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Belshazzar's Daughter ❮Read❯ ➭ Belshazzar's Daughter Author Barbara Nadel – Thomashillier.co.uk Tourist brochures present Istanbul as a glamorous, modern city, but the brochures don t make much mention of Balat, a decrepit neighborhood of narrow, twisting alleys and crumbling tenements Until rec Tourist brochures present Istanbul as a glamorous, modern city, but the brochures don t make much mention of Balat, a decrepit neighborhood of narrow, twisting alleys and crumbling tenements Until recently it was home to Leonid Meyer, a reclusive elderly Jew who, like many of his neighbors, came here long ago to escape one of Europe s various bloodbaths But Meyer s refuge ultimately became his coffin, the carnage crowned with a gigantic swastika A racist murder Inspector Ikmen has his doubts, and begins tracking down the few people who might have known the old man, including a faded prostitute, a shadowy family of Russian emigres, a dispairing rabbi, and a high strung young Englishman in the throes of erotic obsession The first in a stunningly atmospheric new series from a writer who has deservedly been compared with Michael Dibdin and Donna Leon.

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  • Paperback
  • 448 pages
  • Belshazzar's Daughter
  • Barbara Nadel
  • English
  • 16 October 2019
  • 1933397497

About the Author: Barbara Nadel

Barbara Nadel is an English crime writer Many of her books are set in Turkey Born in the East End of London, Barbara Nadel trained as an actress before becoming a writer Now writing full time, she has previously worked as a public relations officer for the National Schizophrenia Fellowship s Good Companion Service and as a mental health advocate for the mentally disordered in a psychiatric hospital She has also worked with sexually abused teenagers and taught psychology in schools and colleges, and is currently the patron of a charity that cares for those in emotional and mental distress She has been a regular visitor to Turkey forthan twenty five years.



10 thoughts on “Belshazzar's Daughter

  1. Beth Beth says:

    Okay, folks, I am a former librarian I read books, I lend books, I donate books to the local library, I keep books, etc Not many people feel about books as I do That said, now I must confess I threw this book in the garbage after reading it I knew at that moment that I would not, could not suggest it to anyone I know, and neither would I wish it on anyone at the local library When someone throws Czar Nicholas and his family into the story, late in the story, with the old fairy tale of a sur Okay, folks, I am a former librarian I read books, I lend books, I donate books to the local library, I keep books, etc Not many people feel about books as I do That said, now I must confess I threw this book in the garbage after reading it I knew at that moment that I would not, could not suggest it to anyone I know, and neither would I wish it on anyone at the local library When someone throws Czar Nicholas and his family into the story, late in the story, with the old fairy tale of a surviving daughter ending up in Turkey 80 years later I know it s fiction but I can t stomach it I guess it s a 0 star book in the end Good riddance

  2. Jeffrey Keeten Jeffrey Keeten says:

    I was pleasantly surprised by this book I was afraid it would be a bit of a cozy Nadel does not shy away from descriptions of graphic violence and gratuitous sex, a much grittier book than expected If you are looking for a book that will get you excited about vacationing in Turkey this would not be the best choice Nadel explores the seedier side of Istanbul and introduces the world to yet another great detective Inspector Cetin Ikmen The Inspector dabbles in mysticism, drinks too much, has I was pleasantly surprised by this book I was afraid it would be a bit of a cozy Nadel does not shy away from descriptions of graphic violence and gratuitous sex, a much grittier book than expected If you are looking for a book that will get you excited about vacationing in Turkey this would not be the best choice Nadel explores the seedier side of Istanbul and introduces the world to yet another great detective Inspector Cetin Ikmen The Inspector dabbles in mysticism, drinks too much, has 8 kids, and a dependent father He approaches each day with a raging hangover and yet still manages to put the pieces of the case together I found this view of Istanbul fascinating and will most assuredly read the next book in the series

  3. Otherwyrld Otherwyrld says:

    Belshazzar s Daughter is the first book in a series featuring inspector Cetin Ikmen of the Istanbul Police force, and the first novel written by Barbara Nadel In this case, Ikmen has to deal with the nasty murder of an old man in what appears to be an anti Semitic crime Things soon become muchcomplicated, as details of a long ago crime muddy the water.First of all, what to like about this story well, the characterizations of Ikmen, his family and his work colleagues are very well drawn Belshazzar s Daughter is the first book in a series featuring inspector Cetin Ikmen of the Istanbul Police force, and the first novel written by Barbara Nadel In this case, Ikmen has to deal with the nasty murder of an old man in what appears to be an anti Semitic crime Things soon become muchcomplicated, as details of a long ago crime muddy the water.First of all, what to like about this story well, the characterizations of Ikmen, his family and his work colleagues are very well drawn The Istanbul setting is exotic to most Western readers, but there is enough of a police procedural story here to make it feel familiar enough I have no idea if the depiction of the Turkish Police force is in any way accurate, but given their current less than happy high profile in the news, anything that puts them in a better light is no bad thing Less enjoyable is the plot, which starts out well enough but rapidly become utterly ludicrous and far too complicated for a first novel, particularly the first part of a planned series The author would have been far better off to have started with astraightforward tale for her first story to ease new readers in The ugly nature of the crime is not an issue here, it is the way in which the author depicts some of the antagonists Some reviews have called this book misogynistic I would not go that far, but Nadel does seem to write some very bad things about her female characters, It almost feel like she hates herself rather than her gender The anti Semitic element was also heavy handed at time, and I got pretty fed up of hearing the Jew all the time it felt like the author was saying it sneeringly Again, I have no idea if Turkish people have an issue with Jewish people, but the way the author writes it makes it feel like she is the one with the problem.Finally, the antagonists get together, and the whole sordid saga is spelled out for the benefit of the readers view spoiler and then everybody who heard the story dies in a fire hide spoiler , leaving the police having to guess what really happened rather than tying the story up neatly There is also a massive plot hole at this point view spoiler as it seems that no one remembers how many people were in the building that burned down, including the police hide spoiler This could have been a much better book, and the only thing that kept me reading was a single beautiful passage of just a few pages in the middle of the book In it, Cetin and his heavily pregnant wife have a midnight chat that is just lovely to read Now if only the rest of the book was like this I may read the next book in the series, but the plot better berealistic, otherwise I m done with this series

  4. FicusFan FicusFan says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I heard about the book series on LibraryThing I Enjoy mysteries and having lived in Turkey for 3 years when I was a kid, I had to give it a try.I enjoyed it, but the book does have some big flaws, and at least at the start of the series it does not live up to the banner on the cover The Donna Leon of Istanbul.The book was well written and meaty I really like books that delve into what the characters are thinking, and their past, and why they are acting as they are Nadel does that well, but I heard about the book series on LibraryThing I Enjoy mysteries and having lived in Turkey for 3 years when I was a kid, I had to give it a try.I enjoyed it, but the book does have some big flaws, and at least at the start of the series it does not live up to the banner on the cover The Donna Leon of Istanbul.The book was well written and meaty I really like books that delve into what the characters are thinking, and their past, and why they are acting as they are Nadel does that well, but perhaps goes into too much depth, because the story started to drag in the middle The whole thing could have been tightened up and cut down in terms of page count.There was also a lot of repetitive internal worrying by one of the main characters, Robert, it got boring We seemed to follow him while he did the same things, and had the same thoughts over and over Many of the other characters had a similar problem this one was dominated by his mother, this one was randy, this one was a complaining wife When the character was on stage it was the same theme with just the details changed I didn t feel they were really fleshed out, and they were lacking in shading.The main police character seemed to me to be unrealistic in the sense that he wandered around drinking openly from a bottle of booze He did it in his office, he did it at crime scenes, and he did it when visiting suspects witnesses to question them It isn t the Muslim alcohol alcohol is allowed in Turkey issue that bothers me, as the idea that the police force there has no rules or standards of behavior and that the public actions wouldn t draw unwanted outside attention citizens, religious authorities, press.In general all the characters seemed to be unlikeable and flat They also used British isms in their dialog and thoughts, so I never felt they were actually Turkish so much as reflecting the author s origin The description of the city was so so, with not a lot done to express it as an exotic foreign place other than that it had dark twisty alleys, and sections with unpronounceable names A pronunciation guide would have been helpful overall, I knew some but was not sure of others.The mystery was OK There was a lot of pointless wandering in terms of the police solving it, and the suspects waiting for the other shoe to drop As soon as it was presented that the suspect family was Russian and there was a tie back to the revolution it was clear to me what the mystery was Nadel seems to be of the Alexanda is the root of all evil camp, which does not please me with its inherent sexism, and nationalism The author also pulled a fast one by making a character magically exist when the murder was explained There was a brief foreshadowing of the character s existence, but it was not done properly.The ending has many explanations so the reader knowsthan the police It is explained, but not really wrapped up I was fine with it It seemed to address both schools of ending those who want completion, and those who don t want a pat ending Purists in either camp may be unsatisfied.Over all it was not great, but not terrible Perhaps because it was good, I thought it had the potential to be better than it was I would rate it 2.5 stars, but don t knoiw how to do a half star here, or if they are even available.I am going to read the second one, and possibly the third I usually give a series 3 books to let the author get the kinks out before giving up

  5. Judy Judy says:

    This mystery set in Istanbul has a powerful start, but the plot becomes increasingly far fetched, with a ludicrous final twist There are some over the top sex scenes thrown in and I found some of these offensive, especially those involving the main female character, Natalia This author has a very readable writing style and her detective, Cetin Ikmen, is an interesting character, but it s not enough to save the book I m not quite sure why I read to the end and I won t be going on with the ser This mystery set in Istanbul has a powerful start, but the plot becomes increasingly far fetched, with a ludicrous final twist There are some over the top sex scenes thrown in and I found some of these offensive, especially those involving the main female character, Natalia This author has a very readable writing style and her detective, Cetin Ikmen, is an interesting character, but it s not enough to save the book I m not quite sure why I read to the end and I won t be going on with the series

  6. Heidi Heidi says:

    This story is based in Istanbul, and follows in the footsteps of Inspector Cetin Ikmen and his Sergeant Mehmet Suleyman as they try to solve the mystery of an old Jewish man who has been murdered in a most horrific way The twists and turns include interviewing an old Russian woman who never seems to leave her bed, and a fairly dramatic conclusion.OK, but is the book any good When I was about two thirds of the way through, I would have said No The book starts off well, and brings the reader This story is based in Istanbul, and follows in the footsteps of Inspector Cetin Ikmen and his Sergeant Mehmet Suleyman as they try to solve the mystery of an old Jewish man who has been murdered in a most horrific way The twists and turns include interviewing an old Russian woman who never seems to leave her bed, and a fairly dramatic conclusion.OK, but is the book any good When I was about two thirds of the way through, I would have said No The book starts off well, and brings the reader straight into the intriguing story, but it falls a bit flat in the middle, in the same way as the police seem to be getting nowhere in solving the mystery.Unfortunately, the heavily stereotyped characters are also somewhat unsympathetic, from the misguided Englishman with a slightly dodgy past, via the young Russian girl with an unusual sexual penchant, down to the main police character, who seems to be permanently drunk I know crime fiction policemen, such as Ian Rankin s Rebus, do tend to be haggard, overworked alcoholics, but usually they have some sort of redeeming features Ikmen, on the other hand, did not get my vote, even choosing to ignore the fact that his wife was going into labour admittedly with their ninth child and carrying on working.The novel s main redeeming feature is the plot, which although it drifts along in the middle and contained some holes and implausible aspects, does manage to redeem itself in the end Also the setting in Istanbul and the descriptions of the locations do help to make the whole thingexotic and bring it to life.Which brings me to the rating the book had some redeeming features, and was entertaining and intriguing in places, but I couldn t bring myself to give it a 4 out of 5, because its just not good enough Will I read anyof her books I m undecided at the moment Giving her the benefit of the doubt, this was her first novel so there is certainly the chance that she may have improved

  7. okyrhoe okyrhoe says:

    A disappointing read.Turkey, and Istanbul in particular, has such a rich history that I felt it was a cop out to base the story esp given that it s the first book in the series on foreign characters that is, not the usual Istanbullu residents Instead of Turks, or other ethnic peoples native to the former Ottoman empire, the plot features Russian migr s, British language instructors, former Bolsheviks and Nazis Even the supposedly local Jewish characters names in the novel are not A disappointing read.Turkey, and Istanbul in particular, has such a rich history that I felt it was a cop out to base the story esp given that it s the first book in the series on foreign characters that is, not the usual Istanbullu residents Instead of Turks, or other ethnic peoples native to the former Ottoman empire, the plot features Russian migr s, British language instructors, former Bolsheviks and Nazis Even the supposedly local Jewish characters names in the novel are not quite historically accurate although the author does make note of this discrepancy in the text Another irritating aspect is that the characters tended to use British idioms, or converse in a way different from the way I assume Turks speak amongst themselves Something just didn t sound right during the intimate conversation between Ikmen and his pregnant wife, or the way the Russian family argued amongst themselves And what s this about Ikmen carrying a bottle of booze wherever he goes, even to the police station No, I don t buy that at all Plotwise, the story is very weak, and even though the average murder mystery enthusiast can easily figure it all out early on, there is an extended scene towards the end where everything has to be explained and recapitulated, just in case there are readers who didn t get it But since the suspense has to continue, those privy to the full truth meet an untimely end, just before the authorities can get their hands on the truth and the proof All this transpires in the most unrealistic way right at the plot s conclusion, and it s one authorial cop outthan I am willing to forgive

  8. Olivermagnus Olivermagnus says:

    Belshazzar s Daughter is the first book featuring Inspector Cetin Ikmen, and is set in modern day Istanbul, Turkey Ikmen s wife Is pregnant with their ninth child, his elderly father lives with them, and he s just been called to the scene of a horrific crime An elderly Jewish man has been tortured and murdered and it appears that a bloody swastika has been drawn on the wall with the victim s blood.Ikmen is a strange character in that he works slowly and meticulously, reconstructing each victim Belshazzar s Daughter is the first book featuring Inspector Cetin Ikmen, and is set in modern day Istanbul, Turkey Ikmen s wife Is pregnant with their ninth child, his elderly father lives with them, and he s just been called to the scene of a horrific crime An elderly Jewish man has been tortured and murdered and it appears that a bloody swastika has been drawn on the wall with the victim s blood.Ikmen is a strange character in that he works slowly and meticulously, reconstructing each victim s life in an attempt to understand why the crime was committed This brings him into direct conflict with his superiors who just want the job done quickly.I really enjoyed the multicultural characters that surround Ikmen, especially his second in command, Suleyman, who is incredibly handsome and a devout Muslim Nadel has a real talent for letting her reader s feel and experience the authentic streets of Istanbul in both it s beauty and squalor I didn t love this book, but I m still planning to read the next book in the series I think it has great potential and Ikmen is a character worth spending a littletime with

  9. Baba Baba says:

    Inspector Ikmen Mystery book 1 Inspector Cetin Ikmen story featuring Romanov family conspiracy in a dark and gritty Istanbul Turkey I m thinkingthe setting and darkness earned Nadala a CWA Silver Dagger Award, because it is OK, but not award winningly so 6 out of 12 Inspector Ikmen Mystery book 1 Inspector Cetin Ikmen story featuring Romanov family conspiracy in a dark and gritty Istanbul Turkey I m thinkingthe setting and darkness earned Nadala a CWA Silver Dagger Award, because it is OK, but not award winningly so 6 out of 12

  10. Carlos Santos Carlos Santos says:

    A really interesting who done it with a very surprising ending A truly authentic detective story with a fresh portrayal of all characters especially the brilliant Inspector Ikmen of the Turkish police At every step of the way i felt i was side by side with each character on the streets of Turkey Now I am truly hooked and will be hunting for the next books in the series

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