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Last Train to Istanbul
This topic is about Last Train to Istanbul
May 2018: Family Drama > Last Train to Instanbul - Ayse Kulin - 3 stars

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Jason Oliver | 2105 comments In the beginning of the book, Selva, a Muslim, wishes to marry Rafo, a Jew. Both families abandon their children or marrying outside their faith. Selva's sister feels guilty as she, or her own interests, pushed Selva and Rafo together, yet she is in an unhappy marriage.

Selva and Rafo move to France, then WWII breaks out. The story focuses on the political maneuvering of Turkey as they are being pulled by the Allies and the Axis powers and Turkey's willingness to help all their citizens and even Jews who weren't Turkish citizens, flee to Turkey, as well as Selva and Rafo struggle in occupied France.

It has been pointed out that it may be due to a bad translation, but I felt the writing was horrible and due to this, the story lacked emotion and I struggled to get excited about the story.

I rated 3 because of the things I learned about Turkey, their tolerance for all people not just during WII but even centuries before.

message 2: by Amy (new)

Amy | 9377 comments Too bad. It sounds like the premise had promised. But that ultimately what happened with it fell flat.

Booknblues | 6891 comments Amy wrote: "Too bad. It sounds like the premise had promised. But that ultimately what happened with it fell flat."

I felt more emotional connection than Jason, but agree that the translation was not great. My understanding is that she is a well known and admired Turkish author.

As Jason said, I appreciated the work which the Turkish diplomats did to protect their people.

message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

I think I'm going to give this one a try anyway. I've read some wonderful things about this author and have to wonder if this is a translation issue. I've read some books in French and Hebrew, only to read them again in English and was disappointed by the translation. I know with Hebrew often there really isn't a word in English that is the same. I just love the Middle East so much and I'm drawn to books with that history.

Jason Oliver | 2105 comments Yeah thr writing just seemed elementary.

Jason Oliver | 2105 comments Could have been translation.

Booknblues | 6891 comments One caveat for Amy, the scenes with the Freudian therapist might seem a little off. I would love your take on this Amy.

The relationship between the sisters is a bit melodramatic and I wish some of the secondary characters played bigger roles because they were the ones involved in the real drama.

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