Sheila's Reviews > A Bitter Veil

A Bitter Veil by Libby Fischer Hellmann
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May 17, 12

it was amazing
bookshelves: current_issues, cultural, romance, relationships, mystery, suspense
Read in May, 2012

American Anna meets Iranian Nouri in a bookstore in Chicago where they’re both students. Sensitive and artistic, Anna soon falls for Nouri’s reading of Iranian poetry. Meanwhile Nouri joins protests against the Shah of Iran. When Nouri decides to return home to a job, Anna agrees to marry and go with him, but the timing proves disastrous as Iran falls under anti-American leadership, the newly free venting their fury on the upper classes with random arrests and even torture.

Author Libby Fischer Hellmann blends excellent research into convincing story-telling with her novel A Bitter Veil. Avoiding condemnation, she presents the tortuous mix of ideals and consequences through the eyes of a stranger to the world. Initially delighted to be welcomed into Nouri’s family, Anna falls in love with the countryside and people, only to find her hopes betrayed. Fragile friendships might save or destroy, and the darkness of Iran’s revolution becomes not only painfully clear but also rationally predictable.

In another age, in another part of the world, a people fell apart. Anna’s horror at who her German father might have been provides a powerful background to who her new friends become, and this story is simultaneously enthralling, scarily real, and deeply thought-provoking. I really enjoyed it and couldn’t put it down.



Disclosure: I received a free ecopy of this novel from World Literary Café in exchange for my honest review.
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