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Tehran, Lipstick and Loopholes Paperback – October 1, 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Virago UK; Reprint edition (October 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844085147
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844085149
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,115,643 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

It seemed like such a simple thing. The author, an Iranian living in Paris, had returned to Tehran for a holiday. Now she’s ready to go home; she just needs to renew her Iranian passport, a process that is usually fairly routine. Told over the space of slightly more than a week, the story recounts Tajadod’s rather mind-bogglingly circuitous odyssey to get the paperwork done. Tajadod structures the book like a novel, introducing us to a number of peculiar and interesting characters (who are, we must assume, more or less as they actually are), telling us the story of a hapless traveler simply trying to get home. Adroitly translated from the original French, the book offers readers a detailed and fascinating look at daily life in Tehran—a place that, despite our Western sense of its radical difference, seems quite familiar in many ways. It’s not really a travel memoir; more of an I-want-to-travel memoir. --David Pitt

Review

"[Tehran, Lipstick and Loopholes] offers readers a detailed and fascinating look at daily life in Tehran." —Booklist Online

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Feanor on March 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
It's an affectionate and exasperated portrayal of life in Iran, concentrating mainly on the hoops an Iranian citizen needs to jump through to get anything done out of the notoriously corrupt bureaucracy. It's witty, it is cultured - Nahal Tajadod is well acquainted with the artists and filmmakers and litterateurs of Iran - and the way networking works in the Middle-East, it's no wonder that she uses all their contacts to forward her agenda. Why does this diminish the work? It's the same in many parts of Europe as well - Italy, anyone? There's no way of telling which contacts will come up trumps, especially when relationships between the public and the bureaucracy are so fluid and fraught. Combined with the famed Iranian politesse, it's difficult to withdraw from networking dead-ends without causing immense offence, and much of the memoir describes the tricks Tajadod has to come up with to assuage hurt feelings or persuade new contacts to help out. Through it all, she bemoans the faults of fundamentalism and the rigidity of the old guard. This is not a serious work by any means on the state of modern Iran, but it is perceptive enough, and written from the perspective of an upper-class woman. Surely all viewpoints are valuable?
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By C.B. on April 9, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
A great author and I would definitely read other books by her. However, I did not feel this book was very eventful. Interesting? Yes. Informative? Yes. But after 4 years in Dubai, I find many of the problems and events very common to the Middle East. Still a good book.
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Tehran, Lipstick and Loopholes
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