"Rooftops of Tehran"
by Mahbod Seraji
Synopsis: In a middle-class neighborhood of Iran's sprawling capital city, 17-year-old Pasha Shahed spends the summer of 1973 on his rooftop with his best friend Ahmed, joking around one minute and asking burning questions about life the next. He also hides a secret love for his beautiful neighbor Zari, who has been betrothed since birth to another man. But the bliss of Pasha and Zari's stolen time together is shattered when Pasha unwittingly acts as a beacon for the Shah's secret police. The violent consequences awaken him to the reality of living under a powerful despot, and lead Zari to make a shocking choice...
This was my favorite book out of everything I read this year! I felt like this book was written for me, it was just that perfect. I tend to get really impatient with books, but I didn't have that problem with "Rooftops of Tehran". I know this book technically isn't a teen book; however, the characters are teenagers and they go through problems that many teens can relate to. The characters have problems from the everyday disagreements with teachers to more intense issues such as political disobedience and death of loved ones. Something I really liked about the book was the vivid description of the alley that the characters lived in. Seraji made the community come to life in a way that took the book to a whole new level for me. Even though there was a lot of tragedy in the book, I still felt that the alley was a vibrant atmosphere that had hope through the darkest of times.
I would recommend this book to anyone who loves historical fiction, love stories, coming of age stories, and for anyone who enjoyed "Kite Runner". I think this is a great book for book clubs and even has discussion questions at the end of the book. I am going to be recommending this book to everyone I work with because it was just that fantastic. I wish I had a special rating for books that are this wonderful, it is something that I will be thinking about.