The Yashim stories have fabulous fans in Italy, where they are published by Einaudi: I think it’s down to striking covers and the excellent translations by Cristiana Mennella, while my dear Italian friend Anna insists that it because the word giannizzeri, as in L’Albero dei Giannizzeri, sounds mysteriously sexy!
For centuries, of course, the states of Italy and the Ottoman Empire were very closely involved with one another, through trade and war. In The Baklava Club – published as I Cospiratori del Baklava this month – the relationship takes on an unusual twist, with the fate of three young Italian revolutionaries in exile in Istanbul…
Here’s the delicious new cover:
It shows a detail from John Frederick Lewis’s Life in the Harem, Cairo, painted in 1854. I’ve written about him on the blog before, here.
So a happy New Year to all my Italian readers, and buon appetito!