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'Captivating and compelling. A masterpiece' Independent on Sunday

Set against the backdrop of the collapsing Ottoman Empire, the Gallipoli campaign and the subsequent bitter struggle between Greeks and Turks, Birds Without Wings traces the fortunes of one small community in south-west Anatolia - a town in which Christian and Muslim lives and traditions have co-existed peacefully for centuries.

When war is declared and the outside world intrudes, the twin scourges of religion and nationalism lead to forced marches and massacres, and the peaceful fabric of life is destroyed. Birds Without Wings is a novel about the personal and political costs of war, and about love: between men and women; between friends; between those who are driven to be enemies; and between Philothei, a Christian girl of legendary beauty, and Ibrahim the Goatherd, who has courted her since infancy. Epic in sweep, intoxicating in its sensual detail, it is an enchanting masterpiece.


A more ambitious novel than Captain Corelli, and a better one

Financial Times

A mesmerising patchwork of horror, humour and humanity


A magnificent, poetic, colossal novel... Superbly written... It is, in every sense, a sublime book

Irish Times

His most serious and ambitious achievement to date

Times Literary Supplement

Pleasurable... Like Steinbeck, de Bernières deserves praise for his imaginative sympathy

Independent on Sunday

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Also by Louis de Bernieres

Of Love and Desire
The Dust that Falls from Dreams
Imagining Alexandria
The Death of Miss Agatha Feakes (Storycuts)
Talking to George (Storycuts)
The Girt Pike (Storycuts)
A Partisan's Daughter
Sunday Morning At The Centre Of The World
Captain Corelli's Mandolin
The Troublesome Offspring Of Cardinal Guzman
Senor Vivo & The Coca Lord
War Of Don Emmanuel's Nether Parts


The Golden House
The Handmaid's Tale
To Kill A Mockingbird
The Award
Tiger Men
Beauty in Thorns
Echo Burning
A Gentleman in Moscow
The Girl on the Train
The Heart's Invisible Furies
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
The Drover's Wife
The Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-time
The Golden Age
Swing Time
Life After Life
The Tea Gardens
A Long Way from Home
Uncommon Type