Today's research: We're currently living in Istanbul, writing a book about a post-Tudor steampunk pirate in London, so it wouldn't necessarily make sense that the life of one of Turkey's greatest naval heroes would be inspiring. But this was simply fascinating with many bits and pieces that can be used for our OverLondon pirate, Alex Reign, The Dread Pirate Purple Reign.
For one thing, the threat of Barbary pirates still comes up in British conversation and it was great to understand who that pirate was. Or more to the point, who that Sultan of Algeria was! Plus, there wasn't one Barbarossa, but two and he was an exceptional strategist and statesman. There's so much food for thought here as far as world building a 16th century alt-history world, but also with reconsidering the way the Ottomans and the "East" are still portrayed in Western history today.
I'd highly recommend this one. I've just given it to a friend to read and have taken half a notepad of notes.