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Lagraziana's Kalliopeion

This is a blog about my reads as well as everything related to them.

My taste is for good quality literature - old and new. Some of it I review here or on my main book blog Edith's Miscellany.



Der Bonbonpalast: Roman

Der Bonbonpalast - Elif Shafak, Eric Czotscher

The story of The Flea Palace is set in an apartment building from the 1960s in the centre of Istanbul, the so called Bonbon Palace. The name is a tribute to the woman – Agrippina Fjodorowna Antipowa, a Russian aristocrat who emigrated to Turkey after the revolution – that the once impressing, always unique and now shabby old house had been built for after she had regained the view of colours thanks to a box of candies, each one wrapped into paper of a colour linked to its taste. The building is home to many very peculiar characters. There are Musa, Meryem, and their son Muhammet in flat #1, Sidar and his St. Bernard Gaba in flat #2, the identical twins Cemal and Celal and their hair dresser’s salon in flat #3, the FireNaturedSons in flat #4, Hadj Hadj, his son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren in flat #5, Metin Chetinceviz and his Russian wife Nadia in flat #6, the narrating "Me“ in flat #7, the Blue Mistress in flat #8, Hygiene Tijen and Su in flat #9, and Madam Auntie in flat #10. The novel tells the stories of the house, of the neighbourhood where there had been two cemeteries which gain unexpected importance in the course of the novel, of life in modern Istanbul and of the tenants‘ everyday lives. The red thread of the novel and at the same time the connecting element is the seemingly ineradicable stench of rubbish everywhere in the house that attracts all sorts of vermin. Only at the end of the book the tenants and the readers find out what is wrong… and it’s quite an amazing revelation.


For more see the review on my blog: http://edith-lagraziana.blogspot.com/2013/01/the-flea-palace-by-elif-shafak.html?spref=fb