From the first chapter it is obvious that this book is very much about the Iranian people, showing both how tolerant and kind they can be, but not holding back in telling how oppressed and controlled they sometimes are by propaganda and political institutions.
This is a beautifully written book. You don't have to agree with all the points and analysis of the author to utterly enjoy this book.
The order of the writing can be somewhat jarring as it jumps from subject to subject, creating snapshots of Iran rather than a chronological overview of its social history. It may not report the politics as in depth as other books on the subject, but it is excellent and compelling when it comes to describing Iranian society, never holding back from asking the sharp questions.
Even if you are not particularly fascinated by Iran or the Middle East this book is still interesting and offers a view of freedom and liberty in a strict country exploring the impact Sharia law has over the citizens. Never holding back from criticizing the government or the Western world, is it rare to see such an open account of a heavily censored society.
[The author] does not use the book to highlight all of the positive aspects of Iran and to criticise the western world. Instead she gives factual information which is backed up by personal accounts making the subject matter easily accessible and interesting to read. Yes there are criticisms of the west but there are also criticisms of the Middle East. At no point did I feel that I should be defending the west, I was merely captivated by this insight into a country which is still deeply affected by strict Sharia Law and by the people who are waiting for a messiah to bring them freedom. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in other cultures. It seems to be written from the heart rather than as a textbook to be studied and I personally found this to be very engaging. The author understands how to bring a light hearted tone to serious subjects which makes the book easy to read and enjoyable throughout.