ISBN is

978-0-375-40697-3 / 9780375406973

Snow

by

Publisher:Alfred A. Knopf

Edition:Hardcover

Language:English

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About the book:

From the acclaimed author of My Name Is Red (a sumptuous thrillerJohn Updike; chockful of sublimity and sinNew York Times Book Review), comes a spellbinding tale of disparate yearningsfor love, art, power, and Godset in a remote Turkish town, where stirrings of political Islamism threaten to unravel the secular order.

Following years of lonely political exile in Western Europe, Ka, a middle-aged poet, returns to Istanbul to attend his mothers funeral. Only partly recognizing this place of his cultured, middle-class youth, he is even more disoriented by news of strange events in the wider country: a wave of suicides among girls forbidden to wear their head scarves at school. An apparent thaw of his writers curiositya frozen sea these many yearsleads him to Kars, a far-off town near the Russian border and the epicenter of the suicides.

No sooner has he arrived, however, than we discover that Kas motivations are not purely journalistic; for in Kars, once a province of Ottoman and then Russian glory, now a cultural gray-zone of poverty and paralysis, there is also Ipek, a radiant friend of Kas youth, lately divorced, whom he has never forgotten. As a snowstorm, the fiercest in memory, descends on the town and seals it off from the modern, westernized world that has always been Kas frame of reference, he finds himself drawn in unexpected directions: not only headlong toward the unknowable Ipek and the desperate hope for loveor at least a wifethat she embodies, but also into the maelstrom of a military coup staged to restrain the local Islamist radicals, and even toward God, whose existence Ka has never before allowed himself to contemplate. In this surreal confluence of emotion and spectacle, Ka begins to tap his dormant creative powers, producing poem after poem in untimely, irresistible bursts of inspiration. But not until the snows have melted and the political violence has run its bloody course will Ka discover the fate of his bid to seize a last chance for happiness.

Blending profound sympathy and mischievous wit, Snow illuminates the contradictions gripping the individual and collective heart in many parts of the Muslim world. But even more, by its narrative brilliance and comprehension of the needs and duties

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