I laughed consistently. Get 'Funny in Farsi' on audio. Author's voice adds layer of enjoyment.
Oct 24, 2009
Delightful and accessible, "Funny in Farsi" by Firoozeh Dumas is a look at 1970s America from the eyes of a girl whose family moved here from Iran. She's all-American, having arrived in the U.S. at age 7. I laughed consistently. No doubt it helped that I, too, recall those very same 1970s.
The best part for me might be the goodness at the core of her being. She doesn't actually write much about herself -- even when she's a key actor in the scene, her narrative is more about the reactions and behaviors of those around her. But you get the sense of someone whom you'd absolutely want to know as a friend, neighbor, sister, cousin, what-have-you.
I highly recommend the audio version over the written version. Firoozeh's voice adds an extra level of enjoyment. I can imagine Disney or Pixar picking her up as an actor for an animated movie. I also listened to her other book, "Laughing Without an Accent," and recommend it just as much. In fact, I can't remember which title goes with which story. But it's all related and it's all good.
I believe these came out not long after 9/11 and the world particularly needed a Middle Easterner it could unequivocally love. Firoozeh is that girl. I suspect Random House picked her up as an unknown author not just because her books are good (and they are!) but because marketing would be easy given the heightened interest in Islam and Firoozeh's counterpoint version of it.
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