Saturday, November 12, 2011


Annotation: Marji’s autobiography about growing up in as a privileged and precocious Iranian girl during the Islamic Revolution and subsequent war with Iraq is told through a haunting and irreverent graphic novel.

Book Talk:

Little Marji remembers her life before and after veils came to Iran.

It’s hard at first for her to figure out what she thinks of all the political changes swirling around her.
“I really didn’t know what to think about the veil. Deep down I was very religious but as a family we were very modern and avant-garde.”

Marji had believed she could be a prophet and imagined how she might solve all of her family’s problems!

But as she grew, she learned more about the history of her homeland and her father taught her about the “2,500 years of tyranny and submission” of her people.

Marji’s parents begin to share their political ideas with her and she is fascinated by a comic book about Marxism. This is just in time because a revolution in Iran begins to gain steam. Marji’s parents demonstrate every day and she’s desperate to join them, but the revolution grows increasingly violent.

Marji’s parents decide to share a family secret with her, the kind of secret that changes everything she though about her family and their role in Iranian society.

This secret opens up Marji’s eyes to harsher realities than she ever could have imagined about what life has been like in Iran for people who have openly challenged the Monarchy. And when the revolution finally succeeds, Marji meets family and friends who suffered unthinkable torture in prison for speaking and acting out about their beliefs.

But the happy reunions and celebrations are premature; the revolution has lead to religious extremists seizing power and life for Marji, her family, and friends grows more dangerous than ever. She has always relied on her special relationship with god, but with terror and fear all around her, which she can no longer ignore, Marji’s faith crumbles.

And that is just the beginning of Marji’s story! Read the graphic novel of her autobiography to learn about the ways her life changes even more once war breaks out, how her family struggles to cling to hope and persist with their normal lives, despite the world falling apart all around them, and especially how Marji finds creative ways to resist oppression, as only teenagers can, through humor, attitude and pop, punk and rock music!

Once you've read Persepolis, I guarantee you'll want to get your hands on Persepolis 2, which picks Marji's story right back up and chronicles her teenage experiences abroad!

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Can't get enough Persepolis?! Check out the trailer for the award-winning feature film based on both books!

"Persepolis Trailer" Online Posting. YouTube, 20 November 2007. Web. 29 November 2011. 

  • 2001: Angoulême Coup de Coeur Award for Persepolis
  • 2004 ALA Alex Award
  • YALSA Best Books for Young Adults
  • Booklist Editor's Choice for Young Adults
  • New York Public Library Books for the Teen Age
  • School Library Journal Adult Books for Young Adults
Satrapi, Marjane. Persepolis:The Story of a Childhood. Trans. Mattias Ripa and Blake Ferris. New York: Pantheon-Random, 2003. Print.

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