The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk (Translated by Maureen Freely) - review by Sarah A Smith

Sarah A Smith

Love Recollected

The Museum of Innocence

By

Faber & Faber 535pp £18.99 order from our bookshop
 

With a body of work that spans European postmodernism, the historical thriller and an analysis of political Islam, it is difficult to think of a living writer with more literary ambition than Turkey’s Nobel laureate Orhan Pamuk. At first sight then, The Museum of Innocence is a surprise: a tragic love story that looks, in the most straightforward terms, at ‘the question of what it means to be a man or a woman in our part of the world’. 

The man is the narrator Kemal, the spoilt younger son of a rich businessman, who finds himself with enough time on his hands to enjoy not just the pleasures of his fiancée Sibel but an illicit romance with an impoverished distant relation, Füsun. The love, and more particularly

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