Yashim is no ordinary detective. It's not that he's particularly brave. Or that he cooks so well, or reads French novels. Not even that his best friend is the Ambassador from Poland, whose country has vanished from the map. Yashim is a eunuch. As the Sultan plans a series of radical reforms to his empire, a concubine is strangled in the palace harem. And a young cadet is found butchered in the streets of Istanbul. Delving deep into the city's crooked alleyways, and deeper still into its tumultuous past, Yashim discovers that some people will go to any lengths to preserve the traditions of the Ottoman Empire. Brilliantly evoking Istanbul in the 1830s, "The Janissary Tree" is a fast-paced literary thriller with a spectacular cast, from mystic orders and lissom archivists to soup-makers and a seductive ambassador's wife. Darker than any of these is the mysterious figure who controls the Sultan's harem.
Jason Goodwin writes the best-selling Yashim detective series set in 1830s Istanbul. The fifth in the series, The Baklava Club, is out in June.
'When you read a historical mystery by Jason Goodwin,' writes Marylin Stasio in The New York Times Book Review, 'you take a magic carpet ride to the most exotic place on earth.'
The Janissary Tree won the EdgarAllen Poe Award for Best Novel in 2007, and the series has appeared in over 40 languages.Â
He's written award-winning books of travel and history, including Lords of the Horizons: A History of the Ottoman Empire. Time Out called it 'perhaps the most readable history ever written on anything.'
Jason's love-affair with Turkey was kindled in 1990 when he and Kate, his partner, walked 2000 miles across eastern Europe, from Gdansk to Istanbul. The award-winning 'On Foot to the Golden Horn' tells the story of that journey in a year of change, and it's available on Kindle.
Also on Kindle, The Gunpowder Gardens: Travels through India and China in Search of Tea tells the story of Jason's journey across the world of tea, its trade and history.
He lives in Dorset, on the south coast of England, with Kate and their four children.