[Katie Hickman] ↠´ The Aviary Gate [gay-erotica PDF] Ebook Epub Download ✓ Oh I couldn t give this book anything other than a 5 star rating, it has everything I enjoy in a great read An historical romance I ve put the romance in inverted commas because it s not a typical romance with a HEA but rather a romance in the victorian sense of the word Beautifully writen it captured my imagination right from the start I love this time period 16th Century but not from an Elizabethan angle infact I find that period of English history quite boring, no it s the Venetian and Ottoman settings I love I also love anything that includes Astronomy, maths and mathematical instruments, and this story is full of the stuff, plus there s intrigue and mystery I also like stories which have an element of reincarnation or sixth sense So this was ideal for me The Avairy Gate is beautifully written set in the Topkapi Harem, Constantinople and Modern day Oxford and Istantbul it s a lovely story that spans the centuries From the begining I got a real feel for the characters both in the past and the modern day setting The intrigue that takes place within the harem is well put together, some readers may well solve the intrigue but that really isn t the point of the story it s not a murder mystery but rather an insight into the behaviours of the women within the harem and how despite the tranquility and the rules it s really every woman for herself by fair means or foul In the meantime outside the harem walls another story develops and we see both sides of the overall story The modern part of the story pulled me into the centuries past story even futher , I found myself not only piecing the story of the past together but also linking the characters from the past with those of the present day I loved the description of Modern day Istanbul and how the author bought in historical settings to that modern world The author spent alot of time researching for her book and I appriciate all the details she included as they really drew me into both stories I just love this book and I m really looking forward to reading the next instalment.
The characters do not inspire emotional attachment the plot is sufficiently predictable to prevent reader interest, and the writing style is littered with a character s thoughts While not actively bad, The Aviary Gate is boring and instantly forgettable I was disappointed.
The Aviary Gate by Kate Hickman is a lush narrative that reaches back into the sultan s harem of Constantinople, 1599, to relate a bittersweet story of loyalty, love, and loss Elizabeth is a modern day grad student at Oxford, entangled with a rake and researching captivity narratives for a bid at an MPhil She stumbles upon some clues that suggest an Englishwoman named Celia Lamprey survived a shipwreck in the late 1500s only to be sold as a slave into the Ottoman sultan s harem Elizabeth s quest to learn about the fate of Celia and to disentangle herself from her own emotional enslavement to a man who doesn t deserve her takes her from Oxford to Istanbul and while definitive proof can rarely survive four hundred years, sometimes history can reach out and speak to you The Aviary Gate goes back and forth between a few months in Elizabeth s present day story and a few days in Celia s narrative While one might picture luxury and decadence in the harem, Hickman focuses on the lies and secrecy that permeate what is, essentially, a cage for the many women kept at the beck and call of a single sultan I suppose it s not surprising to suggest that women have been catty for centuries, but it s particularly apparent in a story that features such treachery and backstabbing as women vie to become the Haseki, or favorite concubine of the sultan There is also the possibility for incredible loyalty between individuals, but that pales in comparison to the terrible bits When Celia learns that her old fiancee, Paul Pindar, is in Constantinople and might be aware of the fact that she survived the shipwreck well, it puts her on a desperately hopeful track that ruins any chance she had of embracing the life she s been given in the harem Hickman keeps the reader on the edge of her seat, wondering if there s any chance that this story might have a happy ending, and ultimately she produces a novel whose strength is in the historical details if not the character relationships.
At one point in the novel, a Turkish academic asks a rather perfectly apt question of Elizabeth What is this western obsession with harems Clearly the allure is for the sensual aspects, which the novel seems to savor at the beginning, but Hickman quickly veers away from such as complications arise While Elizabeth s love life takes a turn for the better she forgets the ass back home and meets up with a desirable Turkish man , Celia has been steadily dipping into a loss of hope as she clings to a simple desire of seeing Paul one last time even if he cannot save her Hickman really does paint a vivid picture of the Ottoman Empire and the possible lives of women who were lost to the sultan s harem It s not surprising that an author noted for her nonfiction work would take such care to thoroughly research the period, but all the effort is quite clear The shift from risque to bittersweet was a bit rough, though, and I found it to be disappointing, as though Hickman wanted to provide some salacious or frightening bits but truly wanted to tell a tragic love story, too, which left things feeling a bit lopsided There s no creschendo to the tragic love story Paul and Celia never speak, Celia never becomes a favorite of the sultan, we don t know if Celia gets to see Paul, we don t see Paul leave Constantinople, we don t see if Celia is executed for her reckless actions We know that Paul survived and mourned her loss, but that s about it, and we re left unsatisfied.
Given the separation of Celia and Paul, not just by palace walls but by time for it s been two years since Paul gave Celia up as drowned , it s not surprising that their love story is a bit one note We never get to see them interact, so each is simply harboring an image of the other that has been idealized over time Paul is simply grieving on all levels and Celia seems a bit broken, even as she hopes that she might escape the harem In novels, one generally finds characters who are willing to take extreme chances in order to change their lives, and even if they fail, they have at least made an attempt Paul and Celia both abandon the quest quite easily as they understand the odds they re up against It might be realistic, but it was also quite sad Celia may have been a much substantial character as opposed to Paul, but his lack of substance was surprising My own interpretation was that Paul didn t love Celia enough to risk everything for her and Celia was abandoned to her fate, which quite probably includes drowning the irony being that everyone originally assumed she had drowned when the ship went down This time, she d be tied into a sack and tossed from the palace walls to drown in the river if she was caught trying to open The Aviary Gate so she could see Paul again If you re looking for a glimpse at a fascinating time period, then Hickman certainly delivers there, but quite honestly, I would suggest checking out her nonfiction work before you turn to The Aviary Gate.



At the end of this book, Hickman mentions all the research she did but sadly while it definitely pays off in terms of atmosphere rustling silks, perfumed gardens, glittering jewels it does little to sustain a plot which is a standard English girl in a harem clich.
Set, as so many novels currently are, in a dual time of 1599 Constantinople and present day Istanbul, this tells the story of two women entrapped one literally in the Sultan s harem following a shipwreck, the other in a self destructive love affair One finally escapes, the other doesn t.
I read this because I was drawn to the Elizabethan story from the reviews but actually found that very derivative and was actually far interested in the present day story which doesn t get nearly as much page space.
The Elizabethan narrative felt very unevenly paced with real characters introduced at the start and then just disappearing, and the plotline reduced to a standard female power struggle in the harem, complete with poisonings, stabbings, and drowningsI was a little disappointed until the ending where suddenly Hickman seemed to get her act together, and the sudden ambiguities there raised the book If only the rest of it had been as subtle, nuanced and haunting as that.
So overall this is well written but completely clich d escapism a perfect summer read, but with hints that it could have been something far interesting.
Mystery, History, and Love Story during the Ottoman EmpireHaunting refreshingly different, the story begins when a small scrap of old manuscript, dating to 1599, is accidentally discovered among the texts of Elizabeth s studies Elizabeth feels she must learn the fate of Celia, the betrothed daughter of the ship s captain after his ship has floundered Celia has been captured brought to the Sultan s harem So begins our student s research, delving into the realm of the Sultans and Harems of the old Ottoman empire in her search for what became of Celia, whose life was obviously the focus of the original manuscript This book is an easy and fascinating read, hard to put down The chapters are well defined so that switching over the 400 years from the happenings of the past to current times is as smooth as one could wish for Rather than distracting, this shift makes the story powerful and flowing.
The book is well written, great continuity in both centuries and very informative as well Katie Hickman s research is very well done and there are many real people represented in the book as well as the fictional characters This is no over the top sensationalized piece of fiction I will not give away the main thrust of the story, but definitely recommend the book as a well painted portrait of a different life I thoroughly enjoyed it and will be watching for future books from this author.
Life in an Ottoman harem.
This received quite mixed reviews on UK, and I had reservations when I began reading Fortunately I was pleasantly surprised and found it a very enjoyable read with plenty of historical interest and atmospheric descriptions.
There are two time frames used in the novel the current day story of historical researcher, Elizabeth Staveley, is used as a tool to provide the background to the interesting historical section Elizabeth finds a fragment of a manuscript suggesting that Celia, an English girl, may have been ship wrecked by pirates at the end of the sixteenth century and subsequently sold into the harem of Sultan Mehmet III of Constantinople now Istanbul The novel follows a few months in Celia s life in 1599 Having been bought by the Sultan s favourite concubine, as a gift for her mother in law, we follow Celia s rise within the harem and the intrigue and sceming that goes on within those walls.
Paul Pindar is her fiance and assumes her drowned in the ship wreck, until his cook, John Carew, chances to see her while visiting in the palace Both the historical and the modern time frames then follow these characters in a search for the outcome of this love match Did Paul manage to rescue Celia from the harem What were their ultimate fates While parts of this novel were excellent such as the description of the gelding of a young boy so that he might become a much prized eunuch , other parts were less well written The modern story, in particular, had a rather chick lit feel to it.
In discussion, our book group hilighted many incidences of dubious behaviour or inconsistencies, and I have to admit that these criticisms were valid Some of these instances did detract from my reading, but mostly my enjoyment of the novel allowed me to ignore them I did find the ending a bit weak though.
Paul Pindar and John Carew also feature in Hickman s latest novel, The Pindar Diamond, set in Venice, and I look forward to reading this in the near future.
I am so bloody disappointed By the ending I mean that poem that Celia leaves to Anetta could have been from before she went to see Paul, that night Or indeed, it could have been from later on, after having come to the conclusion she would have never seen him ever again.
Anyway, the novel was interesting overall I got to envisage a picture of Istanbul that I loved and it made me want to visit it for real But the ending, good God, the ending Why choose such an ending to a 500 pages novel at least in Romanian it was that lengthy I hate Katie Hickman pretty much right now For making me desire of Mehmet se n scenes and by this I mean Elizabeth s Mehmet, not Mehmet the Sultan , for making me long for the presence of Paul and Celia, and basically, for desperately wishing for them to come together once again This woman is a wretched criminal, I tell you Why in God s name leave a reader unsatisfied They will never read your books again Which is my case, anyway.
Once again, I loved the novel but HATED the ending That s why it s only 3 stars worth, at least to me it is Un Segreto Sepolto Da Quattrocento AnniGli Intrighi Dell Harem Del SultanoUna Storia Di Passione E TradimentiOxford, Biblioteca Bodleiana Elizabeth Stavley Non Crede Ai Suoi Occhi Quando, Tra Le Pagine Di Un Antico Libro Di Astronomia, Scopre Il Frammento Di Una Pergamena Vecchia Di Quattrocento Anni Ha Il Colore Dell Ambra Ed Fragile Come Una Foglia D Autunno Racconta Una Storia Proibita Una Storia Rimasta Nascosta Per Secoli Che Conduce Nei Quartieri Segreti Di Istanbul Costantinopoli, Inglesi, Francesi E Veneziani Competono Tra Loro Per Rafforzare Le Relazioni Diplomatiche E Commerciali Con Il Nuovo Sultano Dell Impero Ottomano Paul Pindar Un Ricco Mercante, In Missione Per Conto Della Regina D Inghilterra Ha Il Compito Di Portare Al Sultano Un Regalo, Uno Splendido Orologio Musicale Ma Mentre Procedono I Negoziati, La Sua Attenzione Viene Attratta Da Una Voce Sempre Pi Insistente Si Dice Che Nell Harem Ci Sia Una Nuova Schiava, Una Donna Dagli Occhi Azzurri E Dalla Pelle Di Luna Che Sia Celia, La Sua Promessa Sposa, Che Lui Crede Ormai Morta Da Tempo E Possibile Che Non Sia Annegata, Ma Che Sia Stata Fatta Prigioniera Dai Turchi Paul Deve Scoprire La Verit , Deve Incontrarla, Almeno Una Volta Ma Penetrare Nelle Stanze Proibite Del Palazzo Reale Quasi Impossibile E Molto Pericoloso Perch Dietro Le Porte E I Cancelli Invalicabili Dell Harem Si Nascondono Segreti E Trame Silenziose, Lotte Di Potere E Rivalit Capaci Di Uccidere Soprattutto Ora Che Il Capo Degli Eunuchi Imperiali Giace In Fin Di Vita, Dopo Aver Mangiato Un Dolce Portato In Dono Dagli Inglesi Un Romanzo Straordinario, Scritto Magistralmente Acclamato Dalla Critica E Dal Pubblico E In Corso Di Pubblicazione In Oltre Venti Paesi, Il Giardino Delle Favorite Racconta Una Storia Di Passioni E Segreti, Di Antiche Alleanze E Intrighi Sinistri, Di Tradimenti E Ossessioni, Facendoci Penetrare Nel Mondo Sconosciuto E Proibito Dell Harem Del Sultano I heard about this novel about 3 years ago on Radio Four Neglecting to note down the title because I was driving, I discovered it again by posting a query on an historical fiction forum I m on Funnily enough, I ended up reading it just after I d read a similar tale of piracy and women carried off into captivity, The Tenth Gift by Jane Johnson Sadly, this book wasn t in the same league as Johnson s novel.
That s not to say that I didn t enjoy it, because I did Hickman has clearly done her research because the tale is well written and richly described, and unlike other reviewers, I thought it portrayed the claustrophobia creepiness of the Sultan s harem very well I thought that the story of Celia Lamprey the heroine set in the 16th century worked very well What I felt the story lacked was a plausible modern day heroine For me, she was quite two dimensional, lacking depth and indeed likeability The manner in which her romantic feelings were described did not seem real to me If her part had been engaging, I would have rated this book as a four star read.
3.
5 stars out of five Well worth reading.
Wow The start is incredibly uncomfortable to read cue crossing legs and squirming But once you get passed the mutilation and hardship the characters are instantly likable, even the cruel and rebellious ones It s obvious how much research Hickman put into the novel especially with the map and glossary , and one can not fail to appreciate this On the other hand some writers get bogged down in their research and this can threaten to overshadow the plot and characters, but Hickman narrowly avoids this I recommend this novel to people who aren t squeamish, who love historical fiction and who don t mind that certain parts have than a pinch of poetic license after all, it is fiction If historical fiction isn t your thing then the novel still delivers in plot and character relationships It begins with the poisoning of the chief eunuch and, through a series of flashbacks, we see events unfold from there Gripping stuff I loved it.