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In this remarkably human portrait of one of the 20th century's most complicated personalities, author Andrew Scott Cooper traces Mohammad Reza Pahlavi's life from childhood through his ascension to the throne in 1941. He highlights the turbulence of the postwar era, during which the shah survived assassination attempts and coup plots to build a modern, pro-Western state and launch Iran onto the world stage as one of the world's top five powers. Listeners get the story of the shah's political career alongside the story of his courtship and marriage to Farah Diba, who became a power in her own right; the story of the beloved family they created; and an exclusive look at life inside the palace during the Iranian Revolution.
Cooper's investigative account ultimately delivers the fall of the Pahlavi dynasty through the eyes of those who were there: leading Iranian revolutionaries; President Jimmy Carter and White House officials; US Ambassador William Sullivan and his staff in the American embassy in Tehran; American families caught up in the drama; and even Empress Farah herself, along with the rest of the Iranian imperial family.
At once intimate and sweeping, The Fall of Heaven recreates in stunning detail the dramatic and final days of one of the world's most legendary ruling families, the unseating of which helped set the stage for the current state of the Middle East.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Guerin Shea on 09-05-16
Excellent account of a pivotal and sad time
This book is an excellent account of a pivotal and sad time. The Iranian Devolution was the first international crisis I was old enough to fully grasp, and in addition to the scope of Carter's complete ineptitude this work shined a great light on how both the Shah has been mischaracterized by leftist historical revisionists but also how radical Islamists (is that so hard to say, dems?) manipulate the masses to meet their own diabolical aims. This is just as pertinent now as it was in 1979, since the current POTUS obviously hasn't learned from relatively recent history.......
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
By L. Maranto on 09-04-16
I learned so much, but will have to reread
At first I was skeptical because it seemed so solidly pro-Shah. Later in the book, I became convinced, not that he was perfect, but that he did many good things and wanted to do so much more. I am convinced that his overthrow was a terrible thing for Iran, the US and the world. I say this in spite of the fact that I am an American who believes strongly in democracy.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful