Cover for Gamba

Published by Foremost Press
Trade Paperback
208 pages

Available to booksellers

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Nice Things Said
  "A thought-provoking tale of 
   four men who set forth on a 
   bicyling trip, each self-
   reflecting on his life--
   where he's been and where 
   he's going." 

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Back Cover Blurb

It was a dark, narrow road. He'd lost all his friends, his bike, identification, money—everything. Maybe he'd gone crazy at last. He could hear dogs barking in the distance. He was running, but now he was out of breath. He leaned his back up against a building and rested. Where was he and how'd he get here? Since he was running, he must have been trying to get away from some danger.

It couldn't be called a street; two people couldn't walk down it. It was so narrow, and it got tighter the farther he walked. He felt like he was being pulled into a trap, but couldn't turn away and run from it. If he did, he'd come face to face with whatever it was that was chasing him. He couldn't hear the dogs anymore, but he could hear the deep beating of a drum and the shrill voice of a woman, taking turns as if trying to outdo each other. The sounds seemed to have something to do with whatever it was that was chasing him. The drummer urged him to hurry, and the woman warned him to get as far away as possible. It was very hot, and the walls of the houses seemed to get hotter every second. It was becoming harder to breathe. The woman screamed that he would be burned alive. The drummer beat out the syllables: You...will...burn!...You ...will...burn!

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On This Page: About this Book | About the Author
Blurb | Testimonials
Request Review Copy | A Review | Return to Catalog

by Cemil Kavukcu
Translated by Dr. Mert Akcanbas
ISBN-10: 1-936154-78-1
ISBN-13: 978-1-936154-78-4

About this Book

You wouldn't call him an old man, but he felt like one. Facing retirement, Asim Eray was stumped. How was he going to spend the rest of his life? Where had his youth gone? What had he achieved?

Escape—that's what'd he do. Escape his responsibilities and obligations, by taking a bike trip on the dusty roads of southern Turkey. Escape—no one would know exactly where he was. No cell phones allowed. Maybe down one of those roads, he'd run across something he'd lost along the way; some secret ingredient missing from his life; some bit of knowledge he used to know but had somehow forgotten.

Suddenly, a creature from his childhood reappears, not only in his dreams, but when he is wide awake. Gamba! A frightful character from his childhood nightmares is back—luring him into actual physical danger as well as a psychological abyss.

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About the Author

Photo of Cemil Kavukcu

Cemil Kavukcu was born in Inegol, Turkey. He graduated from Istanbul University, Department of Geophysical Engineering in 1976, but the real love of his life is writing. He is now well-recognized as one of the best Turkish storytellers of his time.

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A Review

Feel free to use all or part of the following, and edit to suit. This content was prepared for your use. We ask no acknowledgement of any kind.

Gamba is Turkish author Cemil Kavukcu's first novel to be translated into English. It takes place in three different settings: the main character's residence in Ankara, a geological research facility out in the wilderness, and on the back roads of archaeologically-rich southern Turkey.

Kavukcu's main character, Asim Eray, is a man lost in indecision. Clueless as to how to pass the remaining years of his life, he falls into a reverie about the way he spent his youth. The remainder of the main characters in the book are men of various ages, faced with a similar dilemma. None of them feel successful professionally or in their personal lives. Each of them knows he could have done better. Now they all ask what happened, and how can they get their lives back on track?

Asim Eray is tormented by nightmares, always about a mysterious man-creature named Gamba who he first saw in childhood. But Gamba now appears to him when he is awake as well as asleep; always threatening, always tormenting him. What is the connection between Asim's mental state and the reappearance of Gamba? Why does Gamba suddenly reappear to hold him accountable for what he has achieved throughout his life?

This masculine story of inner exploration is thought-provoking to the very end. It reminds us of the vulnerability of the child still living within all of us.

Foremost Press gratefully acknowledges the generous contribution of The Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Turkey to the translation of this book.

Gamba was published by Foremost Press. It can be ordered at
ISBN-10: 1-936154-78-1
ISBN-13: 978-1-936154-78-4
208 pp, $13.97

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