Last night I was happy to attend a book party for the kind of book I normally don’t like: a guide! But this was boring old Fodor’s or Lonely Planet. Instead these books were prepared by an artist and a true insider of two cities. Published by Jotun and entitled Emel loves Istanbul and Emel love Paris, I’m more than a little envious. Why? Because Emel Kurhan has proven again that no genre or idea is bad or irrelevant if approached with inspiration and style, something she has in an unlimited supply. These guides are really clever, and beautifully executed. Using her own snap shots and immaculately hand-written post-it notes, this artist and true insider has re-invented the guidebook for people like me who don’t want use guidebooks and would normally much prefer to just stumble around or find someone who looks smarter than me to show them around in order to avoid being stuck on a generic tour.
If you’re in Istanbul, Emel’s doing a book signing tomorrow night, September 13, beginning at around 7 pm at Midnight Express in Nişantaşı as part of Istanbul’s Fashion’s Night Out. Don’t miss it. Istanbul loves Emel.