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The Istanbul Puzzle Paperback – January 19, 2012
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"Keep Calm" by Mike Binder
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•'This stylish conspiracy thriller is a Turkish delight…combines plenty of stirring action with fascinating historical detail about a city and a country [Laurence] quite obviously loves.' Irish Independent
• 'A brisk plot…which draws the reader into a conspiratorial rapport…He's come late to fiction, clearly he means to enjoy it.' Telegraph
A brutal murder. An ancient temple. A long-lost treasure.
More About the Author
* Top selling Irish mystery author,
* Translated into 11 languages,
* #1 in the Amazon charts, in two categories.
The Istanbul Puzzle is the first in this series of mystery-thrillers. Laurence visited Istanbul 6 times to research it. The Jerusalem Puzzle continues the story and features the same characters. The third in the series, The Manhattan Puzzle, arrived October, 2013 in the UK and October, 2014 in the U.S..
Laurence's roots go back to a small estate deep in the Mountains of Mourne, near the Silent Valley, in County Down, Northern Ireland.
In 2007 he won the Outstanding Novel Submitted award at the Southern California writer's conference.
His research has taken him all over the world, from San Francisco to deep in the Muslim world.
Top Customer Reviews
I won't go over the plot, which you can read in the book description, but I will tell you that this book does what a thriller is supposed to do--keep the reader on edge with every turn of the page.
The Istanbul Puzzle weaves elements together in a plot that is very believable in the current political/religious climate. What makes this book even more enjoyable is Laurence O'Bryan's knowledge of Istanbul, which is obvious in his descriptive passages of the city. O'Bryan evokes all the senses, and makes the reader feel as if he/she is right there. I like to learn something when reading a novel--even a thriller--and this book did not disappoint. I feel as if I've visited the city and the beautiful Hagia Sophia, the museum that had "once been the Islamic world's St. Peter's."
I'm eagerly anticipating O'Bryan's next novel in the series titled, The Jerusalem Puzzle. He also has a website where he posts puzzles related to the book. What fun!
I wont summarize in too much detail but here are some brief storylines. The book splits time (not evenly) between Turkey and Great Britain and primarily follows a character named Sean Ryan. Sean runs a company that is studying mosaics at the Hagia Sophia in Instanbul when his partner and friend is savagely murdered. Of course, in the same vain as many great heroic characters before him, Sean heads off to Turkey to try to discover what happened to his friend. He is welcomed there by a group of unknown enemies that would clearly like him dead and from there, the story spirals off into a wonderful action adventure thriller...think The DaVinci Code, only more believable.
The thing that makes this book such a great book is that Mr. O'Bryan has really taken the time to fill in his characters. Sean Ryan isn't some schmuck that, for no reason, goes running into harms way in Instanbul. Sean is someone that has suffered terrible loss and is still, in many ways, grieving. In some respects, I think that Mr. O'Bryan wanted to create the impression that his primary character had nothing to lose in living and, as such, was willing to do things that most of would never consider.Read more ›
As Sean delves deeper into what his co-worker was working on inside the ancient temple of Hagia Sophia, he is joined on his quest by British diplomat, Isabel Sharp, who suspects something more sinister is afoot. The quest leads them around this atmospheric and busy city, into the depths of the ancient temple itself and even find themselves underground in old World War II bunkers that predate the event by centuries. It's classic adventure with a modern vibe and a lethal virus thrown in to spice things up even more.
What stands out, pretty much from the off, is how much detail the author goes into when describing the old city of Istanbul. It's extremely atmospheric and full of character, which adds ounces of realism into a genre that often likes to mix factual history with fictional treasures. And what also impresses, is how not only does O'Bryan go into visual detail, he adds smells and sounds to his descriptions too, which not only adds to the credibility, but also gives us readers a fully three dimensional world - we almost don't need to visit the city ourselves.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
"The Istanbul Puzzle (A Brutal Murder, An Ancient Temple, A Long Lost Treasure)" is a work that separates the men from the boys in more ways than one. Read morePublished 20 days ago by Valerie Ann Bruce
The Istanbul Puzzle is a fast-paced and exciting adrenaline fueled adventure that takes you from London to the streets and tunnels of Istanbul. Read morePublished 22 days ago by Deb McEwan (Multi-genre author)
I read many different genres, and depending on my mood, I read for different reasons—sometimes for comforting relaxation, sometimes to learn and sometimes to enjoy a gripping... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Gloria Antypowich
I had the opportunity of meeting the well know Irish writer in a conference in Florida. He was a speaker in the conference and a very popular attraction. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Jose A. Peris
A fast read on "international intrigue" through a the mysterious ancient city. Good concept though but story wasn't executed as well as I hoped.Published 5 months ago by A Long Time Fan
If you love James Rollins, Dan Brown, and Steve Barry, you have to read Laurence O'Bryan. The book is filled with intrigue and suspense that pulls you through the book. Read morePublished 6 months ago by TCMac
This was so not my normal genre of book but couldn't put it down. Captured the intrigue of Istanbul and took me back to my visits there. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Catherine DeVrye