May 15, 2019

Nonfiction Review: Taking Cover - One Girl's Story of Growing up During the Iranian Revolution

Title: Taking Cover: One Girl's Story of Growing Up During the Iranian Revolution
Author: Nioucha Homayoonfar
Copy Obtained: From publisher in exchange for an honest review

About the Book from Goodreads
This coming-of-age memoir, set during the Iranian Revolution, tells the story of a young girl who moves to Tehran from the U.S. and has to adjust to living in a new country, learning a new language, and starting a new school during one of the most turbulent periods in Iran's history.

This true story of Nioucha Homayoonfar offers a window into an at-once familiar yet foreign culture. Religion classes are mandatory at her new school. Nioucha has to cover her head and wear robes. Her cousin is captured and tortured after he is caught trying to leave the country. And yet, in midst of so much change and challenge, Nioucha is still just a girl who listens to music and idolizes pop stars. But she has to be careful when Western music is banned and she cannot be seen in public together with her new boyfriend. Will she ever get used to this new way of life?

One sentence review: Good memoir of a part of history I didn't know much about, but now I feel I understand better. 
Best for readers who: Like nonfiction especially a more narrative nonfiction
Best Stick-with-You Image: Just the everyday things - seeing how a different culture lives
Library Thoughts: I'm trying to increase the amount of narrative nonfiction so this would be one I would add to that section. 

I'm not a huge reader of nonfiction, but I'm trying to increase the amount of it I read. This one fit my interests, and it was one that I thought would be a window into a culture and time I didn't know much about. I felt it did both! This really wasn't a part of history I knew much about, and hearing about Nioucha's first-hand experience was a great way to learn about it. I liked that it read more like a story because it made it easier for me to understand and take in. I think that would be true for my students as well. As much as I liked the historical context of the story, I also really liked the daily living in the book. I love learning about how other people live, and this book gave me a nice picture of her life and the life of her family. That's important to me. It wasn't just about the history, but it was about showing the lives of the people who experienced it. 

Can I add that I also like that it has a center section of photographs from Nioucha's life? When I was younger I was a sucker for books that included real pictures, so that part was perfect for me. But I also think it would be great for some of my middle school students. They like to see the real people in the story as well.

As I work to make sure my media center's collection is more diverse, I think this will be a great addition. It will be a great window into a culture and way of living that most of my students don't have experience with. But it will also broaden their knowledge of historical events. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm not much of a reader of non-fiction either, but I am trying to read more of it. This book is getting a buzz. I will try to check it out. Thanks for your thoughts.