I read the two part autobiographical story of Marjane Satrapi. I know that the newer editions combine both books into one graphic novel. I will review both parts separately since I read them at separate times: Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi
My thoughts: In part one, Marjane recounted her childhood in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. She gave a brief history of her country and explained the revolution through the eyes of a child. Marjane was well educated. She was raised by two progressive parents who encouraged Marjane to think for herself and be outspoken. As a young girl caught in a war, she was fascinated with death. People who died fighting in the war became her heroes. Marjane did not fully understand the meaning behind all of the violence; she thought that everything was for a good cause.
This first part was full of emotion. Though Marjane was intelligent and courageous, her age showed her naivete. Some of the things she used to say or think were a little irritatingbecause of it. However, her descriptions of her country and how everything changed to be backward was heartbreaking.
Even though Marjane explained everything through the point-of-view of a child, it was very well described. The images that the author created to go along with her story portrayed the graphic novel's mood perfectly. This book was well done that it made me eager to pick up the second part.
Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return by Marjane Satrapi
My Thoughts: This second part picked up right where the first book left off. Marjane was sent to Austria at age 14 by her parents to keep her safe. Marjane struggled being an immigrant in a country where Iranians were negatively portrayed, tried to survive without her family, and tried to combat depression while trying to come-of-age. The feelings of being lost and feeling guilty were the predominant themes of this book.
Though I understood why the second part lead a different direction versus the first one, I was not as attached to this one. It was interesting to see how a young girl battled between different cultures and how she tried to live a life away from her family, but the passion that I felt in the first book was not as strong as it was in this one. I found myself taking longer to read this even though it was a quick book.