cover image Night in Tehran

Night in Tehran

Philip Kaplan. Melville House, $26.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-61219-850-7

The Iranian revolution provides the backdrop for former U.S. ambassador Kaplan’s ambitious debut. In 1978, faced with the imminent collapse of ally Iran on the brink of rebellion, the Carter administration’s top spymaster dispatches diplomat David Weiseman to Tehran to identify an acceptable replacement for the U.S.-backed Shah. Weiseman sees shadows of his childhood escape from Nazi-controlled Austria as his political mission becomes a matter of survival. Partnered with a femme fatale journalist he suspects is French intelligence with her own agenda, he must build a network of trusted sources. As the country descends into chaos, Weiseman is exposed to multiple dangers from the established Iranian elite, military hardliners, and religious zealots, while he remains wary of the surreptitious maneuvering of his Middle Eastern and European partners. Kaplan dramatically shows how competing interests, foreign manipulation, and domestic brutality led to the violent overthrow of the last Persian monarch and one of the longest hostage crises on record. Not just a snapshot in time, this insightful novel is a powerful reminder of how Cold War strategies continue to reverberate through the modern global landscape. [em]Agent: Ronald Goldfarb, Goldfarb & Assoc. (Nov.) [/em]