, I had to continue reading the second volume & now I look forward to get its physical copy too. Totally recommend!
Nov 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is truly an immersive experience. The panels are lush with details and motifs from Ottoman art and beyond. What is best about this book, is of course the story. It’s more than a story about just a vampire. The book is about growing up, faith, love and, at it’s core, personal humanity that we cultivate through the small ordinary events in our lives.
Nov 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
I backed this on a whim ages ago and spent the next few months prevaricating between forgetting all about it and regretting the impulse (#BrokeStudentLife) but oh dear god, when it finally arrived, it was beautiful. An absolutely stunning hardback, filled with gorgeous and unique art and a vibrant, compelling story. This is a book overflowing with love, and it even made me cry a little. Highly recommended.
Can Richards
Sep 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Carpet Merchant of Konstantiniyya is a beautiful tale about love and death by vampirism, refreshingly moving the beats of traditional vampire Gothic literature away from its usual Westernised setting. Reimena Yee weaves exquisite tapestries of panel layouts in this book, taking inspiration from the Persian carpets the characters sell, and pushes the boundaries of comics as a storytelling medium, with pacing and beats that immersed me into the emotions of the characters, and made me cry and l ...more
Saran Walker
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have been following Yee's work for years and read this book while it was being released as a webcomic. It's a deeply moving story about family, faith, and love, beautifully rendered in Yee's distinct style and integrated with Turkish and Islamic art-inspired details. My hard copy came in the mail today and I couldn't be more excited to read it again! ...more
Aug 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those stories that genuinely makes you feel like there's still hope for humanity, it's heartbreaking and sweet at the same time. Beautiful storytelling melds with incredible artwork and it makes this one of the best stories I've ever read. I don't usually get this sappy, and I almost NEVER cry after reading a book (well, webcomic in this case but still) but this one did it for me. ...more
Aug 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
Adding this in goodreads to remind myself to read the second volume. Gorgeous and intricate art, strong woman character, and supernatural setting in 17th century Istanbul. And carpets. Sometimes they have vampires too.

Link to the webcomic available in book synopsis.
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I stumbled upon this story when it was a still a webcomic, then donated to their Unbound campaign, and now I’m finally holding his beautiful book in my hands.

This book is gorgeous-both in terms of illustration, story, and characters. It is about Zeynel and Ayse a married couple who worked together to make their dreams of owning a successful carpet business in Istanbul come true. When Zeynel is bitten by a vampire, they must figure out how to keep their dreams and love alive without endangering
Mar 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I've been sitting on this review for a few days because I wanted to gush about my favorite parts but I also don't want to spoil things for new readers. What I love the most about this story is how easy it was to find myself absorbed in the story and the characters.

Zeynal was so relatable to me, especially his empathy, his anxiety, his love for other people's stories, his faith, and how easily tears came to him (I had to hold back tears multiple times reading this GN). I love, love, loved how Z
Holy shit this might be one of the best comics I've ever read???
The art is so stylized and beautiful - like a carpet come to life with all of its vibrant, ever-changing colours, strong shape-language and strong design! The way Reimena Yee uses panel layouts and just does visual storytelling in general is fantastic - so much information and emotion is crammed into such elegant and simple panel transitions that it honestly left me breathless. The slight changes in style during important moments f
Hui Qing
Mar 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Impossibly fantastic, ambitious on multiple layers. And succeeding on all! Characters, themes, culture and art, all carefully balanced to produce this beautiful story. It's quiet and nuanced and clearly made with a lot of sincerity. It's thick but a quick read because there are beautifully laid out pages where the story is just allowed to breathe and the emotions allowed to sink in.

If you're looking for an action packed fantasy adventure this isn't the book for you. But if you're looking for cha
Daneah Husswan
Apr 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Oh. My heart is breaking. I’ve been meaning to read this story for months, and finally today I had the chance to and by golly. It’s a heart wrenching tale of a tale. There is a literal ache in my chest, the feeling of grief and loss... I don’t think I know the right words to say. But I DO know that This will not be the end of my journey with Zeynel!
Rebecca K
Jul 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
I thought this was a really good graphic novel. The art is beautiful and I enjoyed the story, I even got teary at the end! I just wanted a little bit more! Don’t get me wrong, this is a good graphic novel and I would recommend it, i just wanted more and for some things to move a bit slower. But overall, a beautiful really worthwhile read
L.C. Laurent
Feb 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I can't fathom how something can be this beautiful and perfect and heartwarming and heartbreaking all at once. What an amazing experience, I eagerly await the second one that is currently being crowdfunded. ...more
Ellis Van Manen
May 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
What a cool story! It is a fairytale-ish story on true love that combines elements of Islam, turkey, vampires and the orient. It sounds like an odd combination, but it is done well in this good looking graphic novel!
Kate Alyssa
Dec 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely beautiful and detailed story. I recently got my physical volume 1 book through Unbound. Can’t wait to be able to hold volume 2 in my hands as well.
Jan 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Really loved the style and story of this comic.
Fatima Alsuwaidi
Jan 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Everyone needs this in their lives.
Beautiful, Beautiful, Beautiful.
Christen Warkoczewski
Feb 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful illustrations, beautiful characters and interactions. I care so much about the main characters! Plus, the setting is a nice change from commonly Eurocentric vampire stories.
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I'm not crying, you're crying. Beautiful. ...more
Becca Harper-Day
Mar 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Such a beautiful graphic novel! It's absolutely gorgeous to look at, and the story itself is so lovely and rich and sad. I cried! ...more
Mar 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics
This was GORGEOUS and SWEET and DEVASTATING. Adored it so much!
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