Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi
My Thoughts: 4/5 Stars
Marjane Satrapi is a young girl growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. Through simple black-and-white comic art, Satrapi tells her story of the upheaval of politics in Iran and the effects of the war with Iraq.
Satrapi’s memoir is delivered with authentic naivety of a child searching to understand her world and her place in it. (“I wanted to be justice, love and the wrath of God all in one.”) Through her exploration, she struggles to reconcile what she learns in school and on the news in an unfree government with what she learns from her politically active and radical family. Her grappling makes the complicated history and politics of Iran accessible. Childish perspectives (“With this first cigarette, I kissed childhood goodbye. Now I was a grown-up.”) mixed with heartbreaking stories of living in a politically-repressed nation mold Satrapi into a character not easily forgotten.
The expressive, simple art moves a story that was sometimes heavy on explanation and thick with details. A substantial and necessary work that sticks with you long after you’ve set it down.
Note: This review is part of my participation in Yalsa’s 2017 Hub reading challenge. It is my first of 25 reviews.
- Middle East understanding
- Graphic novel
- Coming of age
- Teen and mature tween readers
- Increase acceptance and understanding