Istanbul Love Bus - a novel
A Cold War hippy romance…
On a visit to Istanbul in 2016, standing in Sultanahmet Square, I reminisced on what it had been like in 1968 when I first saw it: a sleepy, untouristy historical park surrounded by hippy microbuses.
That same day the reminiscence came to life as if in a video, characters appeared and began to act, and I wrote it all down. Two weeks later, when I left Istanbul, I had 30,000 words of a novel, now entitled Istanbul Love Bus.
That novel, now 80,000 words (282 pages), takes place in Turkey—mostly Istanbul and Edirne:
Flora, a beautiful hippy artist from California (you’ve met her briefly in Paris Girls Secret Society, my first-published novel) meets Julien, a young French sculptor in Paris.
They run away to Istanbul, meet other hippies, and set out for Kathmandu, but destiny has other plans for them.
Bruce, a graduate student waiting to be drafted for Vietnam, meets Sarah, a US Peace Corps teacher in Istanbul, and together they encounter Nur Baba, a Sufi Hurufî mystic with the ability to read people’s destiny in their faces.
Meanwhile, a Cold War drama is taking place under cover that could result in the total destruction of one of the world’s greatest works of art….