Tuesday 27 January 2009

The Blood of Flowers by Anita Amirrezvani

The Blood of Flowers

It's a story of a girl, and we never learn her name. She is born in a little village in Persia in the 17th century. When her father dies she and her mother must make a choice or else they will starve to death so they leave their village and heads for the capital. There lives a half-brother to her father and they have never met him. But he takes them in, but soon they see that they are more treated like servants than anything else.

But this 14 year old girl has a gift, she weaves beautiful carpets, and her uncle works for the Shah. He is skilled in the way to make patterns, and the girl wants to be as good as him because so far she is good, but she is no master. Her work is poor, but she improves under his hand. If she had only been a boy.

Most of all she wants her mother and her to be free, and when she is offered a temporary marriage, a sigheh, with a wealthy man she is torn. Lose her honour and virginity, or try to make a better life for herself.

Anita Amirrezvani has a way of writing, and I am captured by the book, and the girl with no name. But I do think the sex scenes were a little too many, and they made me dislike the girl. I have read other books with girls who fall so suddenly for someone in that way, and I never did like it. Other than that I liked this book and I couldn't put it down. I loved the history, and glimpses of an age gone. I never thought I could be that interested in how carpets are made.

The book has a rhythm, and she weaves the threads into a beautiful story. Worth noticing are the 8 old Persian stories that are told in the book, either by the girls mother or by herself. The create a sort of magic that isn't lost.

I do want to read more of her, but this is a her first book and hopefully more are coming. If they are set in that time and place the better. She is an author to look out after.

Wednesday 21 January 2009

The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan

The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan
Book 2 of The Wheel of Time

Rand al´Thor has found out that he is the Dragon Reborn, Lews Therin Kinslayer, the man who sundered the world.

After finding the Horn of Valere they have returned to Fal Dara, and Rand seeks a way to escape this destiny. But the world is closing in on him, and even the Amyrlin seat comes to Shienar. How can he escape the fact that he can channel, and is theDragon, and how can he keep his friends from harms way?

The dark one grows strong, and the Forsaken are loose. Trouble will come to the world of man and will he understand his role in it all.

Then the horn gets stolen and he, Mat and Perrin sets out with a troup of Shienaran soldiers to take it back from Darkness. Meanwhile Egwene and Nynavene begin their journey to the White Tower to become Aes Sedai.

Meanwhile in the another part of the continent a strange race comes from a land far across the ocean and begin their invasion the world.

And all roads will lead to Toman Head.

The Wot book for January has been read, and I do love this world. Even if Jordan included a lot of people in these books. They can get rather confusing if you don't keep track of everyone. But I like the adventure, and the characters. Sure Rand al`Thor is a cliche shepard turned hero but aren't they all. This is one of the greatest fantasy series ever written.

Tuesday 6 January 2009

Pomegranate soup by Mesha Mehran

The last book that I finished in 2008.
Visit her homepage

Pomegranate Soup: A novel by Mesha Mehran

The Aminpour sisters from Iran arrives in the small village Ballinacroagh in Ireland. Having fled some years ago from the turmoil of Iran the sisters thinks of the village as a safe haven.

Marjan Aminpour along side her younger sisters Bahar and Layla have bought an old pasty shop and decides to creating a Persian cafe called Babylon. The scents of cinnamon, rosebuds and cardamon float out into the streets and changes the lives of the people in the village. A people fed on boiled cabbage and Guinness.

The local "king" of the village, Thomas McGuire is not happy about the new cafe. He allready owns most of the town and he wanted the shop for himself. He is set in his ways and he wants that space at all costs.

Marjan starts her cooking, and the reader gets 11 recipes along the way. Bahran learns to forget the past and young Layla will find love.

Their first guest to the cafe is Father Fergal Mahoney and after awhile more follow, among them the previous owner Estell Delmecio who sees in the sisters the children she never got, and the villages hairdresser Fiona who has her own reasons to dislike Thomas McGuire. The sisters has some welocmed friend in a village that looks on them like intruders.

Can they hide from their past in Iran or will it come back to haunt them and break the peaceful lives they try to build for themselves?

This a lovely and rich book that make you long for good food and company. Mehrans language flows and her words come at an ease. It's a book that is hard to put down and I loved it from the start. You can read it for several reasons, a look back at 80-s Ireland, 70-s Iran, a way to find new recipes, to read about friendship or love, or just to enjoy all of these things that come together in a great mix.


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