Here's why you should read Persepolis :-
i)Satrapi talks about the
pains of being born as a female in a country under a most repressive Islamist regime, without ever sounding too serious or preachy.
ii)Iran's history during the growing years of Marji is summarized for you in a few pages along with the political and socio-cultural background of the times.
iii)This book features, by far, the coolest pair of parents that I've ever read about in a novel or book (or that I can think of at the moment).
iv)It offers you a very original and true-to-life account of revolution, war and its inevitable consequences.
v)Themes such as disillusionment with religion and the sheer absurdity of religious dogma are explored in the book in the most offhand manner.
v)A steady undercurrent of humour runs through the length of the book, lessening the gravity of the backdrop and sometimes even depressing situations.
Sample these :-
Marji's mom:- "Our country has always known war and martyrs. So, like my father said:'When a big wave comes, lower your head and let it pass!'."
Marji's inner monologue at this:- "That's very Persian. The philosophy of resignation."
Marji's enraged father to her school headmistress :- 'If hair is as stimulating as you say, then you need to shave your mustache!' (when the latter scolds the school girls for wearing their veils improperly enough to show hair)
(What a cool dad to have! No honestly.)
vi)Last but not the least, it packs in all of the above mentioned points into a graphic novel (with very simple artwork) of 160 pages which can be enjoyed by readers of all ages and read in about 3 hours flat or less.
Can't wait to know what happens to Marji in Austria in the next volume.