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Birds Without Wings

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Paperback published by Vintage (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)

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About This Book
In his first novel since Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernières creates a world, populates it with characters as real as our best friends, and launches it into the maelstrom of twentieth-century history. The setting is a small village in southwestern Anatolia in the waning years of the Ottoman Empire. Everyone there speaks Turkish, though they write it in Greek letters. It’s a place that has room for a professional blasphemer; where a brokenhearted aga finds solace in the arms of a Circassian courtesan who isn’t Circassian at all; where a beautiful Christian girl named Philothei is engaged to a Muslim boy named Ibrahim. But all of this will change when Turkey enters the modern world. Epic in sweep, intoxicating in its sensual detail, Birds Without Wings is an enchantment.
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In his first novel since Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernières creates a world, populates it with characters as real as our best friends, and launches it into the maelstrom of twentieth-century history. The setting is a small village in southwestern Anatolia in the waning years of the Ottoman Empire. Everyone there speaks Turkish, though they write it in Greek letters. It’s a place that has room for a professional blasphemer; where a brokenhearted aga finds solace in the arms of a Circassian courtesan who isn’t Circassian at all; where a beautiful Christian girl named Philothei is engaged to a Muslim boy named Ibrahim. But all of this will change when Turkey enters the modern world. Epic in sweep, intoxicating in its sensual detail, Birds Without Wings is an enchantment.
Product Details
Paperback (576 pages)
Published: June 28, 2005
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Imprint: Vintage
ISBN: 9781400079322
Other books byLouis de Bernieres
  • A Partisan's Daughter

    A Partisan's Daughter
    England, late 1970s. Forty-something Chris is trapped in a loveless, sexless marriage. Roza, in her twenties, the daughter of one of Tito’s partisans, has only recently moved to London from Yugoslavia. One evening, Chris mistakes her for a prostitute and propositions her. Instead of being offended, she gets into his car. Over the next months Roza tells Chris stories of her past. She’s a fast-talking, wily Scheherazade, saving her own life as she retells it–and Chris is rapt. This deeply moving novel of their unlikely love is also a brilliantly subtle commentary on the seductive power of storytelling.

    Captain Corelli's Mandolin

    Captain Corelli's Mandolin
    Extravagant, inventive, emotionally sweeping, Captain Corelli's Mandolin is the story of a timeless place that one day wakes up to find itself in the jaws of history. The place is the Greek island of Cephallonia, where gods once dabbled in the affairs of men and the local saint periodically rises from his sarcophagus to cure the mad. Then the tide of World War II rolls onto the island's shores in the form of the conquering Italian army. Caught in the occupation are Pelagia, a willful, beautiful young woman, and the two suitors vying for her love: Mandras, a gentle fisherman turned ruthless guerilla, and the charming, mandolin-playing Captain Corelli, a reluctant officer of the Italian garrison on the island. Rich with loyalties and betrayals, and set against a landscape where the factual blends seamlessly with the fantastic, Captain Corelli's Mandolin is a passionate novel as rich in ideas as it is genuinely moving.

    Red Dog

    Red Dog
    In 1998, Louis de Bernieres—acclaimed author of Corelli’s Mandolin—came upon a bronze statue in a town on Australia’s northwestern coast and was immediately compelled to know more about “Red Dog.” He did not have to go far: everyone for hundreds of miles in every direction seemed to have a story about Red Dog. He was a Red Cloud Kelpie, a breed of sheepdog known for its energy and cleverness. But Red Dog was a kind of ultra-Kelpie, energetic and clever enough for an entire breed in himself. Dubbed a “professional traveler” rather than a stray, Red Dog established his own transportation system, hitchhiking between far-flung towns and female dogs in cars whose engine noises he’d memorized and whose drivers he’d charmed. The call of the wild was matched by the call of the supper dish; Red Dog’s appetite was as legendary as his exploits. Everyone wanted to adopt him (one group of workers made him a member of their union), but Red Dog would be adopted by—or, more precisely, he would adopt—only one man: a bus driver whose love life quickly began to suffer and who never quite recovered from Red Dog’s relentlessly affectionate presence. Independent, clever, sly, stubborn, courageous and foolhardy, impatient with boredom and the boring, Red Dog endeared himself to (almost) everyone who crossed his path. These funny, surprising, and touching stories of his life are certain to endear him to every reader.

    The Red Dog

    The Red Dog
    Red Dog is a West Australian, a lovable friendly red kelpie who found widespread fame as a result of his habit of travelling all over Western Australia, hitching rides over thousands of miles, settling in places for months at a time and adopting new families before heading off again to the next destination and another family – sometimes returning to say hello years later.While visiting Australia, Louis de Bernières heard the legend of Red Dog and decided to do some research on this extraordinary story. After travelling to Western Australia and meeting countless people who’d known and loved Red Dog, Louis decided to spread Red Dog’s fame a little further. The result is an utterly charming tale of an amazing dog with places to go and people to see. ‘Life enhancing.’ — Literary Review

Favorite QuotesFROM THIS BOOK
  • The people who remained in this place have often asked themselves why it was that the Ibrahim went mad.

    — submitted by Flag This Quote For Review
  • De mensen die in deze plaats zijn blijven wonen, hebben zich vaak afgevraagd waarom Ibrahim gek is geworden.

    — submitted by Flag This Quote For Review
  • Because we have no wings we are pushed into struggles and abominations that we did not seek, and then, after all that, the years go by, the mountains are levelled, the valleys rise, the...

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