February 12, 2010 § 2 Comments
I’m currently reading Censoring an Iranian Love Story by Shahriar Mandanipour – probably the romantic in me. It was greatly recommended by a friend and is also one of the picks of a bookclub I’m part off.
I’ve just started it today and it’s already gripped me. A story of two people falling in love in political Iran & the difficulties in writing and publishing. Check it out if you can!
A review that I came upon:
From one of Iran’s most accomplished and controversial contemporary writers, his first novel to appear in English—a dazzlingly inventive work of fiction: two powerful narratives, seamlessly entwined, that open a revelatory window into what it’s like to live, to love, and to be an artist in today’s Iran.
The author’s fictional alter ego, who bears his name, has spent years struggling to publish in Iran, reluctantly bending his work to the will of the all-powerful censor at the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance. But now Shahriar faces his greatest challenge yet: to write a bewitching love story, set in the present, in Iran.
He writes about beautiful Sara and fiercely proud Dara, who, forbidden by the state from being alone together, pass encoded messages in the pages of their favorite books, and meet in secret amid the bustling streets, Internet cafés, and private gardens of Tehran. But writing of their encounters, their desires, puts Shahriar in as much danger as his Iranian Romeo and Juliet. Can Sara and Dara’s love survive? Will the Ministry issue Shahriar a publishing permit? The answers are as shocking as they are unexpected.
Laced with humor and irony, at once provocative and deeply moving, Censoring an Iranian Love Story is a triumph of art and spirit.