A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America

Author: Firoozeh Dumas

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 9780307430991

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 224

View: 1075

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Finalist for the PEN/USA Award in Creative Nonfiction, the Thurber Prize for American Humor, and the Audie Award in Biography/Memoir This Random House Reader’s Circle edition includes a reading group guide and a conversation between Firoozeh Dumas and Khaled Hosseini, author of The Kite Runner! “Remarkable . . . told with wry humor shorn of sentimentality . . . In the end, what sticks with the reader is an exuberant immigrant embrace of America.”—San Francisco Chronicle In 1972, when she was seven, Firoozeh Dumas and her family moved from Iran to Southern California, arriving with no firsthand knowledge of this country beyond her father’s glowing memories of his graduate school years here. More family soon followed, and the clan has been here ever since. Funny in Farsi chronicles the American journey of Dumas’s wonderfully engaging family: her engineer father, a sweetly quixotic dreamer who first sought riches on Bowling for Dollars and in Las Vegas, and later lost his job during the Iranian revolution; her elegant mother, who never fully mastered English (nor cared to); her uncle, who combated the effects of American fast food with an army of miraculous American weight-loss gadgets; and Firoozeh herself, who as a girl changed her name to Julie, and who encountered a second wave of culture shock when she met and married a Frenchman, becoming part of a one-couple melting pot. In a series of deftly drawn scenes, we watch the family grapple with American English (hot dogs and hush puppies?—a complete mystery), American traditions (Thanksgiving turkey?—an even greater mystery, since it tastes like nothing), and American culture (Firoozeh’s parents laugh uproariously at Bob Hope on television, although they don’t get the jokes even when she translates them into Farsi). Above all, this is an unforgettable story of identity, discovery, and the power of family love. It is a book that will leave us all laughing—without an accent. Praise for Funny in Farsi “Heartfelt and hilarious—in any language.”—Glamour “A joyful success.”—Newsday “What’s charming beyond the humor of this memoir is that it remains affectionate even in the weakest, most tenuous moments for the culture. It’s the brilliance of true sophistication at work.”—Los Angeles Times Book Review “Often hilarious, always interesting . . . Like the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding, this book describes with humor the intersection and overlapping of two cultures.”—The Providence Journal “A humorous and introspective chronicle of a life filled with love—of family, country, and heritage.”—Jimmy Carter “Delightfully refreshing.”—Milwaukee Journal Sentinel “[Funny in Farsi] brings us closer to discovering what it means to be an American.”—San Jose Mercury News From the Trade Paperback edition.
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A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America

Author: Firoozeh Dumas

Publisher: Random House Incorporated

ISBN: 0812968379

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 198

View: 9295

An autobiography of growing up as an Iranian-American describes the author's family's 1971 move from Iran to Southern California, the members of her diverse family, and their struggle with culture shock.
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Adventures of an Iranian American, at Home and Abroad

Author: Firoozeh Dumas

Publisher: Random House Incorporated

ISBN: 0345499573

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 240

View: 6142

The author continues the story of her Iranian-American family and their experiences at home and abroad, from dealing with her French husband's Christmas traditions to taking fifty-one Iranian family members on a cruise to Alaska.
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Author: Firoozeh Dumas

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

ISBN: 054461237X

Category: Juvenile Fiction

Page: 224

View: 7176

Zomorod (Cindy) Yousefzadeh is the new kid on the block . . . for the fourth time. California’s Newport Beach is her family’s latest perch, and she’s determined to shuck her brainy loner persona and start afresh with a new Brady Bunch name—Cindy. It’s the late 1970s, and fitting in becomes more difficult as Iran makes U.S. headlines with protests, revolution, and finally the taking of American hostages. Even mood rings and puka shell necklaces can't distract Cindy from the anti-Iran sentiments that creep way too close to home. A poignant yet lighthearted middle grade debut from the author of the best-selling Funny in Farsi.
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A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America and American in Iran

Author: Azadeh Moaveni

Publisher: PublicAffairs

ISBN: 9781586481933

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 249

View: 8657

A young Iranian-American journalist returns to Tehran and discovers not only the oppressive and decadent life of her Iranian counterparts who have grown up since the revolution, but the pain of searching for a homeland that may not exist.
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Author: Sara Saedi

Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 1524717819

Category: Young Adult Nonfiction

Page: 288

View: 5172

The hilarious, poignant, and true story of one teens's experience growing up in America as an undocumented immigrant from the Middle East, perfect for fans of Mindy Kaling and Lena Dunham's books. At thirteen, bright-eyed, straight-A student Sara Saedi uncovered a terrible family secret: she was breaking the law simply by living in the United States. Only two years old when her parents fled Iran, she didn't learn of her undocumented status until her older sister wanted to apply for an after-school job, but couldn't because she didn't have a Social Security number. Fear of deportation kept Sara up at night, but it didn't keep her from being a teenager. She desperately wanted a green card, along with clear skin, her own car, and a boyfriend. Americanized follows Sara's progress toward getting her green card, but that's only a portion of her experiences as an Iranian-"American" teenager. From discovering that her parents secretly divorced to facilitate her mother's green card application to learning how to tame her unibrow, Sara pivots gracefully from the terrifying prospect that she might be kicked out of the country at any time to the almost-as-terrifying possibility that she might be the only one of her friends without a date to the prom. This moving, often hilarious story is for anyone who has ever shared either fear. “Very funny but never flippant, Saedi mixes ‘90s pop culture references, adolescent angst and Iranian history into an intimate, informative narrative that thoroughly defies current divisive view on immigration.”--The New York Times "With gumption, Saedi draws from her American-ness and Iranian-ness for a successful depiction of immigrant life in the U.S.: a must-read."--Kirkus, starred review "[Saedi's] encouraging advice for undocumented immigrants is invaluable, honest, and heartfelt. This irresistible and timely memoir is hard to put down."--Booklist, starred review "[Saedi's] chatty and comic voice offers surprisingly effective irony in the exploration of her life as an undocumented kid. This is an encounter with a family that many readers will understand and others will long to be a part of, and it may inspire them to reconsider and chronicle their own family tales."--The Bulletin, starred review "Readers will laugh, cry, and empathize with Saedi's adolescent journey as an undocumented Iranian immigrant living in the United States. This book will keep readers fully entertained while pushing them to deeper cultural understandings."--SLJ, starred review
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A Persian Heart in an American Kitchen

Author: Donia Bijan

Publisher: Algonquin Books

ISBN: 1565129571

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 254

View: 2460

""Donia Bijan discovers a way back to home and what it means to belong. A memoir both universal and intimate, anchored in history and lifted by the mysterious elements that only occur in a warm and inviting kitchen." --Marsha Mehran, author Pomegranate Soup. For Donia Bijan's family, food has been the language they use to tell their stories and to communicate their love. In 1978, when the Islamic Revolution in Iran threatened their safety, they fled to California's Bay Area, where the familiar flavors of Bijan's mother's cooking formed a bridge to the life they left behind. Now, through the prism of food, award-winning chef Donia Bijan unwinds her own story, finding that at the heart of it all is her mother, whose unwavering love and support enabled Bijan to realize her dreams. From the Persian world of her youth to the American life she embraced as a teenager to her years at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris (studying under the infamous Madame Brassart) to apprenticeships in France's three-star kitchens and finally back to San Francisco, where she opened her own celebrated bistro, Bijan evokes a vibrant kaleidoscope of cultures and cuisines. And she shares thirty inspired recipes from her childhood (Saffron Yogurt Rice with Chicken and Eggplant and Orange Cardamom Cookies), her French training (Ratatouille with Black Olives and Fried Bread and Purple Plum Skillet Tart), and her cooking career (Roast Duck Legs with Dates and Warm Lentil Salad and Rose Petal Ice Cream). An exhilarating, heartfelt memoir, Maman's Homesick Pie is also a reminder of the women who encourage us to shine"--
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Memoirs of a Middle Eastern Funny Man

Author: Maz Jobrani

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1476750009

Category: Humor

Page: 240

View: 7981

“A funny, insightful memoir” (Kirkus Reviews) about growing up Iranian in America, and the quest to make it as an actor in Hollywood without having to wear a turban, tote a bomb, or get kicked in the face by Chuck Norris. After he emigrated with his family to the US during the Iranian Revolution, Maz Jobrani spent most of his youth trying to fit in with his adopted culture—learning to play baseball and religiously watching Dallas. But none of his attempts at assimilation made a difference to casting directors, who only auditioned him for the role of kebab-eating, bomb-toting, extremist psychopath. When he first started out in show business, Maz endured suggestions that he spice up his stand-up act by wearing “the outfit,” fielded questions about rising gas prices, and was jeered for his supposed involvement in the Iran hostage crisis. In fact, these things happened so often that he began to wonder: Could I be a terrorist without even knowing it? And when all he seemed to be offered were roles that required looking menacingly Arabic, he wondered if he would ever make it in America. This laugh-out-loud memoir chronicles a lifetime of both killing it and bombing on stage, with “plenty to say about matters of race, assimilation, embarrassing family members, life in America for brown-skinned people before and after 9/11, the vagaries of international pop culture, and making it in big, dumb, fizzy, sometimes beautiful America” (The New York Times).
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The Dramatic Events that Shaped a Nation's Character

Author: Tony J. Williams

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

ISBN: 1442204893

Category: History

Page: 208

View: 2413

At a time when surveys reveal that Americans know less and less about our past, Tony Williams provides entertaining and informative descriptions of 50 of the most important and dramatic events from the colonial and Revolutionary period—some known and some forgotten—from the Mayflower Compact to the Annapolis Convention. Published in association with The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, America's Beginnings takes the reader throughout the American colonies and introduces many leading figures, from John Smith and John Winthrop to the Founding Fathers. Along the way, Williams examines the principles that led colonists to come to America and succeeding generations to become a free and independent nation. Read individually or from cover to cover, these stories illuminate the founding principles and heroic struggles that established the country and shaped the American character.
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A Memoir of Love and Food in Iran

Author: Jennifer Klinec

Publisher: Twelve

ISBN: 1455537683

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 256

View: 2422

For fans of Reading Lolita in Tehran, a true story of forbidden love set against the rich cultural and political backdrop of modern-day Iran. Jennifer Klinec is fearless. In her thirties, she abandons her bland corporate job to launch a cooking school from her London apartment and travel the world in search of delicious recipes and obscure culinary traditions. Her journey takes her to Iran, where she seeks out a local woman to learn the secrets of Persian cuisine. Vahid is suspicious of the strange foreigner who turns up in his mother's kitchen. Unused to such a bold and independent woman, he is frustrated to find himself, the prized only son of the house, largely ignored for the first time. But when the two are thrown together on an unexpected adventure, they discover a mutual attraction that draws them irresistibly toward each other--but also pits them against harsh Iranian laws and customs, which soon threaten to tear the unlikely lovers apart. Getting under the skin of one of the most complex and fascinating nations on earth, THE TEMPORARY BRIDE is a soaring, intricately woven story of being loved, being fed, and struggling to belong.
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Author: Shappi Khorsandi

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 1407028634

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 320

View: 1769

It's 1977 and life in Iran is becoming unpredictable. The Shah will be overthrown and events are about to take place on the world stage. But for five-year-old Shappi Khorsandi all this means is that she must flee, leaving behind a mad extended Iran clan and everything she has ever known. Shappi and her beloved brother Peyvand arrive with their parents in London - all cold weather and strange food - without a word of English. If adapting to a new culture isn't troubling enough, it soon becomes clear that the Ayatollah's henchmen are in pursuit. With the help of MI5, Shappi's family go into hiding. So apart from checking under the family car for bombs every morning, Shappi's childhood is like any other kids' - swings in the park, school plays, kiss-chase and terrorists. 'An extraordinary story...really funny and warm' Graham Norton
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Author: Kader Abdolah

Publisher: Canongate Books

ISBN: 1847678122

Category: Fiction

Page: 448

View: 9110

In the house of the mosque, the family of Aqa Jaan has lived for eight centuries. Now it is occupied by three cousins: Aqa Jaan, a merchant and head of the city's bazaar; Alsaberi, the imam of the mosque and Aqa Shoja, the mosque's muezzin. The house itself teems with life, as each of their families grows up with their own triumphs and tragedies. Sadiq is waiting for a suitor to knock at the door to ask for her hand, while her two grandmothers sweep the floors each morning dreaming of travelling to Mecca. Meanwhile Shahbal longs only to get hold of a television to watch the first moon landing. All these daily dramas are played out under the watchful eyes of the storks that nest on the minarets above. But this family will experience upheaval unknown to previous generations. For in Iran, political unrest is brewing. The shah is losing his hold on power; the ayatollah incites rebellion from his exile in France; and one day the ayatollah returns. The consequences will be felt in every corner of Aqa Jaan's family.
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A Story of Race and Inheritance

Author: Barack Obama

Publisher: Broadway Books

ISBN: 9780307394125

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 464

View: 7057

In this lyrical, unsentimental, and compelling memoir, the son of a black African father and a white American mother searches for a workable meaning to his life as a black American. It begins in New York, where Barack Obama learns that his father—a figure he knows more as a myth than as a man—has been killed in a car accident. This sudden death inspires an emotional odyssey—first to a small town in Kansas, from which he retraces the migration of his mother’s family to Hawaii, and then to Kenya, where he meets the African side of his family, confronts the bitter truth of his father’s life, and at last reconciles his divided inheritance. Pictured in lefthand photograph on cover: Habiba Akumu Hussein and Barack Obama, Sr. (President Obama's paternal grandmother and his father as a young boy). Pictured in righthand photograph on cover: Stanley Dunham and Ann Dunham (President Obama's maternal grandfather and his mother as a young girl). From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Author: John Perkins

Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers

ISBN: 9781576755129

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 250

View: 3568

Perkins, a former chief economist at a Boston strategic-consulting firm, confesses he was an "economic hit man" for 10 years, helping U.S. intelligence agencies and multinationals cajole and blackmail foreign leaders into serving U.S. foreign policy and awarding lucrative contracts to American business.
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One Family's Journey and the Chinese American Dream

Author: Eric Liu

Publisher: PublicAffairs

ISBN: 1610391950

Category: Social Science

Page: 240

View: 4185

From Tony Hsieh to Amy Chua to Jeremy Lin, Chinese Americans are now arriving at the highest levels of American business, civic life, and culture. But what makes this story of immigrant ascent unique is that Chinese Americans are emerging at just the same moment when China has emerged - and indeed may displace America - at the center of the global scene. What does it mean to be Chinese American in this moment? And how does exploring that question alter our notions of just what an American is and will be? In many ways, Chinese Americans today are exemplars of the American Dream: during a crowded century and a half, this community has gone from indentured servitude, second-class status and outright exclusion to economic and social integration and achievement. But this narrative obscures too much: the Chinese Americans still left behind, the erosion of the American Dream in general, the emergence—perhaps—of a Chinese Dream, and how other Americans will look at their countrymen of Chinese descent if China and America ever become adversaries. As Chinese Americans reconcile competing beliefs about what constitutes success, virtue, power, and purpose, they hold a mirror up to their country in a time of deep flux. In searching, often personal essays that range from the meaning of Confucius to the role of Chinese Americans in shaping how we read the Constitution to why he hates the hyphen in "Chinese-American," Eric Liu pieces together a sense of the Chinese American identity in these auspicious years for both countries. He considers his own public career in American media and government; his daughter's efforts to hold and release aspects of her Chinese inheritance; and the still-recent history that made anyone Chinese in America seem foreign and disloyal until proven otherwise. Provocative, often playful but always thoughtful, Liu breaks down his vast subject into bite-sized chunks, along the way providing insights into universal matters: identity, nationalism, family, and more.
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The Transformation of an American Family

Author: Amy Ellis Nutt

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 0812995422

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 320

View: 6784

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The inspiring true story of transgender actor and activist Nicole Maines, whose identical twin brother, Jonas, and ordinary American family join her on an extraordinary journey to understand, nurture, and celebrate the uniqueness in us all. Nicole appears as TV’s first transgender superhero on CW’s Supergirl When Wayne and Kelly Maines adopted identical twin boys, they thought their lives were complete. But by the time Jonas and Wyatt were toddlers, confusion over Wyatt’s insistence that he was female began to tear the family apart. In the years that followed, the Maineses came to question their long-held views on gender and identity, to accept Wyatt’s transition to Nicole, and to undergo a wrenching transformation of their own, the effects of which would reverberate through their entire community. Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Amy Ellis Nutt spent almost four years reporting this story and tells it with unflinching honesty, intimacy, and empathy. In her hands, Becoming Nicole is more than an account of a courageous girl and her extraordinary family. It’s a powerful portrait of a slowly but surely changing nation, and one that will inspire all of us to see the world with a little more humanity and understanding. Named One of the Ten Best Books of the Year by People • One of the Best Books of the Year by The New York Times Book Review and Men’s Journal • A Stonewall Honor Book in Nonfiction • Finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for Transgender Nonfiction “Fascinating and enlightening.”—Cheryl Strayed “If you aren’t moved by Becoming Nicole, I’d suggest there’s a lump of dark matter where your heart should be.”—The New York Times “Exceptional . . . ‘Stories move the walls that need to be moved,’ Nicole told her father last year. In telling Nicole’s story and those of her brother and parents luminously, and with great compassion and intelligence, that is exactly what Amy Ellis Nutt has done here.”—The Washington Post “A profoundly moving true story about one remarkable family’s evolution.”—People “Becoming Nicole is a miracle. It’s the story of a family struggling with—and embracing—a transgender child. But more than that, it’s about accepting one another, and ourselves, in all our messy, contradictory glory.”—Jennifer Finney Boylan, former co-chair of GLAAD and author of She’s Not There: A Life in Two Genders
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Author: Kamin Mohammadi

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408834294

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 288

View: 7897

Kamin Mohammadi was nine years old when her family fled Iran during the 1979 Revolution. Bewildered by the seismic changes in her homeland, she turned her back on the past and spent her teenage years trying to fit in with British attitudes to family, food and freedom. She was twenty-seven before she returned to Iran, drawn inexorably back by memories of her grandmother's house in Abadan, with its traditional inner courtyard, its noisy gatherings and its very walls steeped in history. The Cypress Tree is Kamin's account of her journey home, to rediscover her Iranian self and to discover for the first time the story of her family: a sprawling clan that sprang from humble roots to bloom during the affluent, Biba-clad 1960s, only to be shaken by the horrors of the Iran-Iraq War and the heartbreak of exile, and toughened by the struggle for democracy that continues today. This moving and passionate memoir is a love letter both to Kamin's extraordinary family and to Iran itself, an ancient country which has survived so much modern tumult but where joy and resilience will always triumph over despair.
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Greed, Murder, Obsession, and an Arsonist in the Vineyards of California

Author: Frances Dinkelspiel

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

ISBN: 1250033217

Category: True Crime

Page: 304

View: 8347

On October 12, 2005, a massive fire broke out in the Wines Central wine warehouse in Vallejo, California. Within hours, the flames had destroyed 4.5 million bottles of California's finest wine worth more than $250 million, making it the largest destruction of wine in history. The fire had been deliberately set by a passionate oenophile named Mark Anderson, a skilled con man and thief with storage space at the warehouse who needed to cover his tracks. With a propane torch and a bucket of gasoline-soaked rags, Anderson annihilated entire California vineyard libraries as well as bottles of some of the most sought-after wines in the world. Among the priceless bottles destroyed were 175 bottles of Port and Angelica from one of the oldest vineyards in California made by Frances Dinkelspiel's great-great grandfather, Isaias Hellman, in 1875. Sadly, Mark Anderson was not the first to harm the industry. The history of the California wine trade, dating back to the 19th Century, is a story of vineyards with dark and bloody pasts, tales of rich men, strangling monopolies, the brutal enslavement of vineyard workers and murder. Five of the wine trade murders were associated with Isaias Hellman's vineyard in Rancho Cucamonga beginning with the killing of John Rains who owned the land at the time. He was shot several times, dragged from a wagon and left off the main road for the coyotes to feed on. In her new book, Frances Dinkelspiel looks beneath the casually elegant veneer of California's wine regions to find the obsession, greed and violence lying in wait. Few people sipping a fine California Cabernet can even guess at the Tangled Vines where its life began.
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Inside the Iranian Revolution

Author: Behrooz Ghamari-Tabrizi

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781944869038

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 316

View: 6558

Set in the tumultuous aftermath of the Iranian revolution in 1979, Remembering Akbar weaves together the stories of a group of characters who share a crowded death row cell in Tehran's notorious Evin prison. A teeming world is evoked vividly through the relationships, memories, and inner lives of these political prisoners, many of whom were eventually executed. Told through a series of linked memories by the narrator, Akbar, whose striking candor is infused with a mordant sense of humor, the story takes the reader beyond mere political struggles and revelations, to a vibrant alternative history, as it were, by the losers. Rather than exalting the heroic, or choosing to focus merely on despair or redemption, Remembering Akbar reveals eloquently how life unfolds when death is starkly imminent. It is a deeply moving story of great camaraderie, biting humor, and soulful remembrance.
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