“In this searing memoir, Rahimeh Andalibian struggles to make sense of two brutal crimes: a rape, avenged by her father, and a murder, of which her beloved oldest brother stands accused. Her journey, eloquently and intimately told, is a tribute to the resilience of families everywhere.
Andalibian takes us first into her family's tranquil, jasmine-scented days of prosperity in Mashhad, Iran, where she and her brothers grow up in luxury at The Rose Hotel, owned by her father. In the aftermath of the 1979 revolution, the family is forced to flee: first to the safety of a mansion in Tehran, next to a squalid one-room flat in London, and finally to California, where they discover they are not free from the weight of their own secrets. Caught between their parents’ traditional values and their desire to embrace an American way of life, Andalibian and her brothers struggle to find peace in the wake of tragedy.
In the tradition of The Kite Runner, House of Sand and Fog, and Reading Lolita in Tehran, this is a universal story of healing, and rebirth.”
—National Geographic Society (2015)
“This brave, beautifully written memoir . . . Touching on family, faith, assimilation, grief, and closure, Andalibian writes movingly about using her training as a clinical psychologist to heal herself and her family, homing in on secrets carried from Iran as the root of her family’s complex trauma. She sharply addresses topics relating to religious and political repression, profiling, and childhood trauma, while skillfully crafting an insightful, passionate immigrant’s story with cross-cultural resonance.”
—Starred Publisher's Weekly Review (2014)
“Spanning decades and countries... secrets tightly woven together to form a single, poignant tapestry. Pair this with Jazmin Darznik’s The Good Daughter”
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About the Author
Dr. Rahimeh Andalibian was born in the city of Mashhad, Iran. When she was nine years old, in the wake of the Iranian Revolution and in the midst of the Iran-Iraq war, her family moved first to London, then immigrated to the United States in 1986. Rahimeh obtained her Doctorate in Psychology at the age of 24, and since that time, has been a systemic psychologist practicing in California, New York City, and now Washington D.C. She specializes in trauma and has worked with families, couples, children, and groups for nearly two decades.
Rahimeh's work helps her clients unshackle themselves from their past, transforming their lives with the understanding that emotional pain has physical and neural implications. She uses a combination of advanced modalities that include sensorimotor psychotherapy, EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing), and EFT (emotionally focused therapy) for families and couples. For more information about her private practice and workshops, click here.