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Veil of Roses Paperback – December 26, 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; 9th ptg thus edition (December 26, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553383884
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553383881
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.7 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #327,409 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this pat but sweet attempt at FOB (fresh off the boat) chick lit, Tamila Soroush, a 27-year-old Iranian woman, flies to Tucson, Ariz., to stay with her older sister, Maryam (whom she hasn't seen in 15 years), and Maryam's orthopedic surgeon husband, Ardishir. Tami is there for a three-month stay, courtesy of a visa arranged by her loving parents, who want her to marry an Iranian with American citizenship and stay in the States. Tami concurs with this plan: "being married is a small price to pay if I can stay in the land of Opportunity." But on her way to her ESL class, Tami meets Ike, an affable American working at Starbucks while he raises money to open his own chain of coffee shops. Potential Iranian fiancé setups move forward while Tami and Ike's mutual feelings deepen. As she nears the end of her visa, Tami faces some tough choices. The plot is disposable and the agenda transparent, but watching Tami find her voice through such small comforts as being able to sit alone in a house, walk to school unescorted or buy lingerie with her sister will leave readers rooting for her. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Fitzgerald's unique take on the increasingly popular immigrant saga juxtaposes an introspective look into the repressive lifestyle experienced by Tamila Soroush, 27, in Iran with the nearly unreal freedom she finds while in Tucson on a three-month visa. Sent by her parents in the hope that she can "wake up her luck" and stay in America like her older sister, Tami has three months to find a husband and avoid returning to Iran. One of the Iranian suitors her sister and brother-in-law have lined up turns out to be obsessive-compulsive; the second is a gay control freak. Beyond these awkward matchmaking scenes, Tami forges her own strong friendships with the students in her ESL class, including Nadia, a Russian refugee abused by her bigoted husband, and the outrageously provocative Eva, who introduces Tami to country line dancing. Tami also captures the heart of Ike, a Starbucks server who encourages her pursuit of photography and sends her flowers, despite her sister's objections. A fun, romantic, and thought-provoking debut novel from a promising author. Deborah Donovan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Customer Reviews

Iran is not afghanistan.
N. -. Rasson
The main characters are believable and endearing.
Heather S. Griffith
This is a great book, Easy read.
Katie

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By L. Bentley on February 12, 2007
Format: Paperback
This author has a genuine voice that helps her characters be felt and understood. It takes a real talent for an author to allow her characters to be deep and fully formed. I appreciated reading a book with depth! The romance was an unexpected and fun twist. The details on the lifestyle and thinking of an Iranian woman was very enlightening to me as an American woman. I read this book quickly as it captured my attention and I needed to know what was going to happen with the characters. :)
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth Coonan on December 28, 2006
Format: Paperback
I bought this book because it looked interesting. I had no idea what a powerful read it would be. I bought it and finished it in one day. It makes us as women really look at all the freedoms we have and how easy it is to take it all for granted. It is written in a way that just grabs you and wraps you into the story, you can feel Tami's emotions her terror, her excitement and her sadness. I would recomend this book to anyone who wants a better understanding of a cultrue that most americans know nothing about. It sheds light on some traditions that we would find horrible and opressive and helps us better understand why these women deal with them and how. This book was great!
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Allyn on March 9, 2007
Format: Paperback
Twenty-seven-year-old Tami faces a bleak future in her native Iran. Deprived of basic freedoms and confined to living with her parents until marriage, she fears that she will become as listless and depressed as her mother. Then a surprise birthday present comes from her parents-a tourist visa that will give Tami a chance to stay in America for a short time with her sister Maryam. Living permanently in America will only happen if Tami, with the help of Maryam and her husband, can manage to marry a "suitable" Iranian man.

Yes, Laura Fitzgerald's debut novel follows an old format. From the minute Tami meets handsome, charismatic Starbucks worker Ike on the way to her English class, readers will begin to have strong suspicions about future plot developments. Yet there are enough other pluses about the novel that will keep reading enjoyable.

Tami's wonder at all things American (everything from dealing with free samples to relishing life without her customary veil) adds freshness to the book, and her intelligence and determination to truly find love makes her a fitting heroine. As for her suitors-an outwardly successful Iranian with obsessive compulsive disorder and another fellow countryman who turns out to be different than anyone imagined-they add that kind of drama that makes one desparate to see how the plot "tangles" are resolved. Other supporting characters, like Tami's fellow classmates and her loving but controlling sister, add interest and texture to the story, even if they occasionally seem stereotypical.

This is a book that you can't help but enjoy, even if its somewhat simple and predictable nature means that it maybe deserves about 3.8 stars. By time you're finished inwardly cheering for Tami and falling in love with the deliciously romantic Ike, you'll find it hard to complain about this generally inspiring remix of the "immigrant story."
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22 of 29 people found the following review helpful By N. -. Rasson on May 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book may be an interesting read if you have little or no knowledge about iranian culture, but if you know the culture well you can easily see that the author has no understanding of the culture and it's people. For startes the book is full of inaccuracies. For startes in one part of the book Tami (the main character) talks about how women in iran do not see male doctors. That is completely innacurate. Iran is not afghanistan. I think the author mixed up the Taliban regime with Iran. Though I am no fan of the iranian government, I don't think you need to portray Iran as a third world country either. Women in iran do go to male doctors!! The book also portrays Iranian as people that get married after a few dates. Though this may be true in some traditional and religious families in iran, again this is not the case with many. Even with the religious government and all it's restrictions many iranians have boyfriends and girlfriends, and people often date (though not publically) before getting married. All the iranians that I know here in America date before they get married. Overall, I think the author only has a limited knowledge of the culture, and it comes through and through in the book. If you want a more authentic understanding of the culture read wedding song, or funny in farsi.
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24 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Sepand Siassi on October 11, 2007
Format: Paperback
This was one of the most painful books I've ever read--or at least attempted to read. From page 7 onwards I had an urge to return the book, but I managed to pull through all the way to the middle mark.

What's so painful about this book - ***and I'm glad to hear this echoed in reviews done by those who have been to Iran*** - is that the author has the most stereotypical image of Iran and Iranian women. From the very beginning we learn that the main character of the story comes from a good and educated background. Her parents had met one another while studying in the U.S. She seems to come from a middle-class and relatively well-off family. Yet (and here's the painful part) everything that she does in the book is a description of a working class, non-educated, very religious and rural woman, from the way she avoids eye contact with men to the way both her and her sister get married based on practicality (how deep the husband's pocket is, U.S. citizenship, and so forth). Unfortunately, the book's description of its protagonist completely misses the mark on how Iranian women with a decent education from a middle and higher income families live and behave.

Like many others, Laura Fitzgerald has taken advantage of an increased interest in the US on Iranian topics--be it politics or social issues--due the current status of US-Iranian relations. She has allowed herself--I think she finds this justified solely based on her marriage to an Iranian-American--to draw what she thinks describes the life and thoughts of an average Iranian woman both in Iran and in the US.
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