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Nov. 27, 2023

EP 228: Book Review: Orhan Pamuk’s “My Name is Red”

EP 228: Book Review: Orhan Pamuk’s “My Name is Red”

In this episode, host Fortunus Games reviews one of her favorite books, Orhan Pamuk's "My Name is Red."

Set in 16th century Ottoman Empire, this book is a murder mystery at its core. The first chapter is from the perspective of a court artist who was murdered, and you have to read through the book to discover who murdered him. There’s a dizziying kaleidoscope of perspectives, including the perspective of a dog and who you could call the protagonists of this work, Black (an administrator who has returned to Istanbul after 12 years abroad) and Shekure, a widow who wants to find a new husband and father for her two boys after her soldier husband went missing four years ago.

Besides its beautiful descriptions of artworks and the political and religious consequences of switching from one art style to another, "My Name is Red" is a riveting read due to Pamuk's ekphrastic writing. Ekphrastic writing describes artworks, and Pamuk uses it effectively to explore history, politics, and human psychology.

Listen to this episode to see why I gave this book 4/5 stars.

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