Children of the Jacaranda Tree eBook î of the

Children of the Jacaranda Tree eBook î of the


    Children of the Jacaranda Tree eBook î of the birth to her daughter in captivity One day the guards simply take her child from her Parisa yearns for her tiny son, growing up a few miles away but completely out of reach And Firoozeh, broken by cruelty, has turned her back on everything she was fighting forBut even in the most desolate places hope can take root."/>
  • Kindle Edition
  • 285 pages
  • Children of the Jacaranda Tree
  • Sahar Delijani
  • 24 March 2019

10 thoughts on “Children of the Jacaranda Tree

  1. Jane Jane says:

    The idea for this book is powerful The story is about the children of those who were jailed in Iran during the revolution of the 1980 s The author herself was born in a prison in Teheran Her uncle was executed after a long prison stay I think that perhaps the author is too close to the events to render them as fiction I did love the story of the aunt who raises her sisters children She fell in love, but gave up this love, who was fleeing the country, in order to stay and take care of thes The idea for this book is powerful The story is about the children of those who were jailed in Iran during the revolution of the 1980 s The author herself was born in a prison in Teheran Her uncle was executed after a long prison stay I think that perhaps the author is too close to the events to render them as fiction I did love the story of the aunt who raises her sisters children She fell in love, but gave up this love, who was fleeing the country, in order to stay and take care of these nieces and a nephewbut as I kept reading all of the children she had sacrificed her life for began to blend together By trying to tell so many stories of so many children who have grown up under the cloud of war, and who have been separated for long periods from their parents, the novel loses focus for me The writing itself feels overwrought A character is gripped with infinite grief and loneliness when she shares the news of her grandmother s death.A cardboard box arrives in Italy It smells of dust and memory This is the smell of Iran, one character says.When this same character is ready to leave Italy, her husband Valerio is quiet Her grief and fury set alight a sense of spiritual detachment from the world She felt estranged from the very air she breathed She knew Valerio suffered as his attempts to bring her back to his world of diurnal struggle and nocturnal relax bounced off the misty wall of her detachment I had tried to skim because I think the truth of the stories is important But finally, the writing felt so awkward and trite that I stopped


  2. Kim Kim says:

    I wanted to read this novel from almost the moment I knew of its existence The author was born in Tehran s Evin Prison in 1983, where her mother was a political prisoner The work explores the life of Iranian political prisoners in the 1980s, the mass killing of leftist prisoners in 1988, the ongoing impact of imprisonment on relationships between former prisoners and their children and the cycle of dissent and oppression in Iran, with its most recent manifestation in the mass protests after th I wanted to read this novel from almost the moment I knew of its existence The author was born in Tehran s Evin Prison in 1983, where her mother was a political prisoner The work explores the life of Iranian political prisoners in the 1980s, the mass killing of leftist prisoners in 1988, the ongoing impact of imprisonment on relationships between former prisoners and their children and the cycle of dissent and oppression in Iran, with its most recent manifestation in the mass protests after the 2009 presidential election The narrative shifts back and forward in place and time and deals with a number of characters, all of whom are connected in some way to a group of women detained in Evin Prison in 1983 The novel explores some interesting themes As a reader with a long standing interest in Iranian history, society and culture and a familiarity with modern Iranian politics, it should have enthralled me But it didn t Instead, it was profoundly disappointing and I only finished reading it because it was short and because I generally finish books I start Part of the problem with the work is the confusing structure Too many characters are introduced, it s not easy to remember how all of them are related to each other and the work is too short for any of the characters to be developed in a meaningful way While I have no problem in theory with a narrative which shifts back and forward in place and time, in this novel the effect is choppy I suspect that the lack of flow would be an even greater problem for a reader who wasn t familiar with the background to the narrative However, for me the biggest problem is the writing Delijani has potential as a storyteller and writer, but someone needs to tell her to restrain her impulse to use similes to pad out every paragraph Not every action, experience or emotion needs to be compared to something else The overuse of similes is particularly problematic when the images make no sense or are frankly inappropriate An example He had a slightly big head and rice tray eyes that flashed back at his surroundings like a fawn on the run As it happens, I know what a rice tray looks like and while I haven t seen a fawn on the run, there can t be any similarity between the two.Another animal themed example She watches the reflections of the lights on the window, like eyes of sick pigeons staring.Huh And what does this mean Inside, it was if her heart had been soaked in a pond of freezing light A sexual simile, which does not seem particularly apt It was the most silent lovemaking they d ever had, like the sky had landed on them Here s another unfortunate sexual image, describing a couple having a post coital nap And they fell asleep in the scent of each other s bodies, serene , like children content, collapsing after a long day at the beach I highlighted dozens of these strange, inappropriate or just plain nonsensical similes and the odd inane metaphor When the language is so distractingly bad, getting lost in the story becomes impossible I really hope that Delijani s ability as a writer improves, because she has something to say There were times when her writing moved me for example, her description of a child being removed from her prisoner mother, the execution of another prisoner and the reaction of an Iranian expatriate who observed the events of 2009 on her computer screen However, whatever Deljani has to say, in this novel she has not said it well If and when she writes another novel, I ll be in no hurry to read it


  3. Marina Nemat Marina Nemat says:

    Children of the Jacaranda Tree is a novel, a work of fiction, but it is based on the experiences of its author, Sahar Delijani, and her parents, who were imprisoned in Evin, a prison in Tehran, Iran, in the 80s Thankfully, all survived the experience Ms Delijani was born in Evin in 1983, and, from what I could gather, spent a few months as an infant in the prison with her mother Ms Delijani has no memory of Evin, and, according to a Q A on her website, her description of the prison has orig Children of the Jacaranda Tree is a novel, a work of fiction, but it is based on the experiences of its author, Sahar Delijani, and her parents, who were imprisoned in Evin, a prison in Tehran, Iran, in the 80s Thankfully, all survived the experience Ms Delijani was born in Evin in 1983, and, from what I could gather, spent a few months as an infant in the prison with her mother Ms Delijani has no memory of Evin, and, according to a QA on her website, her description of the prison has originated from her parents, who, like most ex prisoners, were too traumatized to write their own experiences A few books have been published about Evin, but all the ones I had read, except my own, before Children of the Jacaranda Tree had been memoirs written in Farsi and published in small print runs in Europe.In the first chapter of the book, we follow Azar, a pregnant Evin inmate, who seems to be in her mid to late 20s and is in labour It is 1983 She is a married woman and was arrested early in her pregnancy together with her husband, both members of a Marxist, anti regime organization In appalling conditions, two prison guards, one male and one female, drive Azar to a hospital in Tehran, where she delivers a healthy baby girl On page 32, we finally enter Evin with Azar and her baby.The book lost me in the first chapter The picture of Evin that Ms Delijani paints is too vague for someone like me who has spent time there and knows it well the narrative lacks essential information and has too many empty, unexplored spaces For example, when Ms Delijani tells us about Azar s return from the hospital to her cell in the public cellblock, she writes The women prisoners had carried their excitement around with them all day They were restless, barely able to stay put This is the very first sentence in the book that describes Evin and it left me cold In the 80s I was an Evin prisoner from 1982 to 1984 , about 80 to 90 percent of the population of the prison in women s cellblocks were between the ages of 14 and 20 Evin was like high school in hell Yet, in Ms Delijani s narrative, we don t meet any of these young prisoners, who, because of their age, behaved rather differently from their older cellmates The only inmates to whom we are introduced are the older women Evin was and is a huge compound and not everyone has the same experience of it, but there are certain facts, like the average age of Evin inmates in the 80s, which are essential and important and have nothing to do with perspective Thousands of teenagers were tortured and executed in Evin, and we see absolutely no sign of them, as if they never existed Such a big departure from reality cannot be overlooked, not even in a work of fiction.Another example of the lack of detail is when Ms Delijani writes about the thinness of the prisoners and their bony shoulders Yes, we were always terribly hungry in Evin, but paradoxically, most of us did not appear malnourished One of the dominating smells of the prison was that of camphor The very first time I put a cup of tea to my lips soon after my arrival in cellblock 246, I almost spilled it in disgust, but all my cellmates were enthusiastically sipping from their plastic cups, as if they contained the elixir of life Camphor is sometimes used in religious ceremonies, for embalming, and in some creams and lotions, but if ingested in large quantities, it is poisonous One of the side effects of ingesting camphor is fluid retention so that in Evin, even though we were hungry, we gained weight My thin, long face became round in the prison, and almost all my cellmates were the same even though we were suffering from malnourishment, we looked plump and healthy After I was released, my parents told me that during our brief visitations, they were relieved to see that I looked well fed On page 33, Ms Delijani writes, That day, even Firoozeh could not contain her happiness Her usual nervous ranting had come to a halt Everyone in the cell knew Firoozeh had become a Tavaab, a snitch, because she had been able to spend a night with her husband and had received a pillow softer than anyone else s I read on, hoping that Ms Delijani would sayabout a term as complex as tavaab rather than just making a passing, casual reference, but I was disappointed Tavaab is an Arabic word that means repentant, not snitch Evin interrogators and prison authorities brought the word into the prison vocabulary as early as 1981 The vast majority of detainees arriving in Evin are tortured In the 80s, virtually every prisoner except maybe pregnant and breastfeeding women, was beaten and lashed At the age of 16, I was tied to a bare wooden bed, and an interrogator named Hamehd lashed the soles of my feet with a length of cable The distilled, merciless pain reduced me to something I didn t even know could exist I was ready to sell my soul I signed every document they gave me According to the unwritten rules of the prison, breaking under torture meant a prisoner had become a tavaab The interrogators forced broken inmates to confess to the righteousness of the regime, or they would keep on beating them Unmarried girls were in danger of being raped Turning detainees into tavaabs was a cruel project of the authorities of Evin prison in the 80s, and they went to any length to make sure it succeeded Their main goal was to turn the prisoners against each other Therefore not every tavaab was a snitch A few prisoners told on others, but the majority did not Ms Delijani fails to tell us these important details In Children of the Jacaranda Tree, all the characters are either pure good or pure evil Firoozeh is introduced to us in a way that makes her morally indistinguishable from the guards who torture and kill when instead she is their victim.Ms Delijani is her best in the chapters that are not set in Evin These chapters are about life outside the prison and tell the stories of the families of the prisoners This is a world she knows firsthand and understands well, so we get to see and understand it with her I humbly believe that Children of the Jacaranda Tree would have been a much better book if Ms Delijani had done the difficult, daunting task of researching life in Evin prison and reading the works and interviews of its survivors to gain a better understanding of it All memoirs of Evin are not the same, and they certainly do not agree on everything, but each one of them sheds light on a small part of a complex, multilayered puzzle Ms Delijani is a talented writer, but, because of her lack of research, the book falls short of its potential In a QA on her website when asked about the research she put into writing about Evin, Ms Delijani says, I didn t want to talk to too many people so I decided to speak almost exclusively to my parents I wish she had gone the extra mile and had talked tovictims, survivors, and eyewitnesses


  4. Liz Prad Liz Prad says:

    The novel is set in a period when the triumph of the Iranian revolution of 1979 took away freedom rather than broaden it and liberals had to continue protesting, this time against the authoritative conservatism of the Islamic regime To suppress this rebellion, clerics and militia were roped in from the poorer peripheries of the country and they exercised their new found power with an iron fist and sadism all too pleased to snatch away happiness, hopes and rights from the privileged Ayatollah K The novel is set in a period when the triumph of the Iranian revolution of 1979 took away freedom rather than broaden it and liberals had to continue protesting, this time against the authoritative conservatism of the Islamic regime To suppress this rebellion, clerics and militia were roped in from the poorer peripheries of the country and they exercised their new found power with an iron fist and sadism all too pleased to snatch away happiness, hopes and rights from the privileged Ayatollah Khomeini reigned supreme and his propositions were aired and published extensively making him bigger, louder and omnipresent while those that questioned his motives or were not blown away by the propaganda stifled The stories set in the Evin prison are heart rending to say the least The first, of a child birth while behind bars followed by the ruthless confiscation of the infant and the second, of a father who painstakingly makes a bracelet out of date seeds to present his daughter a few weeks before he was executed The author points out that most of those arrested, tortured and executed were too young to be punished for their half formed political ideals The second part of the novel is set in and after the Green movement of Iran in 2009 when thousands poured into the streets to protest against a rigged election One of these stories is about an Iranian immigrant s realization that a difference between the two revolts is that while in 2009, protesters were beaten up and shot at in full public view and under media coverage, the last of those who opposed the Islamic regime in the 1980s were killed in secrecy and buried en masse in an attempt to be erased from the collective memory of the country Sahar Delijani writes about how families of anti revolutionaries coped up with the missing, sentencing and execution of their loved ones over the years Some closed in, buried their sorrows deep within and fled the country while others opened up gradually and shared stories of their losses, fears and torture.Children of the Jacaranda tree is a collection of stories bound together by the central theme of longing for freedom and love for family The perspectives, idealism, distressed yet hopeful characters and the evocative narratives are phenomenal An unforgettable reading experience


  5. Trish Trish says:

    On the eve of the 2013 presidential election in Iran, Shahar Delijani invites us to look at what past elections have meant for three generations rooted in post revolutionary Tehran from 1983 to present day This is a novel that reads like a memoir, tracing the experiences and thoughts of Iran s disenfranchised and dissident population If ever you wondered what it must have been like to be a part of Arab Spring as it played out in massive demonstrations in Tehran, this is one woman s attempt to On the eve of the 2013 presidential election in Iran, Shahar Delijani invites us to look at what past elections have meant for three generations rooted in post revolutionary Tehran from 1983 to present day This is a novel that reads like a memoir, tracing the experiences and thoughts of Iran s disenfranchised and dissident population If ever you wondered what it must have been like to be a part of Arab Spring as it played out in massive demonstrations in Tehran, this is one woman s attempt to share that experience and its roots in Iranian society and its diaspora.From the opening scenes of a prison birth to the later reminiscences of a woman receiving someone else s clothes from prison officials after the death of her husband while in custody, this is inflammatory stuff, heart breaking and heart hardening stuff The effect of events like these on families and personalities is charted and surmised, each generation seemingly adding to the ranks of the disaffected By this count the opposition to the government in Tehran will never go away but instead grows daily Conversations among the psychologically traumatized characters in this novel echo what was heard in Beijing after the Tiananmen Square demonstrations This kind of disaffection isn t going to evaporate without boiling first.I am not as familiar with customs in the Middle East as I am with those in Asia, so I find the fictional personal interactions recorded here fascinating, supposing that this records faithfully a middling wealthy and cosmopolitan slice of Iranian society And, though it doesn t necessarily make good novelistic technique, I enjoyed reading of young male female relationships I am struck with the conservatism on one hand and the liberality on the other This is Delijani s debut novel, and while she still has room to grow as a novelist, this book illustrates storytelling I don t think the two things are necessarily the same I never felt involved in this story, but watched from a distance the interactions between characters Surely there are overlaps in customs, feelings, and intentions, especially among Iranians displaced to the West, and yet I felt a great distance This could be age hers or mine or the characters , or it could be one of the stages of cultural familiarity Geert Hofstede, Dutch guru on the dimensions of culture, once posited that people go through stages of recognition when encountering another culture At first, without our own cultural markers, we feel disoriented and distant, as though we are different from them Gradually, as we becomefamiliar and discover that these are humans, too, we begin to think we are all the same As familiarity grows into deep knowledge, we move back to we really are different I think I am still at Stage 1 with Iran


  6. Christoph Fischer Christoph Fischer says:

    Children of the Jacaranda Tree by Sahar Deljani is a beautifully told selection of interwoven stories about people in Iran between 1983 and 2011.The first story tells the experience of a pregnant woman who has been arrested and gives birth in prison She and her fellow inmates become temporarily enchanted by the arrival of the child, which sadly is then taken away from them.The description of the political situation and religious oppression after the revolution in Iran is greatly woven into th Children of the Jacaranda Tree by Sahar Deljani is a beautifully told selection of interwoven stories about people in Iran between 1983 and 2011.The first story tells the experience of a pregnant woman who has been arrested and gives birth in prison She and her fellow inmates become temporarily enchanted by the arrival of the child, which sadly is then taken away from them.The description of the political situation and religious oppression after the revolution in Iran is greatly woven into this narrative, where life in captivity allows a great point of reflection of the outside world In another part of the book three year old Omid witnesses the arrests of his political activist parents, again chosing a great perspective on the madness that grown up people have chosen to participate in Moving decades further into the future the author tells about the moment when Sheida learns that her father was one of those prisoners executed by almost random will of judges, something her mother never had the courage to tell her daughter, so as not to burden her.There is a segment about the child that has been taken from his mother as a child and then returned later, when that strange woman had really nothing to do with her All these well chosen characters illustrate the human aspect of extreme times, it shows the idealism that breaks down with the years, the crumbling of faith over the space of that many years of injustice.Written in amazing prose, well paced and touching in its message this is a very good book that will keep you thinking about it long after you have finished reading it


  7. Diane S ☔ Diane S ☔ says:

    3.5 Wavered between 3 and four, so I settled on this rating This book starts out in 1983 in Tehran s Evin Prison, where a women is about to give birth in horrendous circumstances This is a touching story about a group of young people who believed things in their country needed to get better and suffered for their idealism It is about families, raising the children of their children who are either in prison or have been executed Broken family bonds, children that did not know who they belonge 3.5 Wavered between 3 and four, so I settled on this rating This book starts out in 1983 in Tehran s Evin Prison, where a women is about to give birth in horrendous circumstances This is a touching story about a group of young people who believed things in their country needed to get better and suffered for their idealism It is about families, raising the children of their children who are either in prison or have been executed Broken family bonds, children that did not know who they belonged to and the suffering of all involved I loved that this book showed the devastation of war on not only families as a whole, but on individual women as well Some of these children ended up in other countries, not wanting to return to a country who had taken so much from them and some ended up emotionally stalled, unable to move forward, not able to forget nor forgive I had a bit of trouble with the moving back and forth in time, at times it made the story seem fractured I could not decide if that was the point, that maybe as the families and the country was fractured so too was their stories Don t know if that is true, but I like that explanation It does, however, end with a great deal of hope for their future and their countries future They have now elected a new ruler,in Iran, who is said to bemoderate I hope so for their people because these are not only stories for us to read, these are things that happen to real people We must always keep that in mind


  8. Lynda Lynda says:

    The storyWith the success of the movie Argo, a new generation is coming to learn about revolutionary Iran as a scary and dark place, but with little context for what was happening to the Iranians themselves Children of the Jacaranda Tree offers some perspective Opening with a woman giving birth while being held prisoner refer The author below , Children of the Jacaranda Tree tells the stories of three generations of men and women in post revolutionary Iran from 1983 to 2013 The older gener The storyWith the success of the movie Argo, a new generation is coming to learn about revolutionary Iran as a scary and dark place, but with little context for what was happening to the Iranians themselves Children of the Jacaranda Tree offers some perspective Opening with a woman giving birth while being held prisoner refer The author below , Children of the Jacaranda Tree tells the stories of three generations of men and women in post revolutionary Iran from 1983 to 2013 The older generation endures imprisonment and executions for political activism during the time leading up to the 1979 revolution The second generation is left to pick up the pieces in a country they don t recognize, and a third grows up with fear and insecurity in broken yet loving families.The novel explores the effect that oppression has had on relationships and how Iran s dark history has left the younger generation searching some for solace and some for change.The authorSahar Delijani was born in Tehran in 1983 Her pregnant mother was a prisoner in the city s notorious Evin prison When her waters broke, she was blindfolded and travelling in the back of a van She was held in a room for hours, interrogated, riding the waves of labour pains When her baby was finally born, it would be hours before her mother was allowed to hold her for the first time These events are recounted in fictionalised form in the opening chapter of Children of the Jacaranda Tree Delijani s uncle was killed by the regime He had been arrested six years before, along with his two brothers, his wife and Delijani s mother, but was the only one still in jail at the time of the 1988 summary executions As with Delijani s birth, her uncle s death is also present in the novelit is estimated that thousands of these prisoners were executed Amnesty International puts the number at between 4,500 and 5,000, but Delijani believes it could be as many as 12,000.My review3.5 ratingThe first chapter of this book 1983 Evin Prison, Tehran , which runs for 52 pages, was quite confusing The language and structure was difficult to follow and I felt a little lost There were a number of characters introduced several women prisoners, their unseen relatives, a male guard Many play, at most, a minor role It felt too much, didn t make sense and was off putting I almost gave up But as the book continued it become clear why these characters were introduced each chapter tells the story of a different person connected to that original prison cell, and every named character from the first chapter becomes significant, directly or through their children, at some point in the book While this book definitely drew to a close far better than it opened, I never truly felt involved in this story Perhaps this was a consequence of the writing style, which was like an anthology of connected short stories or vignettes It did not draw me emotionally into the lives and fates of the characters as much as I was expecting.Ultimately however this book is meaningful in that it has given a voice to the thousands who suffered in silence It is also a roadmap of the social and political life of Iran, a country that continues to remain in a state of turmoil


  9. Jennifer Jennifer says:

    probably 4.5 stars, really okay, so this was an amazing read for meup until the last chapter while the final pages were beautiful, they were a bitdisjointed in their flow so rather than seamlessly coming together, the branches of this incredible story, it was a bit of a bumpy close as though, perhaps, a bit of grafting had occurred heh see what i did there yeah i know sorry butthis book is very much worth your time delijani s writing is gorgeous its evocative and almost probably 4.5 stars, really okay, so this was an amazing read for meup until the last chapter while the final pages were beautiful, they were a bitdisjointed in their flow so rather than seamlessly coming together, the branches of this incredible story, it was a bit of a bumpy close as though, perhaps, a bit of grafting had occurred heh see what i did there yeah i know sorry butthis book is very much worth your time delijani s writing is gorgeous its evocative and almost ethereal everything feels very real and believable, yet it s almost dream like, reading this book this novel comes from experiences within delijani s own family i just can t even imagine we are so insulated in north america even those who are well read, knowledgeable about the middle east and interested in politics, human rights and world issues those are all wonderful subjects to be interested in and follow, but we are still far removed from realities lived by so many every day we have no idea


  10. Greg Greg says:

    I wanted this to be so much better than it turned out It s still a good book I ll stand by the three stars, but it doesn t live up to its potential, or to its virtuoso beginning Delijani is obviously passionate about Iran, and that comes through on every page, but she often loses the thread of the story, or rather she doesn t seem to have a firm idea of the story she s trying to tell It could have almost worked as a series of short stories, but in trying to tie everyone together the plot ge I wanted this to be so much better than it turned out It s still a good book I ll stand by the three stars, but it doesn t live up to its potential, or to its virtuoso beginning Delijani is obviously passionate about Iran, and that comes through on every page, but she often loses the thread of the story, or rather she doesn t seem to have a firm idea of the story she s trying to tell It could have almost worked as a series of short stories, but in trying to tie everyone together the plot gets muddy It s very difficult to keep track of who is who as we jump back and forth through the last 30 years, with so many characters having similar experiences and intertwining relationships.I don t mean to be that brutal, but the first 50 pages are spectacular, and I just feel a little let down


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Children of the Jacaranda Tree✅ [PDF / Epub] ☉ Children of the Jacaranda Tree By Sahar Delijani ⚣ – Centrumpowypadkowe.co.uk Tehran, A city paralysed by fear, its people silenced And the beating heart of the regime is Evin prison Yet even within its walls three women dare to dream of a life beyond tyranny Azar gives birth Tehran,A city paralysed by fear, the Jacaranda PDF/EPUB ¾ its people silenced And the beating Children of MOBI :Ú heart of the regime is Evin prison Yet even within its walls of the Jacaranda MOBI í three women dare to dream of a life beyond tyranny Azar gives birth to her daughter in captivity One day the guards simply take her child from her Parisa yearns for her tiny son, growing up a few miles away but completely out of reach And Firoozeh, broken by cruelty, has turned her back on everything she was fighting forBut even in the most desolate places hope can take root.


About the Author: Sahar Delijani

Sahar Delijani was born in the Jacaranda PDF/EPUB ¾ Tehran in and grew up Children of MOBI :Ú in California, where she graduated from the University of California, Berkeley She of the Jacaranda MOBI í lives with her husband in Turin, Italy Children of the Jacaranda Tree is her first novel.