A review by leahsbooks
Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return, by Marjane Satrapi

emotional reflective sad fast-paced


After reading Persepolis 1, I couldn't wait for this to arrive at the library, so that I could find out what happened in Marjane's life. 

Book 1 left off on a bit of a cliffhanger. Marjane had just left the repressive regime of Iran (and her parents) to head to Austria and finish her schooling there. It felt like she was trapped in a no-win situation. Staying in Iran gave her the family support that she's always relied on, but was slowly crushing her spirit by forcing her to bend to a religious regime that was stripping away personal freedoms and her ability to express her brilliant mind. However, as she found out quickly, Austria wasn't everything she had hoped it would be. While she had more freedom to express herself, both physically and philosophically, there was a definite culture clash. Marjane experienced racism and a complete lack of emotional support for the first time in her life. 

Adolescence is a rough time for so many people, and I couldn't even imagine going through not just the physical changes, but the emotional changes as well, while living in a place without my family and a core group of friends who fully accept you and understand you at a deep level. I empathized so deeply with what Marjane went through, and was so impressed with the strength that she was able to display. 

Even with everything that she went through, she demonstrated an ability to take in wisdom that was offered, and fortunately, her family members gave her enough room to make her own mistakes, trusting that she would learn from them. The drawings were stark, with the black and white format, but I thought that it fit the story perfectly. This is definitely a memoir that was well suited for a graphic novel format, and it will stick with me for a long time. 

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