A RUG TO DIE FOR by Fritz Damler

rug-to-die-forThis is a mystery set in Turkey, starring an American expat and his German wife.  Expats.  I read an opinion piece not too long ago that mused on the fact that Caucasians living in a country not their own are called expats, while people of any other skin color are called immigrants.  Hmmm.  Food for thought.

This was all about antique Turkish prayer rugs, Kilims, and the international trade in legal and illegal items.  These things fetch a huge amount of money,  and there is a large smuggling industry around them, both in bringing them into the country and taking them out of the country.

A friend of the expats, who themselves buy and sell legally,  shows up at their door with a couple of extremely valuable antique prayer rugs, which he intends to smuggle out to the US.  He is not even sure he will sell them, but is desperate to show them to somebody, because of their beauty and rarity.  He then takes them to the US, where he is later found murdered, and the rugs nowhere to be found.

Meanwhile, a group of Turkish patriots have organized to recover by any means the stolen antiquities that are all over the world, and return the items to the government, via the various institutions and museums.   These means can get pretty rough, and it is thought that they were responsible for the death of the friend.  The tale goes on, gets more complicated, and becomes something of a thriller as the head guy of the organization seems to be losing his mind.  All of this I found to be tedious, because I am less of a thriller aficionado and am more into the mystery end of things.

But all in all, it was not too bad.  After all, I read the whole thing right down to the last word, so how bad could it be, right?




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