A completely new author and very distinctive style of writing. I think I picked up this book since I read somewhere that it was one of the greatest books of last century. I think from the point of literature, it truly is a remarkable book. “My name is Red” is also immensely readable for the most parts but in the end I rushed through the detailed descriptions and long winding climax. The last part of the book is very intelligently thought by the author Orhan Pamuk.
The book is a story of miniaturists in 16th century Istanbul one of whom is murdered in the beginning of the story. The story goes on for nine days where one more murder takes place and then many characters are trying to find the murderer. The investigation of murder is a study in the history of miniature paintings throughout the history since other miniaturists are trying to find the signature style of the murderer through many paintings. The story is also a rich source of information about lifestyle, society, politics and family life of that time. You are transported to 1591 in Istanbul. There are also some interesting references of Mughal King Akbar in the story.
Most important part of the book is the narrative style. The story is narrated from point of view of different characters in different point of time. The story does not go back and forth in time but effortlessly move with the narration of each character. Sometimes, the author have used very different type of narrators like a dead man, color red, dog and coin. It was amazing to read the story from perspective of color red and coin. Author has also tried to describe the experience of dead men and what happens after death to soul and body.
The murderer narrates his part of story with two faces, sometimes as murderer and sometimes disguised as fellow miniaturist and readers are provoked to figure out who amongst them is the murderer. Overall, a great book though it could have been shorter in length.