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This is not a history of a hotel, but King very cleverly uses the hotel as a lens through which to study the changes in Istanbul over the first half of the 20th century.
King presents a very thorough analysis, covering the social, political, economic, ethnic, religious and even architectural changes over the period, as well as what has survived all the changes. He neatly places these changes and continuities within the wider contexts of the old Ottoman Empire, Turkey, Europe and Asia. The book is wonderfully researched and written in an easily accessible and convincing narrative.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
There IS a kernel of an interesting subject here but the writing jumps around, making the whole book confusing. Grover Gardner is a great asset but not good enough to save this account. Here, again, Audible would benefit listeners by providing us with PDF downloads of accompanying photographs if available in the print version. With a rare account of a magnificent city like Instanbul, I'm sure the author gave the reader a visual glimpse of this colorful locale, along with vintage prints of Constantinople and its transition into Instanbul.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful
I was searching for a book that would follow on from The Ghost Empire by Richard Fidler . This book was the perfect choice. The author deals with tbe dismantling of the Ottoman Empire The rise of Mustafa Kamal later to be known as Ataturk who dragged Turkey into modernity, Many other interestinb historical facts are dealt with such as Turkeys neutrality during WW2 Turkeys stance on the jewish people who were trying to es ape Nazi persecution, Many human i terest stories are interwoven throughout the main facts, I found this to be a very interesting read,