The Empire of Lies is an incredibly detailed alternative history. What if a time traveler helped the Ottoman Empire win the 1682 Battle of Vienna? How would it impact present-day life?
The answer is it would be a completely different scenario. A Sultan rules over the entire world except in Christian America. Islam is the official faith. Woman are segregated in public. Honor killing of them, for eloping or unmarried pregnancy, are on the rise under the new and more rigid Sultan.
The time traveler returns to our modern-day Paris to receive medical treatment. He kills a man for his clothes and goes to a charity hospital. His doctor is suspicious of the tattoos on his chest that explain how to time travel in an ancient language. The time traveler is pursued by Nisreen, an outspoken female activist; Ramazan, her anesthesiologist husband; and Kamal, the doctor’s brother who has an unrequited love for Nisreen as well as a job finding terrorists for the state. The three decide to use time travel to get civilization back on its original path.
For history buffs, this is clearly a five-star book. For others, like me, it a fun and different take on a science fiction thriller. I especially liked the ending. An intriguing story of what if, Empire of Lies is a compelling read. 4 stars!
Thanks to Forge Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.