I have dreams of traveling to far off places. But lacking a passport and the funds I do my traveling through reading. And this was a nice book to read, although I didn't quite get the vision of Turkey like I had hoped.
Joy Stocke and Angie Brenner meet when they agree to
help a friend with a pension (bed & breakfast) she has bought in
Turkey. Arriving though, they find the place in deplorable shape and
their help no where to be found. After trying to make it work they
decide to move on, but by this time have become friends and decide to do
their travels around Turkey together. Meeting the local people and
seeing some of the historical sites, they come back year after year, to
look at different places in Turkey and meet up with old friends (and
I really enjoyed the people that Stocke and Brenner
encountered in this book. It's told from their perspectives (and the
start of each chapter lets you know who's narrating) and through them we
get to become seduced by Turkish men, filled with the warmth of Turkish
women's hospitality and all the other emotions that people can evoke in
each other. Sure they come across a couple of sleazy people, but there
is good and bad in every country in the world. And the two narrators
are nice people so they seem to make friends easily. Although I do kind
of wonder whatever happens to their mutual friend Wendy from the
beginning. Not a lot of explanation is given about her silence in
regards to the pension. I do have to say the people were nothing like I
had expected. They all seemed to be pretty carefree and hospitable.
Either the ladies had good luck in meeting people or they left the
majority of the nasty ones out of this book.
I think the first
half of the book is the best. There's a lot more description and a lot
more of them interacting with the people they meet in the book. The
second half combines a lot of trips and they're always on the move and
it just feels a little rushed. I do have to say that all of the book
had great descriptions of food. It was all I could do not to go look at
flights to Turkey just so I could go over and gorge myself on the
delicious dishes mentioned in the book. Ok, actually I did look, but
just out of curiosity. They were just that good at describing the food.
On the scenery though, I had more trouble picturing that in my head.
Maybe it's because I picture Turkey as more of a desert country, like
Iraq, but I just wasn't getting the images the ladies were trying to
This book made me want to visit Turkey. Sure it
wouldn't have taken much for me to want to go, but I think they did a
good job of explaining why this book is sub-titled "a love affair".
They definitely were able to write and convince me that they loved
Anatolian Days & Nights