K's Reviews > Honeymoon in Tehran: Two Years of Love and Danger in Iran

Honeymoon in Tehran by Azadeh Moaveni
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's review
Dec 08, 10

bookshelves: memoirs, mideastwomen, thank-god-i-wasn-t-born-there

Well, Azadeh Moaveni has certainly matured since the whiny days of "Lipstick Jihad," although she still displays the same angst about wanting to belong in Iran while feeling unable to reconcile with the lack of freedom there. Like "The Ayatollah Begs to Differ," "Honeymoon in Tehran" braids three themes together -- Iranian history and current events, Iranian day-to-day experience and culture, and Azadeh's personal lens as both a journalist and a resident of Tehran. Unlike "The Ayatollah Begs to Differ," "Honeymoon in Tehran" is written in clear sentences and well-organized, is not didactic in tone, follows a narrative arc, and seamlessly darts between these three aspects so that you see where Azadeh is going and what she's trying to say. Although I'm sure it's impossible to ever fully grasp another place and culture, I came away from "Honeymoon in Tehran" feeling like I had lived in Tehran along with Azadeh and seen both its drawbacks and its appeal. While Azadeh's life in Tehran was understandably increasingly stressful as Ahmadinejad's government cracked down religiously and became more hostile to foreign journalists, the reader also saw how living surrounded by a warm and supportive extended family, especially with a new baby, was a difficult thing to walk away from.

Although this book sometimes felt too long and detailed, overall I enjoyed this look at Iranian culture and at Azadeh's attempt to find her place within it.

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