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The Towers of Trebizond by Rose Macaulay
  

The Towers of Trebizond

Literary Fiction   Historical Fiction   
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July 2011 Guest Editor Alexander McCall Smith on The Towers of Trebizond

This is a humorous classic that is largely ignored today but which is still as amusing as it was when it was first published. It has a classic first line, never since equalled.

Synopsis

The Towers of Trebizond by Rose Macaulay

This story describes the experiences of a group of people on a trip to Turkey. Aunt Dot is set on the emancipation of Turkish women through the encouragement of a wider use of the bathing hat, whilst Laurie's only object is pleasure.

Reviews

'Pure fiction - yet travel writing at its very best, exploring the ties between our physical surroundings and our spiritual state. I was hooked from the very first line: 'Take my camel, dear,
said my Aunt Dot, as she climbed down from this animal on her return from High Mass. In this loose story of an attempt to establish an Anglican mission in Turkey, Macaulay proves that to be true to and revealing about a place, you don't have to write fact. There are moments of huge sadness and great hilarity.' Review by Dea Birkett (Kirkus UK)

About the Author

Rose Macaulay was born into an intellectual family in 1881 in Rugby. When she was six, the family moved to a small coastal village in Italy, where her father made a living as a translator of classical works and editor of textbooks. There, she developed a sense of adventure that was to be a dominant feature of her life.

Macaulay returned to Britain to be educated at Oxford, and after graduating went to London to write. She soon became one of the most popular novelists of her day and a key figure in the 1920s literary scene – swimming with Rupert Brooke, attending the farewell party for Isherwood and Auden on the eve of their departure for the Spanish Civil War, trying to teach E.M. Forster to use crutches, celebrating Christmas with Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson at Sissinghurst.

Macaulay's literary output was prolific and diverse; she was the author of some thirty-nine books, mainly novels and comedies, but also poetry, essays on literature, religion and travel writing, including the excellent 'The Pleasure of Ruins', a book combining travel, archaeology and autobiography. Among her many celebrated novels of the 1920s and 1930s are Told By An Idiot, Crewe Train, The World My Wilderness and They Were Defeated. Her career culminated in her masterpiece, The Towers of Trebizond, which she referred to as 'my own story'. Here she managed to bring together innumerable threads of her talent, producing a novel at once funny and sad, lighthearted and deeply felt, flippant and profound.

Rose Macaulay never married. She was created Dame Commander of the British Empire in 1958, the year of her death.

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Book Info

Publication date

9th January 1995

Author

Rose Macaulay

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Publisher

Flamingo an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Format

Paperback
288 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
Historical Fiction

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

ISBN

9780006544210

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