Güneli Gün: On the Road to Baghdad

The latest addition to my website is Güneli Gün‘s On the Road to Baghdad. This is an excellent picaresque novel using magic realism and clearly influenced by the One Thousand and One Nights. Our heroine, Hürü, born in late 15th century Constantinople, is the daughter of a former Karaman prince. When he and his wife set off for Mecca, Hürü is left behind in the care of the local imam. When he tries to seduce her and fails he complains to her parents. Her half brother returns to Constantinople and then takes his half sister to Konya, where he ties her to a tree. The rest of the story involves her adventures both in time and place. She travels back to ninth century Baghdad, travels forward to modern New York, meets Scheherazade, whose version of the One Thousand and One Nights story is somewhat different from the one we know and, often disguised as a man, runs around the Middle East in a series of picaresque adventures. It is all a very cleverly done, very funny and highly original. Well worth reading.

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