I thought this novel was wonderful. Set mostly in Iran in the 1950’s during a time of political upheaval, and also partially taking place more recently in the United States, this book is about lost love, the quirks of fate, missed chances, and forgiveness. Two idealistic young people grow up and face a world that does not behave as they wish it did.
This poignant story is definitely sad, while strongly life affirming at the same time. The human spirit is resilient, and alternate paths, while maybe not so radiant, are not so bad either. Love does triumph anyway. And who knows if one got exactly what one wanted, whether that would have worked out better? Are we beaten down and compromised by life’s unexpected pivot points, or are we strengthened by our surrender to what we could not have changed?
I don’t want to say too much about this one, but if you believe in lasting love, you will like this solid piece of literature. This is romantic without being cheesy or chick-lit. It is down to earth, with insights into a culture and history we don’t often read about. I found it engrossing, and give The Stationery Shop five stars.