Wednesday, October 12, 2011

by Roya Hakakian

In 1992, on a beautiful autumn evening in Berlin, eight men who were members of an Iranian and Kurdish opposition group gathered for dinner at a small restaurant. This event was something that they had all looked forward to for days. It would be short-lived. No sooner had they started eating, when two men walked in and shot twenty-six bullets in two rounds. There would be four survivors.
The next day began the guessing game concerning the perpetrators. It would not take long for the federal prosecutor to focus in on the regime of Iran. Since 1980, one year after Khomeini rose to power, a list was created for "enemies of Islam." Anybody who was considered an opponent: artists, writers, intellectuals, political activists were silenced, thrown in prison or executed. A total of five hundred people were being hunted down all over the world.
The eventual trial would last four years and the verdict caused quite a shake-up.
The book is superb with both riveting and beautiful writing. I was captivated from just reading the first page. Author Roya Hakakian is a Persian poet and her previous book, a memoir, "Journey To The Land Of No" is gorgeous and lyrical. So, she obviously knows how to dazzle the senses.
Not to be missed.
Very highly recommended.