The Istanbul Fairy

Pelin lives in an old quarter of İstanbul and is curious about one old house at the end of the street. Everybody says the house is haunted, but it is a lovely old wooden house with wisteria branches coverng its walls. So, she decides to discover the haunted house herself. There, she meets an old and quite unusual lady, with a sea blue robe and long pink hair – she presents herself as Keroessa, the Istanbul Fairy. Pelin likes her at first sight and promises to come to visit her again.

A homework brings this opportunity. Her teacher asks to learn some legends about Istanbul and to visit the places where these legends happen. Then students should prepare a short presentation about what they have seen and heard. Pelin plans to get help from their archaeologist neighbor, however she departs for an excavation. So, Pelin decides to ask the fairy to help her.

Then starts an enchanting travel through Istanbul and Pelin encounters several historical and mythological figures who coined the city: First she meets Amikos, son of Poseidon who lives as a fisherman today and travels across the Bosphorus with a Byzantine whale, who carries a fisherman’s boat on her back. Together they visit Theodora the famous Byzantine Empress, Poseidon’s palace with its sirens, dolphins and sea horses, the Maiden’s Tower where an overweight Byzantine princess was interned and the Galata Tower where they meet Hezarfen, an Ottoman savant who plans to be the first flying human.

This little novel delivers the charming historical aura of Istanbul together with an entertaining story. The Istanbul Fairy is an interesting read for kids and adults alike.

Novel, Tudem, 2014, 144 pages

Themes: Fantasy, mythology, travel,

fairies, dreams

Age: 8+

 

 

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