Wednesday, August 2, 2006

Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return

Author: Marjane Satrapi, translated by Anjali Singh
Reading Level: 8th and up

Pages: 187
Publisher: Pantheon Books, Random House
Edition: Paperback, 2005 (2002 - 2003)

This 2nd installment (which was the 3rd and 4th Persepolis comic strip collections originally) does not have the same impact on my psyche as the first, the story of a childhood. In the first collection, the juxtaposition of the extreme cruel suffering of the Iranians and the ultimate innocence of a young child creates at once a surreal and truly clear view of the society. The somberness interjected with the accute humor made reading Persepoli 1 an unforgetable emotional rollercoaster ride. This one, although is as honest and intelligent, lacks both the anguish and the childlike clarity. It nevertheless allows readers a glimpse of the contemporary (up to 12 years ago) Iranian life and to ponder the meaning of "freedom."

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