In 'Embroideries,' Marjane Satrapi again returns to the Iran of her youth, this time taking readers to a more intimate place, the space inhabited by women
by Marjane Satrapi
Pantheon, 144 pp., $16.95Marjane Satrapi's award-winning, two-volume graphic autobiography Persepolis and Persepolis 2, introduced readers to a world that was thick with nostalgia and hope. In Embroideries, Satrapi again returns to the Iran of her youth, this time taking readers to a more intimate place, the space inhabited by women. Aunts, mothers, grandmothers, and close family friends share their frank observations about love, being a mistress, husbands, sex, saving oneself for marriage and what to do if you don't with unabashed candor, while the child version of Satrapi dutifully keeps the samovar warm and, luckily for us, listens with an attentive ear. The real gift of Embroideries is seeing that women in the "veiled" world are not as demure or sheltered as readers in the Western world might think. Sometimes hilarious, sometimes doleful, but always painstakingly honest, it's a nonstop read that keeps readers engaged long after the book is finished.