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on 20 April 2003
Having lived in Iran almost twenty years ago, this book left me with a lump in my throat. Wearing captures the beauty of Iran,( a country that your average Western reader associates only with revolution and terrorism )the hospitality of its people and the very essence of its soul. She takes you on the journey with her, allowing you the reader to taste and breath the air she breathes. Her humour throughout never negates the reality. Her depictions true to life. Having read many books on Iran, it was a joy to finally read an untainted account of a glorious country and her beautiful people. Highly recommended!
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on 28 May 2003
It's hard to imagine a country such as Iran when we are informed in the media of only the negative aspects of the country.
Alison Wearing has an enviable, perceptive style of writing. Without pandering to pointless stereotypes and judgements, she effortlessly focuses on the everyday people of the country; their extraordinary generosity and intelligence.
It's a genuinely funny book, with wonderful descriptions and managing to avoid being cheesy.
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on 6 May 2002
Having read the few autobiographical /fictional works on the people of Iran and Persia I could find, finally, this one captures the innate beauty of the people. Thankfully also, the book mentions "Not without my daughter" in a couple of places and attempts to undo some of the damage inflicted therein simply by recounting some of the Canadian couple's chance and momentary encouters. The style is quite lazy and gently washes over you, - it is a beautiful read and brought tears to my eyes on many occasions.
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on 8 April 2002
This has been fascinating to read in light of all the negative propaganda we in the UK have been hearing about Islam. Honeymoon in Purdah is lovely because Wearing lets the people she meets on her journey speak for themselves about their lives and beliefs. Wearing's editorial comments about her own experience is almost secondary - a nice change from most travel books.
The book transitions nicely from serious to hilarious and I cannot tell you how many times I've awakened my poor husband because I had to stay up that extra hour or two to find what happens next, only to burst out into uncontrolled laughter in the wee hours of the night.
This is a book I would buy for my friends. Superb.
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on 11 March 2002
Having married an Iranian nearly ten years ago, I have recently come back from my first visit to Iran. I had an absolutely wonderful time and many of my experiences were similar to those of Alison Wearing. This book brought tears to my eyes, in many places she could have been describing people I have met. I feel homesick for Iran because of the way I was treated there, after reading this book it has just brought it all back. It is a very good book, that describes the beauty of Iran perfectly, both it's land and it's people.
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on 15 December 2009
An interesting story with a good twist part way through. It gives you a great insight into life in Iran, without the sensationalist and fanatical "spin" that seems to go hand-in-hand with any news reporting about Iran. The Iranian people are portrayed as generous, hospitable and kind natured, exactly like all the lovely Iranians I've ever met. The author draws a beautiful picture of the landscapes and scenery and allows us to enjoy the journey with her and her travel companion. I read this in a weekend.
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on 7 December 2012
With apologies to the author, I got this book second-hand, having long been fascinated by Iran. At first I wasn't sure about her writing style. And its incomplete sentences. Not to mention the use of present tense. But then I got beyond all that and became taken with the extraordinary warmth, generosity and kindness of the Iranian people. It was interesting how so many men asked her if she enjoyed wearing the chador, as if it was an honour and a privilege rather than the prison we all assume it to be. I especially loved the Americanised opium dealer who tells her: "It's one of those things about people here...Being like a good, real generous person is like more important than anything, definitely more important than making money...I kinda like that."

A fascinating insight into a misunderstood country and its people.
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on 11 January 2012
This is an interesting travelogue by a Canadian lady who has to have "husband" (I won't spoil the plot here!) to travel to Iran where, she says, you can not share a hotel room if you are not married. In my personal experience (as of 2003), this is true for Iranians, atleast officially, but not for foreigners.

Be that as it may, Wearing offers a good glimpse of everyday life in Iran, meets a lot of people and talks to them, so this is a useful travelogue to meet, through her, parts of the Iranian society one is unlikely to hear about from abroad. Iranian hospitality and friendliness permeate this book, and I was able to verify this myself. Same for the rudeness of some officials in uniform. All is all an entertaining account, though at times the book loses its pace and I found myself putting it down.
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on 1 November 2001
Alison Wearing's writing style is like having pictures painted and photographs conjured up in your mind. She leads you through her journey with her as if you were physically by her side. Her courage, inquisitiveness, tolerance and acceptance of this mysterious country and it's people almost had me booking my own ticket and buying a chaador myself. Funny, sad, amazing and a truly good read.
I can't wait to hear where she has travelled next!
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on 7 August 2004
Being persian myself I found this book to take rather a patronising view of Iran and the persian people. The author writes as though she has no real grasp of Iran's history making massive assuptions over it. It is like only sees Iran as a quaint country with quaint little people who have quaint little ways!
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