Monday, March 15

Book Review: Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji

This month's I'm reviewing my book club selection - Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji. I actually chose this book, and was drawn to it because the jacket categorized it as a coming of age story... I always love a good sweet and salty coming of age story. I also liked the cover too. The lure of a cultural images so foreign to mine will draw me in every time. (=

Anyway, set in early 1970s Tehran, this book gives a charming snapshot of Persian/Iranian culture - one I'm not familiar with in the least. Seraji wrote with the explicit intention of exposing American readers to details of Iranian life that they would never be privy to otherwise. Always a little old fashioned myself, I enjoyed reading about the polite, gentle courtship of the main characters of the story and the sweet friendship of the protagonist and his best friend. These descriptions are obviously very real to the writer and to me where his writing really sparkles. Based on his writing, Seraji seems to be a very tender man

The story unfolds in a series of flashbacks which crescendo to the wrenching climax. While it was suspenseful, I didn't find myself longing to read this book while at work or rushing to find out the outcome. All in all, this was a simple story, pretty-well told. The writer's command of English (not his native language) is great. My friends are all rushing through reading it, so maybe my lackadaisical reading of it is indiciatve of the place I am in my personal life today.

Final verdict: while not a soul-stirring page-turner, this book was enjoyable and worth a read, if you've got the time.

As far as the Mixology 2010 Challenge, this will count as one book club selection and one book about foreign culture. So I've now finished the foreign culture section (lofty as it was... 2 books! Hey, just reading perpetually is my real challenge... give me a break!)... you can bet that a classic will be my next book club selection... I've been recommended to start with Jane Austen... do you have a recommendation for me? I'd love to hear it if you do.


Elisabeth said...

I am sooo guilty of buying books for their covers... as I do with wine on it for the label, that is. Not occasionally; no, I buy wine far too often.

Swestie said...

Yeah, that too. What can we say, Beth? We're very visual people!

Mommy Gourmet said...

I have a recommondation but not a classic, Moonlight on the Avenue of Faith Gina B. Nahai. It is a multigenerational tale. Fantastic.

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