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Laughing Without an Accent: Adventures of an Iranian American, at Home and Abroad Hardcover – Bargain Price, April 29, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 226 pages
  • Publisher: Villard (April 29, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345499565
  • ASIN: B002KAOS2E
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,707,621 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Dumas’ builds on her first memoir, Funny in Farsi (2003), offering more amusing tales from her life in this follow-up. Like her first outing, her latest is a collection of anecdotes from different points in her life: stories from her youth in Iran mix with memories of her experiences as a wife, mother, and author. Dumas’ parents remain a big influence in her life, whether she’s dealing with her mother’s frequent and sometimes, in the case of one bright red comforter, unsightly gifts, or trying to understand her father and his brothers’ fixation on The Price Is Right. In one of the funniest chapters, Dumas recalls the time she and her kids decided to try to sell a potato shaped like a cross on eBay, hoping to make a whopping sixty grand. There’s such warmth to Dumas’ writing that it invites the reader to pull up a seat at her table and smile right along with her at the quirks of her family and Iranians and Americans in general. --Kristine Huntley

Review

Advance praise for Laughing Without an Accent

"Dumas builds on her first memoir, Funny in Farsi (2003), offering more amusing tales from her life in this follow-up. Like her first outing, her latest is a collection of anecdotes from different points in her life: stories from her youth in Iran mix with memories of her experiences as a wife, mother, and author. Dumas’ parents remain a big influence in her life, whether she’s dealing with her mother’s frequent and sometimes, in the case of one bright red comforter, unsightly gifts, or trying to understand her father and his brothers’ fixation on The Price Is Right. In one of the funniest chapters, Dumas recalls the time she and her kids decided to try to sell a potato shaped like a cross on eBay, hoping to make a whopping sixty grand. There’s such warmth to Dumas’ writing that it invites the reader to pull up a seat at her table and smile right along with her at the quirks of her family and Iranians and Americans in general." - Booklist

“These stories, like everything Firoozeh Dumas writes, are charming, highly amusing vignettes of family life. Dumas is one of those rare people–a naturally gifted storyteller.”
–Alexander McCall Smith

Praise for Funny in Farsi

“What’s charming beyond the humor of this memoir is that it remains affectionate even in the weakest, most tenuous moments for the culture. It’s the brilliance of true sophistication at work.”
–Los Angeles Times Book Review

“Remarkable tales of family resilience told with wry humor shorn of sentimentality.”
–San Francisco Chronicle

“The book brings us closer to discovering what it means to be an American.”
–San Jose Mercury News

More About the Author

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Customer Reviews

I laughed out loud while reading the book.
Sara
Dumas has a natural, effortless sense of humor that always makes her books go very quickly.
WingsandRings
We often joke about things that happen and remind us of that book.
Jason the Thinker

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By SwissMary on May 30, 2008
Format: Hardcover
As an expatriate like Firoozeh Dumas, but not Iranian and in my case living in Europe, I was thrilled to hear that Firoozeh had written another memoir.
Laughing Without An Accent continues to delight and amuse, much like her earlier book Funny In Farsi. Each of the stories seem to somehow touch the heart and can connect with people of any culture. She tells her stories about her family with wit and affection.
Many of my friends live outside of the country they were born in. All found Funny In Farsi to be right on the mark and they could really relate to the situations and family issues in the book.
If you're reading Laughing Without An Accent as you relax on vacation, you should know that people will constantly be asking what you're reading that's so funny.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Garry Somers - Editor on May 9, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Got this for my wife, peeked at it, and was hooked. Dumas' family is MY family, only from somewhere else. I have uncles and aunts that are loopy (but whom I love), and sisters that I turn to when my parents do something crazy. No, there's no rocket science here - that we all tend to drive each other to distraction occasionally, and often in ways that are funny in retrospect, but a book doesn't have to be rocket science to have value and be something good and worthwhile. I was surprised by how much this book moved me, and that is rare. I liked it so much I contacted the author for an interview in The Blotter Magazine ([...]
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Seattleman on May 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover
If you liked Funny in Farsi, then you will love this book.

Another collection of short stories with insightful and funny observations.

My favorite is the last chapter, where she tells the story of where she met one of the people that was taken hostage in the US embassy in Tehran years ago.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Javad H. Zadeh on May 28, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Laughing Without an Accent, By Firoozeh Dumas

Reading Laughing Without an Accent recently written by Firoozeh Dumas is the most entertaining thing I can think of. I have laughed and cried many times reading each chapter of this book. The chapter I laughed and cried most when reading it is "Seyyed Abdullah Jazayeri", which I think is for this same reason.

The book has stories from early 60's to the present time, ranging geographically over Iran, Europe and America. The reader is taken to restaurants with exotic foods, funeral ceremonies that celebrate life, homes with maids that climb up trees instead of attending to their duties or fall in love and get married to pregnant maids. It ends with a beautiful story of reconciliation; the friendship of the author with a former hostage.

It is a well written book, with few minor typos. I have read the book two times, so far, and have enjoyed it more the second time. Such a wonderful book deserves to be read many times. Her beautiful stories can be enjoyed again and again. The reader will really appreciate all the wonderful effects Firoozeh's writing has, as a bridge builder, in introducing the Iranian culture not only to Americans but also to the world.

I recommended her first book Funny in Farsi to all friends and relatives and gave at least half a dozen copies to some of them as gifts. They all loved it and said that by reading it they died from laughing. Now, it is her second book, "Laughing Without an Accent", truly a masterpiece, that the readers should read and enjoy much more than the first.

Javad H. Zadeh, Ph.D.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Jason the Thinker on May 27, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I learned about Funni in Farsi when my children had to read the book as part of their school work in Junior High School. They laughed so much, at first I thought they were playing a prank on me. But when Mom and I read it too, we knew we had found something special. This was the only book that the whole family enjoyed reading and re-reading together. We often joke about things that happen and remind us of that book.

So it was with great anticipation when we got Ms. Dumas' new book "Laughing without an accent". This book too is a masterpiece. We all loved it and we were fighting about who should be reading it at any time. Ms. Dumas, you have brought great joy and understanding to our family and we thank you for it.

I recommend this book to all. It is easy reading, enjoyable, and awakens something deep inside you about our humanity. Way to go Ms. Dumas.

We can't wait for the next book!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By David Paulson on June 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I just purchased this book and read it while commuting on the NY subway. It made my commuting experience a pleasure.

Both books are very human and also very funny. Almost every paragraph has a surprise. She is finely attuned to the differences between Iranian and American culture. She does succeed in having us "laugh with her." I have read both of her books and highly recommend them.

I have zero sympathy with the Iranian regime, but we do need more "cultural ambassadors" like Ms. Dumas who can maintain perspective and a sense of humor, and fewer Reading Lolita in Tehran's.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Armchair Interviews on July 15, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Humor isn't usually the first thing that comes to mind when talking about Iranian Americans, but Firoozeh Dumas may just change that! Each vignette highlights the craziness both of her family and of various culture: American, Iranian and French. She writes with such conversational ease, as if telling you a funny story over a cup of tea. Each family member is drawn with clarity, as if you've known them all along. Her family is like a favorite sitcom family - familiar, funny and slightly over the top. The reader can imagine them getting into all kinds of wacky situations and can't wait to tune in for more.

Part of Dumas' great writing skill lies in the simplicity of her descriptions. She is able to set a scene with few words, but provide such keen observation that she cuts right to humor of the moment. She illuminates the humor of cultures and personalities with lightheartedness and respect. She seems to find idiosyncrasies to be both precious and maddening. She clearly loves her family very much, and is able expose the absurdity of their everyday lives. Her command of humor makes even the most mundane of subjects like oversized desks, 10 lb. bags of rice and the "Midnight Chocolate Buffet" on a cruise, a cause for chuckles.

Laughing Without an Accent has plenty of laugh-out-loud moments for readers of any accent. Dumas' keen observations expose the silliness of herself and those around her with an endearing grace and genuineness, causing the reader to embrace her every word and yearn for just one more story.

Armchair Interviews says: Humor lies all around this talented writer.
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