Most family legacies are complicated, but Kimiâ Sadr's legacy is especially intricate. A master storyteller, Djavadi unravels Kimiâ's origin with family lore that has been passed down for generations, beginning with her Persian great grandfather in 1896. Each thread of the family's story builds the foundation for the family's harrowing escape to France during the Iranian Revolution. This book is a triumph and humanizes the history of a culture that many have ignored. Highly recommend.— Rachel Watkins
Disoriental is a rich tapestry of a novel, detailing the isolation and rebirth found in a life lived in exile. Djavadi's lyrical yet conversational voice is perfectly conveyed in Kover's translation, and she deftly weaves together the threads of Kimiâ's life with events in Iranian history.— Hannah DeCamp
WINNER 2019 ALBERTINE PRIZE
WINNER 2019 LAMBDA LITERARY AWARD
FINALIST 2018 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD
FINALIST 2019 CLMP FIRECRACKER AWARD
FINALIST 2019 BEST TRANSLATED BOOK AWARD
WINNER LE PRIX DU ROMAN NEWS
WINNER STYLE PRIZE
WINNER 2016 LIRE BEST DEBUT NOVEL
WINNER LA PORTE DOR E PRIZE
ONE OF THE GLOBE & MAIL'S BEST BOOKS OF 2018
In this high-spirited, kaleidoscopic story, key moments of Iranian history, politics, and culture punctuate stories of family drama and triumph.
Kimi Sadr fled Iran at the age of ten in the company of her mother and sisters to join her father in France. Now twenty-five and facing the future she has built for herself as well as the prospect of a new generation, Kimi is inundated by her own memories and the stories of her ancestors, which come to her in unstoppable, uncontainable waves. In the waiting room of a Parisian fertility clinic, generations of flamboyant Sadrs return to her, including her formidable great-grandfather Montazemolmolk, with his harem of fifty-two wives, and her parents, Darius and Sara, stalwart opponents of each regime that befalls them.
It is Kimi herself--punk-rock aficionado, storyteller extraordinaire, a Scheherazade of our time, and above all a modern woman divided between family traditions and her own "disorientalization"--who forms the heart of this bestselling and beloved novel.