The Lion and the Lizard

Jane Rawlinson, Author St. Martin's Press $15.95 (263p) ISBN 978-0-312-48731-7
Rawlinson's searing, episodic narrative depicts five families in Iran during 1979, when violence and agitation convulsed the country and divided its residents. Architect Fereydoun Homayoun quakes when the Ayatollah Khomeini comes to power, for Homayoun industriously served the now-reviled Shah. Roya Gabayan dreads the day when her pregnant daughter must leave home to bear her illegitimate child, which will be offered for adoption. Roya must acquiesce to this plan because her brutal husband supports the new regime's subjugation of women. Indigent Iranian Jew Aziz Baniyazdi longs to settle in Israel, yet she and her family seem anchored in poverty; even worse, Aziz's child is arrested for accidentally hitting a soldier with a pebble. Others, including Bahai civil servant Shirin Khaksar and her Roman Catholic landlady, fear persecution for their religious beliefs. Powerful characterizations distinquish this first novel, which grippingly portrays the virulence of fanaticism and its most heinous consequencethe slaughter of innocents. (March 4
Reviewed on: 01/01/1986
Release date: 01/01/1986
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