This is one of the most beautiful books I've read in a long time. I read just before my recent trip to Istanbul, finished on my flight over there, then my husband read it while we were traveling. We both loved it. I found some of the war info a little too graphic, but in general it's a really beautiful story. Makes me want to read the rest of De Bernieres' novels!
I just finished Birds Without Wings by Louis De Bernieres, one of the best novels I have read in years. The novel follows the impact of the breakup of the Ottoman Empire on the population of a small village in what becomes modern day Turkey in early 1900's. For centuries a ethnically and religiously diverse group of neighbors have lived together in cooperation, tolerance, and peace. The characters are well drawn, the many plots skillfully interwoven, and the prose is beautiful. One sees the the tragic human results when "the mad light of moral (religious) certainty" and the terrible passions of ethnic superiority and nationalism combine to get people to do horrible things that they would otherwise be ashamed of doing. His insights on human nature, his descriptions of love and war, pride and guilt, atrocity and acts of moral courage had me underlining passages, something I rarely do in a novel. I will add it to my list of my top ten novels and highly recommend it.
another fabulously written book by the author of corelli's mandolin. he is an amazing writer!