Even After All This Time: A Story of Love, Revolution, and Leaving Iran

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9780060745332: Even After All This Time: A Story of Love, Revolution, and Leaving Iran

At the age of ten, a young Iranian girl witnesses the horror of her father's execution and escapes the revolution with her sister.

Growing up in Tehran in the 1970s, Afschineh Latifi and her sister and two brothers enjoyed a life of luxury and privilege. Their father, a self–made man, had worked his way up from nothing to become a colonel in the Shah's army, and their mother, a woman of equally modest roots, had made a career for herself as a respected schoolteacher. But in February, 1979, Colonel Latifi was arrested by members of the newly installed Khomeini regime, and publicly pilloried as an "Enemy of God." Some months later, after having been shunted from one prison cell to another, and without benefit of a legitimate trial, Colonel Latifi was summarily executed. Fearing for the safety of her children, Mrs. Latifi made a wrenching decision: to send her daughters, ages ten and eleven, to the west, splitting up the family until they could safely reunite. Out on their own, Afschineh and her sister, Afsaneh, were forced to become strong young women before they'd even had a childhood.

Even After All This Time is a story of hope and heartache, a story of a family torn apart for six harrowing years, and finally coming together to rebuild in America. In the richly evocative tradition of the bestselling Reading Lolita in Tehran, this is a story of a family that had the courage to dream impossible dreams and to make them come true against impossible odds.

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About the Author:

Afschineh Latifi was born in Tehran in 1969. She is an attorney and lives in New York City. This is her first book.

From Publishers Weekly:

"Be like a nail!" Latifi's mother would scold when the author cried. These words are a testament to the grit Latifi displays throughout this wonderful memoir. The author was 10 and her sister 11 in May 1979, when their father, a military officer under the Shah, was executed by Khomeini's soldiers. Only 34, their mother was left to raise four young children (she also had two sons) in a newly fundamentalist society hostile to women. At first, the girls "loved putting on the chadors. It felt like Halloween." But when a villager started bidding on marrying Latifi's then 13-year-old sister, their mother knew they had to leave. Yet visas were routinely denied, passports arbitrarily confiscated. Still, Mrs. Latifi managed to take her daughters to Austria, where they attended a convent school (the boys remained in Tehran). The year in Austria was disastrous; the girls unwittingly spent the family's savings trying to overcome their loneliness. America was the next solution; there, the girls lived with relatives in Virginia and learned to take care of each other. Things turned out all right—the family was finally reunited, the children all chose good careers. Unlike many Iranian memoirs, most of this one takes place outside the country. Still, it's a remarkable, resonating tale. Photos. (Apr.)
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