Today it’s my turn to host the BlogTour for An Oriental Murder by Jane Bastin. It is a story that mixes a 1920s feeling of nostalgia with modern day crime.
Jane is a storyteller, writer, traveller and educator. Having lived and worked for over thirty years in Turkey, Jane has amassed a breadth of experiences that have led to the writing of the Sinan Kaya series of novels. Of course all characters and events are fictitious!
Fluent in both English and Turkish, Jane writes in both languages and has had a range of articles published in Turkish periodicals and magazines alongside British newspapers.
Jane now divides her time between rainy Devon and sunny Turkey,
Follow @JaneJanebastin @crookedcatbooks on Twitter
About the book
The Pera Palas hotel in Istanbul, Turkey plays host to the Agatha Christie Writers’ Congress when real life imitates fiction. The bodies of the Prime Minister and his occasional mistress are found dead in one of the hotel’s locked rooms surrounded by bodyguards. Seemingly, no one could get in or out, and yet…
Inspector Sinan Kaya is convinced that foreign agents are culpable, and that the murders are linked to the recent spate of killings of Turkish government officials.
Within this complicated, crime riddled city, Sinan Kaya’s moral compass never falters. Not concerned with threats of dismissal from the force, he cuts his own path through the investigation, determined to uncover the truth.
An Oriental Murder is a tale of espionage and murder set against the backdrop of beautiful Istanbul, the ancient city where east and west meet.
Aside from the fact quite a few people get killed in this book, this is a great idea for a murder mystery holiday. Just Saying.
Bastin gives the reader the image and feeling of what Istanbul used to be like in the era of Agatha Christie. The old city imagery combined with the ever encroaching oppressive laws and thinking of the new regime.
With that in mind it is easy to understand the conflict Sinan faces, both morally and professionally. He has to make a choice. He can either adhere to the rules and become part of the corruption or he can try and sidetrack them, whilst doing the right thing.
This story of political corruption is skewed by a locked room mystery and the connection of some of the victims to a seedier side of sexual activity. Sinan has to determine just what exactly is really at the root of all the red herrings and distractions in his investigation.
Bea and her mother are the flies in the soup in this scenario, as far as I am concerned. They’re brash, loud and would probably fit quite nicely into one of Christie’s character stereotypes. The complete opposite of Sinan, which is why his connection with Bea is kind of like nails on a chalk board.
Given more direction and elimination of superfluous details, this has the potential to be charming little book and/or series. The character of Sinan has a certain element of charm to it, which mixed with the old mystique of Istanbul, and the aura of a grande dame of mystery, crime and murder herself, draws the reader in. It’s something just below the surface, almost indiscernible, but it’s there and I hope Bastin can draw upon it for future novels.
Buy An Oriental Murder at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.
Publisher: Crooked Cat Books