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The Book

Set in the 16th century imperial Ottoman court of Suleyman the Magnificent, this novel of mystery, suspense and romance introduces the Venetian Conte Vincenzo Lupo (Il Lupo, the Wolf), renowned for his swordsmanship and investigative skills. Fearing Topkapi Palace officials may be complicit in assassination attempts and palace intrigues, Il Lupo travels to Istanbul at Suleyman’s behest. His equally skilled daughter, Francesca, whom he has raised as a single father, accompanies him disguised as a boy. Escorted by Kemal, commander of the elite palace guard, and Aziz, a formidable Harem eunuch, they quash assassination attempts against Suleyman and his favored concubine, Roxelana. Multiple mysteries requiring resolution include the theft, masterminded by the ghoulish Shaitan, of the sacred relics of Muhammed from the palace repository and murders committed by a demonic jinn, dwelling in labyrinthine passageways beneath the palace. Although filled with action, suspense and mystery, at its heart, the novel is a tale of love, awakenings, yearnings and beneficence that will touch the human spirit.