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Book Club Discussion questions for Death in Istanbul

  1. Death in Istanbul begins with Dotsy and Lettie landing at Istanbul’s modern Ataturk Airport. Does it surprise you that this airport is quite similar to European and American airports?
  2. Would you like to go to Istanbul? Does the international news about Turkey cause you to fear the place or do you consider the very cosmopolitan Istanbul to be one of the safest options for visiting in the Middle East?
  3. Dotsy manages to see some of Istanbul’s greatest sites in spite of her other problems. Which would interest you the most? The Topkapi Palace, The Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, the Basilica Cisterns or the Covered Market?
  4. Istanbul is full of places important to fans of Agatha Christie–the Pera Palace Hotel, the Sirkeki Rail Station, the ferry across the Sea of Marmara from Haydarpasa Station to Sirkeki. Do you think you could get any sense of the early 20th century by visiting these places today?
  5. Istanbul straddles two continents: Europe and Asia. Does the city lean more to the east or west? The great leader, Ataturk, favored the West but current political leaders seem to favor the Muslim culture of the East. What did you see in this book that shows the strong influence of both?
  6. All the American travelers at the hotel are based very loosely on travelers I have known. Which one(s) fit your idea of typical American tourist?
  7. Weird as it may seem, I got my inspiration about a claim of theft involving billion dollar bearer bonds. There is actually no proof that any such pricey bonds have ever existed. Did this bother you in the story?
  8. I normally include a Cast of Characters on the first page, but in this book I flat-out forgot. Do you wish I had included a Cast of Characters or are you glad I didn’t?
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