A Story of Generations...

Title: The Good Daughter by Jasmin Darznik
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
336 pages
Genre: Non-Fiction - family, relationships

This book is set to be released in January 2011.  I received an advanced electronic copy from the publisher through netgalley.com 

Synopsis: One day when Jasmin Darznik is helping her mother pack up to move, a photograph falls from a stack of old letters. The girl in it is her mother. She is wearing a wedding veil, and at her side stands a man whom Jasmin has never seen before.

At first, Jasmin’s mother, Lili, refuses to share any information. Months later, Jasmin receives the first of ten cassette tapes revealing a wrenching hidden story of her family’s true origins in Iran: her mother’s troubled history of abuse and neglect, and a daughter she was forced to abandon in order to escape that life. The final tape reveals that her sister, Sara, is still living in Iran

Review: I got a bit side tracked while reading this book thanks to the holidays and family coming in from out of town but ..........I was about half way done this book before I remembered it was a true story.  Jasmin's telling of her families journey is riveting and swept me up immediately.  I was completely enthralled by what her grandmother and her mother achieved and fought to overcome for their children. Her grandmother manipulated a system that did not favor women to help her children achieve an education and escape a dangerous situation.  Her mother survived, became educated and helped her family thrive in Iran, and then again in America.  She may have had to leave her 1st daughter behind but situations and cultures being what they are she did the best she could with a rotten situation.  Jasmin had no recollection of what her family went through or what it was like to live in Iran.  Her mother and grandmothers history was new to her and something her mother never talked about.  But after listening to her mothers tapes she started to understand many of her mothers actions and what drove her.

Jasmin and her parents moved to America right before the Iran hostage situation and then the Iran/Iraq war.  Growing up in American during that time was not always easy and Jasmin's experience was vastly different than her mothers who like most new immigrants like to hold tight to old cultures and traditions while the younger generation wants to "fit in" and doesn't understand why they need to follow traditions from their old country when they are now in America.

A true story of culture, survival, perseverance, loss and survival.