Nicholas (nwhyte) wrote,
Nicholas
nwhyte

November Books 10) The Dervish House, by Ian McDonald

It's 2027 and Turkey has joined the European Union. In an old tekke in Istanbul, six people find their lives intertwined around a plot involving nanotechnology, the Nabucco gas pipeline, and the arcane secrets of the mellified man. There is a lovely echo between microcalligraphy and encoding information on junk DNA. It's Ian McDonald's best disciplined novel so far, I think, with all the lush description and present tense intensity that we are used to, but somehow coming together rather beautifully. Nic Clarke has a longer review of it here; I'll just note that as far as I can tell (based on my work in a Turkish speaking area outside Turkey over the last few years) Ian seems to have really got the measure of Turkish orthography and culture. A brilliant book.
Tags: bookblog 2010, bsfa 2010, hugos 2011, sf: bsfa award, writer: ian mcdonald
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