|Detail from a "Tree of life" carpet|
This otherness is very present in A passion for killing. A carpet dealer goes missing, and then is discovered murdered, meanwhile Suleyman, Ikmen's former assistant, is immersed in an investigation, into what appears to be a gangland murder, but may have links to a very Byzantine conspiracy. The novel's well written, the crime/s are cleverly plotted, and there are great moments of tension - if perhaps occasionally a few coincidences too many. The mores of modern Turkey and its struggles to come to terms with its past are also well described; and as ever with Nadel Istanbul is lovingly portrayed.
The only reason I wouldn't recommend this novel as a first read in the Ikmen series to a newcomer, is that it is quite heavily dependent on its immediate predecessor in the series Dance with death, which I had read previously, albeit a long time ago; and it really did help that I had read that. It's not absolutely essential, but I think large chunks of the book would have been fairly incomprehensible without it.
If you're an Ikmen fan you'll enjoy this, as ever with Nadel it's well written and plotted, and the characterisation of the central characters can't be faulted - there's also a fabulously oily "baddie". For aficionados of the Arabian nights there's some great magic carpet lore in here. But don't make this the first book you read in the series.