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"This perfect blend of political commentary and social observation is an excellent choice for readers interested in going beyond the headlines to gain an in-depth understanding of twenty-first-century Iran." (Booklist)
"A rare, rich glimpse inside a closed society." (Kirkus Reviews)
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Ella on 04-10-09
What a history lesson!
I enjoy reading about middle east politics and the controversy that often revolves around Islam. There is no better way to learn than through the eyes of someone who lives it.
Azadeh Moaveni is a Time magazine correspondent from California who moves to Tehran to report from there. She is Iranian, as is her boyfriend and later husband. Being a woman in Iran has put road blocks, as well as fear into her job. The Iranian intelligence has even assigned Mr. X to make sure her reporting is acceptable to the government as he tries to keep her in line using scare tactics and threats.
This book is fairly current and explains the rise of Iranian President Ahmadinejad to power and what that meant for the Iranian people. I always read or heard news clips about how he wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth, or about how he is building nuclear weapons. What this book taught me was hardships and struggles he continues to put his own people through.
This book is more about the politics, culture and religion in the region, and less about Azadeh's "honeymoon" or love life. It explains why her relationship with her family and career are in jeopardy by doing her work in Tehran rather than outside of Iran. She is a brave woman who has made life choices based on the politics of the country, and of how Ahmadinejad has oppressed the Iranian woman. The picture she paints is almost like the woman are all prisoners in their own country.
Now for the narrator. I would have rather read this book. I found myself wishing it was over. Although the content delivered, the narrator did not. A monotone voice with no emotion or acting at all. It started to grate on my nerves. It might as well have been one of those computer voices reading to you. I gave this book 3 stars instead of 4 because of the narrator.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
By Dr. on 04-15-09
An Interesting but not Compelling Book
I downloaded this book without knowing a thing about it or the author. It is well written and the author has the advantage of being Iranian-American. Although the story is not particularly compelling, and it is never "gripping," it is nevertheless an insightful glimpse into contemporary Iran and what it is like to live under a theocracy. If you are not interested in contemporary Iran, however, this book will probably not hold your interest.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful