Thirty years after the Iranian Islamic revolution comes a new novel, My Persian Girl, which describes the momentous events in 1979 through the eyes of an Englishman, involved in a dangerous relationship with the wife of one of the Shah of Iran’s senior secret police officers
Swirling unseen currents of religious, ethnic and social tensions lie under the surface of Iran’s booming capital, Tehran, in 1978 when unsuspecting Englishman, James Harding, arrives to take up a new job.
James eventually meets up again with Shahnaz, a former close girlfriend, who he has not seen for ten years when she was the sister of a fellow engineering student in London.
Shahnaz is now married to one of the rising stars of the Shah’s notorious secret police, Savak.
Assassinations in Paris and Iraq, demonstrations by millions of people, and the slaughter of protestors culminate in the fall of the Shah, the arrival of Ayatollah Khomeni, and the arrest of Shahnaz’s husband.
The revolution forces the fates of James and Shahnaz together as they battle to survive hatred and betrayal.
My Persian Girl is the first novel of author Jonathan Rush who experienced at first hand the Iranian Revolution. According to Jonathan Rush: “I always knew that I would write a book about the incredible scenes I witnessed in Tehran in 1979. I just didn’t know it would take thirty years. When I eventually got round to writing, I decided to describe the relationship between three people, hoping I could convey in an easy to understand way the explosive politics of Iran. Many of the issues I include such as nuclear weapons, the tension between moderates and extremists, Israel, and Western involvement in the Middle East are just as topical today.”
What some reviewers have said:
“Imagine Gone with the Wind mixed with Casablanca and you’ll get a feel for My Persian Girl’s drama and excitement”. Mark Bolland, London’s Evening Standard and former press adviser to the UK’s Prince Charles.
“Behind the romance, My Persian Girl describes in everyday language some of the major issues challenging the Middle East,” Stephen Cole, Al Jazeera TV news anchor.
“The impact on us all of the world’s first major Islamic revolution, vividly described by someone who was there”, Elaine Thomas, BBC World Service producer.
“I was moved by the love and bravery of Shahnaz and James as they battle together through violence and intrigue in this compelling story of passion and politics,” Sharon Kendrick author of The Sheikh’s English Bride, Mills & Boon.
“An exciting mix of love, betrayal and Iranian politics, particularly relevant today”, Guy Black, former UK Conservative Party communications chief and director of the Press Complaints Commission.