The Towers of Trebizond
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The Towers of Trebizond

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by Rose Macaulay
     
 

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Hailed as "an utter delight, the most brilliant witty and charming book I have read since I can't remember when" by The New York Times when it was originally published in 1956, Rose Macaulay's The Towers of Trebizond tells the gleefully absurd story of Aunt Dot, Father Chantry-Pigg, Aunt Dot's deranged camel, and our narrator, Laurie, who are

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Overview

Hailed as "an utter delight, the most brilliant witty and charming book I have read since I can't remember when" by The New York Times when it was originally published in 1956, Rose Macaulay's The Towers of Trebizond tells the gleefully absurd story of Aunt Dot, Father Chantry-Pigg, Aunt Dot's deranged camel, and our narrator, Laurie, who are traveling from Istanbul to legendary Trebizond on a convoluted mission. Along the way they will encounter spies, a Greek sorcerer, a precocious ape, and Billy Graham with a busload of evangelists. Part travelogue, part comedy, it is also a meditation on love, faith, doubt, and the difficulties, moral and intellectual, of being a Christian in the modern world.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Macaulay’s meticulous, understated storytelling traces the hairline crack between laughter and tears, finds grand universals in ordinary foibles, and speaks, without blush or wink, of sin and repentance."—Paste Magazine

"A small miracle of a novel."—Salon

"It is an extraordinary novel, being not just a witty and lyrically written account of the journey of a heart and soul, but also, a beguiling history lesson, a masterclass in acute social observation, and a remarkable polemic on female emancipation and religious sectarianism."—The Independent

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780374533632
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date:
10/30/2012
Series:
FSG Classics Series
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
539,353
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)

Meet the Author

Dame Rose Macaulay, one of the most popular writers and personalities in England from the 1920s until her death in 1958, was a friend to the likes of E. M. Forster and Virginia Woolf. She was the author of more than thirty-five books; Towers of Trebizond is her masterpiece.

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The Towers of Trebizond 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
al-in-chgo More than 1 year ago
THE TOWERS OF TREBIZOND is a thoroughgoingly entertaining and at times charming account of a travel writer's pixillated trip through the Mediterranean with a camel and her dotty aunt Dotty, a gung-ho Anglican (Episcopalian here in USA). A picaresque with little in the way of compelling plot, but propelled geneally by Aunt Dot's interaction with locals and other travelers, this is a highly charming, character-driven book reminiscent in its many surprises of Ackerley's HINDOO HOLIDAY re his misadventures in India. Really, this is the kind of thing one either loves or leaves cold. Especially recommended for Anglicans, Episcopalians, and Anglophiles in general. If you liked HINDOO HOLIDAY or TRAVELS WITH MY AUNT you will probably like THE TOWERS OF TREBIZOND too.
lesslie More than 1 year ago
After reading reviews by folks who gave 5 stars and nearly gushed with enthusiasm over The Towers I was prepared to be overwhelmed. Alas, dear reader, I was underwhelmed. (I wrote, in my How Green Was My Valley review, that I feared I would never be so impressed with any other book ever again---see, it's already happening.) The begginning of the book did, however, overwhelm me with the ceaseless and excruciatingly detailed lesson on the Anglican church. Then the old Auntie and annoying priest disappear halfway along (thank god) and left me alone with the young woman and the camel (my favorite character in the book.) This is where I should have begun the book for it was delightful. Nice prose, nice landscape depiction and ancient history references. She has a bit of a lovely adventure overthere and eventually returns to jolly old England where, again, the editor abandoned the book. For some reason the woman goes on and on for pages about the Anglican church again and, even worse, wastes several trees worth of pages trying to train a monkey to drive, attend church and garden. Stupid nonsense that should have ended up on the editor's floor. I skipped it without losing anything. What happend next made me irritable and I wanted a pair of gloves with which to smack the editor. What was she thinking? The book's tone had been extremely lighthearted up to then, downright silly at times. Then all the sudden, she springs an outtright tragedy wrapped up with a red (red, the color of the Scarlet Letter) bow. It was out of place and felt like 2 differently minded people argued about how the book would be written and then settled on sharing the work but not bothering about smooth transitions between the two's vastly different styles. In summary, it was a nice book, but should have had (seriously yall) half of it edited away. I put the book down frowning and annoyed. As the kids say, It harshed my dream mellow.