by Ece Temelkuran, translated by Zeynep Beler - £12.99 Zed Books Ltd (2016)
paperback ISBN 13: 9781783608898 | ISBN 10: 1783608897
Starting with the basic question "what is this place?", award-winning journalist and novelist Ece Temelkuran guides us through her "beloved country". In challenging the authoritarian AKP government – for which she lost her job as a journalist – Temelkuran draws strength and wisdom from people, places and artistic expression.
The result is a beautifully rendered account of the struggles, hopes and tragedies which make Turkey what it is today. Lamenting the commercialisation and authoritarianism which increasingly characterises Turkish society, Temelkuran sees hope in the Gezi Park protests of 2013, the electoral breakthrough of the progressive HDP party in 2015 and in the simple kindness of ordinary people.
Much more than either straightforward history or memoir, Turkey: the Insane the Melancholy is like sitting with a friendly stranger who, over raki or coffee, reveals the secrets of this rich and complex country – the historic "bridge" between east and west.
(Price & availability last checked: September 2016)