“Please make sure the children know that I was guilty of nothing. With those words, Colonel Mohammad Bagher Latifi bid his wife a final farewell in his Tehran prison cell on May 23, 1979. Within minutes, he was executed by members of the newly installed Khomeini regime. With her father’s death, Afschineh Latifi’s once-secure world came crashing down. Seemingly overnight, her existence went from one of privilege to one of crushing uncertainty.”
EVEN AFTER ALL THIS TIME is the moving account of a family that, despite seemingly insurmountable odds, persevered and made their dreams come true. In the telling, Afschineh Latifi, her sister, and their mother emerge as women of indomitable strength, courage, and resiliency whose incredible story is certain to inspire readers everywhere.
From Publishers Weekly “Be like a nail!” Latifi’s mother would scold when the author cried. These words are a testament to the grit Latifi displays throughout this wonderful memoir. The author was 10 and her sister 11 in May 1979, when their father, a military officer under the Shah, was executed by Khomeini’s soldiers. Only 34, their mother was left to raise four young children (she also had two sons) in a newly fundamentalist society hostile to women. At first, the girls “loved putting on the chadors. It felt like Halloween.” But when a villager started bidding on marrying Latifi’s then 13-year-old sister, their mother knew they had to leave. Yet visas were routinely denied, passports arbitrarily confiscated. Still, Mrs. Latifi managed to take her daughters to Austria, where they attended a convent school (the boys remained in Tehran). The year in Austria was disastrous; the girls unwittingly spent the family’s savings trying to overcome their loneliness. America was the next solution; there, the girls lived with relatives in Virginia and learned to take care of each other. Things turned out all right—the family was finally reunited, the children all chose good careers. Unlike many Iranian memoirs, most of this one takes place outside the country. Still, it’s a remarkable, resonating tale. Photos. (Apr.)