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Peacock Princess: Three American Women Held Captive in Royal and Revolutionary Iran

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Trapped among decadent Iranian aristocracy in royal and revolutionary Iran, Barbara Bell's life was devastated by her marriage to a wealthy, sadistic Quajar royal. Her subsequent struggle to regain control of her and her daughter's lives takes place as the Ayatollah Khomeini comes into power in Iran.
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Overview

Trapped among decadent Iranian aristocracy in royal and revolutionary Iran, Barbara Bell's life was devastated by her marriage to a wealthy, sadistic Quajar royal. Her subsequent struggle to regain control of her and her daughter's lives takes place as the Ayatollah Khomeini comes into power in Iran.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Bahram Mossallai, an Iranian prince, was a fellow student at UCLA when 18-year-old Barbara fell in love with him. But his charm vanished when she arrived in Tehran to marry him and found an unrecognizable tyrant. He demanded her subservience, her acceptance of Muslim ways, his regular beatings and sexual violations. After seven years, she was able to buy her freedom and return to the U.S. by leaving her only son with him. She was free to leave with her two daughters, whom he had beaten, molested and terrorized. But the girls did not adjust to life in the U.S. and both returned to their father, only to be shocked anew by his cruelty and contempt. Yet for a time, one became an ardent Muslim, joining in the uprisings that deposed the Shah only to be subsequently horrified by the religious violence under Ayatollah Khomeini. Both girls, after various dramatic misadventures, eventually married happily in the U.S., as did their mother. This extraordinarily intimate account is also a lucid portrayal of the religious and social climate under both the Shah and Khomeini, and the general hostility toward the West. (Sept.)
Library Journal
This story of a nave American woman's marriage to a wealthy, maniacally brutal Iranian during the reign of the shah trods familiar ground. Bell's efforts to extricate herself and her children from her husband's control form the bulk of the narrative, told in the third person by writer Harris. The account is far less effective than Betty Mahmoody's Not Without My Daughter (LJ 11/1/87). Generalizations abound in a murky chronology, and the enabling attitudes of the victimized women tend to mitigate the reader's sympathy. Devotees of supermarket tabloids may find the melodramatic style compelling, but those seriously interested in the treatment of women in Islamic culture are better served by Mahmoody's work or Jan Goodwin's Price of Honor (LJ 2/15/94). Not recommended.-Rose Cichy, Osterhout Free Lib., Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781567900064
  • Publisher: Cool Hand Communications
  • Publication date: 8/28/1995
  • Pages: 317
  • Product dimensions: 6.35 (w) x 9.32 (h) x 1.18 (d)

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