- Sarah Mason
I recently finished an excellent story by author Dalia Sofer called The Septembers of Shiraz. Based around the 1979 Iranian Revolution, this novel focuses on the struggles of living during this time period and how it affected people of all ages. The story follows the Amin family, which includes Isaac and his wife, Farnaz, their son Parviz, and their daughter, Shirin.
Sofer follows Isaac as he is jailed by the Revolutionary Guard for business dealings that seem against the Revolution, while Farnaz deals with her housemaid, Habibeh, whose son joined the Revolutionary Guard. Parviz is a young man who is now living in New York City so that he can earn a better education, and Shirin deals with attending a new school and getting along with her classmates.
Dalia, herself, is an Iranian woman who escaped Iran with her family when she was just ten years old. Her father had been jailed for some time while they were in Iran. On this, Sofer says, “Writing this novel was a way for me to get as close to my father’s experience as possible.” This novel seems to be almost a personal mission for Sofer so that she could bring closure to such an event.
Sofer’s excellent imagery and description make the story even more enjoyable, and she describes many different historical events that occurred in Iran through the eyes of the characters, which makes it seem like the reader is talking to an actual person who lived through the Revolution. I would recommend this book to anyone, especially someone who is interested in Iranian politics!