The Traitor's Niche

Author(s): Ismail Kadare

Classic Fiction

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2017 MAN BOOKER INTERNATIONAL PRIZEAt the heart of the Ottoman Empire, in the main square of Constantinople, a niche is carved into ancient stone. Here, the sultan displays the severed heads of his adversaries. Tundj Hata, the imperial courier, is charged with transporting heads to the capital - a task he relishes and performs with fervour. But as he travels through obscure and impoverished territories, he makes money from illicit side-shows, offering villagers the spectacle of death. The head of the rebellious Albanian governor would fetch a very high price. A surreal tale of rebellion and tyranny from the master of European literature.


Product Information

Long-listed for The International Man Booker Prize 2017 (UK).

"The narrative unfurls with the shifting intensity of a dream, enriched by unsettlingly surreal details... It is a brilliant examination of the way that authoritarian structures operate: Kafka on a grander political scale." * Sunday Times * "Although on the surface this is a deeply compelling historical novel, its scope is wider. At heart, what Kadare seeks to demonstrate is the terrible nature of a world in which every human element is suborned to the state... Kadare well deserves his growing European audience." * Daily Telegraph * "An extraordinary and complex novel whose time has come...40 years after its initial publication [in Albanian]" * Herald * "In John Hodgson's lucid translation, The Traitor's Niche is absorbing from start to finish. Kadare's allegorical burlesque has rarely been so trenchant." * Spectator * "The novel is a hymn to language, something that, as Ottoman bureaucrats intent on obliterating it instinctively know, and as Kadare's novels prove, is not easily silenced" -- Claire Allfree * Daily Mail *

Ismail Kadare is Albania's best-known novelist and poet. Translations of his novels have appeared in more than forty countries. He was awarded the inaugural Man Booker International Prize in 2005, and the Jerusalem Prize in 2015.

General Fields

  • : 9781784873202
  • : Penguin Random House
  • : Vintage Classics
  • : 0.149
  • : December 2017
  • : March 2018
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Ismail Kadare
  • : Paperback
  • : 318
  • : English
  • : 208