In the summer, feeling wistful for a holiday abroad and wanting to think of something to interest the kids now they’re not little, I signed up for a subscription service called Snack Surprise. Every month they send me a box of snacks from a mystery country.

The box that we received in September was full of Turkish treats, including Turkish delight, of course, but also a new (to us) version of Doritos, a can of mysterious fizzy drink, some chocolate, sweets. It was actually genuinely quite exciting to open up the box and found out what was inside, and what country everything was from.

There was a little booklet with interesting, possibly dubious facts about Turkey (“Camel wrestling tournaments, held throughout the Aegean region in the winter, and bull wrestling near the Black Sea, are also popular”), and a list of all the items in the box, with the option to rate them out of 3. On the whole, the taste were more subtle than UK snacks – the sweets were less sweet, as was the chocolate. I’m looking forward to sampling future boxes.

This experience got me thinking, and I decided that instead of roaming the world piecemeal on the blog, gradually making a patchwork of countries and reviews of culture from those nations (you can see where I’ve “been” in my index here), I’d start to dedicate a month to a particular nation.

Inspired by my Snack Box, Turkey seemed a good place to start, so from Thanksgiving to Christmas this year I’ll be posting every week a selection of Turkey themed posts: I’ll be looking at Turkish telly, Turkish film, Turkish music, Turkish art, reading books by Turkish writers, talking about Turkish food and remembering trips to Turkey that I’ve taken in the past. I’ll probably try to avoid politicking, though I might read a travelogue, a history book or a cook book.

If you have written any reviews of Turkish books and other elements of Turkish culture, then feel free to add a link in the comments throughout the next month, as I’d be really interested to get your take on things, and to get inspiration for my reading and watching.

Next year I’ll be moving even further afield, with January dedicated to Japan, February to Afghanistan, March to Greece, April to Portugal, May to Nigeria and June to Trinidad. I’ll also be continuing to post reviews of culture from other places around the globe every now and then.

Join the Conversation


  1. What a great idea to dedicate a month to all cultural things connected with Turkey. Turkish writer and Nobel Laureate Orhan Pamuk is one of my favourite authors of all time, so I really recommend his books, which are true masterpieces, really. He captures the spirit of Turkey through the ages, including it being “torn” between the East and the West, so explores identity as well. I absolutely loved his debut “The White Castle”, and also his books “The Black Book” and “My Name is Red”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on penwithlit and commented:
    Interesting! I visited both Greece and Turkey back around 1970. It was in a mini-trek, the inexpensive travel of a group in a van that was prevalent at that time. I found the people friendly and Gallipoli deeply sad, leaving an unforgettable impression. Most astoundingly beautiful was Prices Island whose history I learnt of since.

    Liked by 1 person

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