Deadline Istanbul: Peggy Hanson
A murder of a fellow journalist sets off a chain of events that would make anyone wonder why a reporter would want to live and work in Turkey. Elizabeth Darcy is sent to replace Peter Franklin as a journalist for the Trib in Istanbul office due to his untimely death. Deemed a suicide, yet not believing he would take his own life, Elizabeth embarks on a quest to learn the truth. But, sometimes things do not always take the turn you want and before all is finally revealed, many lives will be lost, secrets revealed and a cast of characters that will make you wonder just who can be trusted and who is working hard to meet that special deadline.
As Darcy faces many obstacles including being followed, her room ransacked, someone trying to break into her room, attacked, she manages to form some strange alliances. Meeting a man at the hotel named Le Reau and wondering just who he is and how he managed to save her from an attacker, a police detective that always seems to be Johnny on the spot when needed and a friend whose body washed up on the Bosphorus. But, Darcy senses murder and now with the help of her assistant, she begins to uncover evidence that might lead to his killer but hopefully before someone gets to her first. Istanbul seems like a beautiful city but in reality the murders are many, the dangers mount up as we meet another reporter, Haldun and his cat Sultana, who is attacked along with Elizabeth letting you know that they are getting too close to something but what? Jean Le Reau is her hotel neighbor pretending to be French. A friendly and debonair U.S. Consulate official named Lawrence Andover, an archeologist and sister to a young fanatic member of the Silver Wolves that is killer, her name Leila Metin, Ahmet Aslan a handsome and rich Kurdish ceramics producer and business owner all blend together but how? Added in a missing journalist that was working with Elizabeth and the intrigue and the mystery thickens and the end result has yet to be revealed. Let’s not forget the strange man who seems to be following her and the fact that danger is in her path every step of the way but she won’t be deterred. But, where is Faye Mollington and who might have kidnapped her and why? There are many different players within this complex novel as Darcy makes her way to archeological digs, a tour of Aslen’s business, the museums, the tunnels and the inner many cities within Turkey to find a killer or killers.
The smell of the food as the author describes the meals; the parties and the dinners make your mouth water. But religious conflicts and political problems that plagued the country back in 1996 when this story takes place seem no different than what you hear on the news today. The interesting part is the many quotations at the start of each chapter that lend themselves to the events that are about to take place. Like the prelude to a Chopin’s waltz or a short prologue for each chapter enticing readers to guess and surmise where these quotes fit and how they help the reader understand what comes next.
With Faye’s disappearance and the involvement of the DEA, Darcy raises many questions that she hopes will get answered by Mehmet Bey and the Detective Inspector working on finding her. The link that would solder all of the murders together and Faye’s disappearance leads to antiquities from Turkey that have been stolen. Antiquities are the second most lucrative smuggled time after drubs. So, who killer and bombed Professor Fener’s House and why? Who is behind it all? Add in the trouble between the Kurds and the Turkish army, and guilt just might point to an unlikely source. As the plot unfolds and a killer is taken out who ordered the young Silver Wolf killed, why and what made him a viable target? Erol Metin is the brother of Letia Metin who is big in the field of antiquities. Suspects mount up as Darcy starts to wonder what her friend was really up to and working on. His papers and file in a safety deposit box at the hotel did not stop someone from ransacking her room. Just why was she a prime target and who was following her every step of the way? Leila is an enigma and woman of mystery. Perihan Kiraz worked the dig with Professor Fener where does she fit in? As Darcy and Haldun compile their individual lists of suspects each one discounting some, including others and at times both adding the same name to their lists. Aytem Fener the daughter of the professor is she guilty? Is her unhappiness real? Erol Metin was killed but could he have been a double agent? What about her assistant Bayram? Is he too eager to step in and help? Why are things happening? What about Sultana the cat? What is the cat trying to convey to Haldun? One phone call would send Darcy on a mission that would endanger her life and reveal a dangerous killer and plot. An ending that you won’t expect and a serious twist that will surprise readers as the explosive conclusion will reveal more than just who will meet that Deadline in Istanbul! Author Peggy Hanson takes readers inside the dig, the streets of Turkey and Istanbul. Told by Darcy herself so that readers understand her rationale and thinking as the events unfold. Deadline Istanbul: allows Darcy to travel and investigate the death of her friend and allows readers to enter the palaces of sultans, smell the delicious aromas of the food and food stands and travel along with Darcy as she races the clock before more lives are lost.
Fran Lewis: Reviewer
This book gets Four Stars