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The tale of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution, Marjane Satrapi's graphic-novel/memoir is brilliant and unique. Telling the story of the fall of the Shah and the triumph of the fundamentalists through a child's point of view makes for an extremely interesting story. At first, I was hesitant to read a book that was a graphic novel, but I was drawn right in immediately (After the break for a scan of one of the beginning). This is "the story of a childhood" and it takes you through the turbulence of Iran in the 1980s - the war with Iraq, the takeover of the American embassy, the increasingly severe regime. Marjane's parents were at first overjoyed with the overthrow of the Shah, as were most Iranians. Yet they were soon disillusioned with the new regime. For example, shortly after the revolution, Marjane's mother is assaulted by a group of men because she wasn't wearing the proper clothes - a shapeless chador. As she says, "'They insulted me. They said that women like me should be pushed up against a wall and f*cked. And then thrown in the garbage. And if I didn't want that to happen, I should wear the veil.'" and Marjane comments, "That incident made my mother sick for several days."(74) Soon, Iran is attacked by Iraq and Marjane grapples with the meaning behind these attacks. In the beginning, she is extremely patriotic and sympathizes with the plight of her people under Iranian invasion. Marjane's father believes that "the real Islamic invasion has come from our own government." (81) and that the real danger in Iran isn't the invading force, but the ever-radicalizing citizens within. Marjane wrote a sequel, Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return, which tells the story of living abroad during her teenage years and her desire to return to Iran. The complete memoir was published (parts 1 and 2 together) in The Complete Persepolis and was made into an animated French movie in 2007, aptly titled Persepolis. Overall, Marjane Satrapi's memoir is not only a fantastic work of literature but a stunning work of art. Her childhood is so interesting and enthralling that you simply cannot stop reading. An inspiring quote to end with - "It's fear that makes us lose our conscience. It's also what transforms us into cowards." Rating: ★★★★★

Purple Hibiscus

Brother, I'm Dying