I Was Reading

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The Book of Fate by Parinoush Saniee
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

When I started this book I was intrigued and got into the story very quickly and easily. I immediately felt great compassion for Massoumeh and her desire to learn and be different from her mother and the other subjugated women in her village.

She loves school and has a close friend who attends the same school.  She meets a local man and falls in love, but when her family discover his letters they accuse her of bringing them dishonour. She is badly beaten by her brother, and her parents hastily arrange for her to marry an old man she’s never met. She has no choice but to get married and face a life without love, and the prospect of no education . Fortunately a neighbour intervenes and she is married to a man who is kind and makes no demands of her.

But all is not roses and she finds out her new husband is a political dissident and a threat to the Shah’s oppressive regime. When the secret service arrive to arrest him, it is the start of a terrifying period for Massoumeh.

The story spans five turbulent decades of Iranian history, from before the 1979 revolution, through the Islamic Republic, and up to the present.

It was an informative read, very frustrating for women of the west who have the ability to do what they want, to make their own decisions and live the life of their choosing. The end of the book frustrated and angered me.

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