I did not want this book to end. I worked in the garden for 4 hours each of two days just so I wouldn't be interrupted by the world inside. This was a lovely story and was so beautifully read. I have not been so caught up since I began audible listening 3 years ago. I believe that in this case the audible version surely bests the written word--Shohreh's voice carried me away. The interview with the author at the end was a wonderful closing. Those who create with fabric, yarns, weaving--even painters--should enjoy the discussion of colors, techniques, design of the carpets. I am not an artist but would not have tired had there been more of this description. A beautiful listen.
This is one of my favorite audiobooks so far. It is a wonderfully rich story filled with culture and history. The characters are interesting and the story twists and turns. I absolutely loved Shohreh Aghdashloo's voice and performance.
I had high hopes for this book. While it started out interestingly enough, it could not hold my interest, however I ploughed on til the end. When I start playing the book on 3.5 speed I know it's a lost cause. Didn't take me long to start listening to this book on 3.5 speed!
I was taken with this book about a young woman's life in 17th c. Iran. The narrator was quite good, though there were a few issues with English pronunciation and not being able to understand what she was actually saying at first. However, most of the mispronounced words I could still understand or decipher through the context, though there were a few along the way I did not understand. Still a very well performed narration and could certainly listen to another narration by Aghdashloo. The basic story was reasonably good and the setting in 17th c. Iranian culture including the rug-making aspects were quite interesting. I enjoyed her overall writing style and found it beautifully descriptive which helped the story to flourish as well. The side narratives (stories told by the characters) were a little hit and miss for me...some truly engaged me and others seemed to be more of a distraction from the main narrative: I would say that mostly the side narratives added to the book for me. Overall, I definitely recommend!
YES - Shohreh Aghdashloo's voice is mesmerizing, couple that with a great story and your are instantly transported to 17th century Iran. The story is simple with it's themes - Girl to woman, mother-daughter relationship and becoming your own person, but the way the tale is told is fantastic.
One girl's tale into self discovery...
I may in 10 years. I am certainly going to pass it along.
I think the descriptions of the rug-making process was the most interesting "character".
Her rich voice and authentic background
There were moments when I could not stop listening because of the intrigue!
touching, informative, magical
Historical fiction in a foreign (to me) place and time is always fun and educational, but I knew nothing about 17th c. Iran, so it is hard to compare to another specific book. Maybe The Red Tent or Tokaido Road in that they opened up a place in history in a personal way.
At first I did not like how low and gravelly her voice was all the time, made it hard to modulate for different voices. But her accent and pronunciation of the Arabic words are beautiful and once I got used to it, I loved it.
I love the way the author weaves traditional story-telling into the narrative and the way she illustrated the hardship of women's lives without rancor. The characters were rounded and real.
I enjoyed this book. I like historical fiction type writing...and while this didn't include a ton of history, there were cultural elements that I found educational. I liked the readers accent...I thought it really added to the story.
What a smooth, deep, and spellbinding voice this author has. (I almost thought it was Jeanne Moreau, from The Lover) It's almost hypnotizing! The story itself is very well written, and filled with emotional depth. I love the many scintillating descriptions of Indian food that made my mouth water, and the way so many little stories are told along the way between the mother and daughter. The author has a remarkable gift of welcoming you into a foreign world and making you feel quite at home. This was a credit well spent.
Learning about carpet design and getting a detailed peek into a world I knew nothing of was a privilege. The descriptions of the food, the customs, and clothing were fascinating.
The author, Anita Amirrezvani, artfully spins a plot that sucks the reader in. The conflict is gripping as the protagonist's fate unfolds. Adding to the pleasure of the story are the sumptuous details about the era. The bathing rituals of women. the banquets, the intricate patterns of rugs, the silk finery of the rich and powerful colour in a culture and time that is faint in the minds of many western readers.
The main character, an unnamed girl, was brought to life. Shohreh Aghdashloo's husky voice is compelling, and once I adjusted to her lush accent, I was totally entranced by her reading. I believe she must be a native speaker of Farsi, so it was a treat to hear the proper pronunciation of words and places. In particular, the exclamations of surprise and delight--"Voy!" stuck with me.
I am surprised that none of the reviews I read prior to reading the book mentioned that a solid portion of the book was about the main character's sexual awakening. Discussing this in too much detail would spoil the plot, which is probably the reason for this oversight. Indeed, I squirmed as I read about the initial sexual situation she found herself in. To my western mindset and sensibilities, it smacked of child abuse--she was a 15-year-old and the man was older. Her lack of power--the total inability to dissent--troubled me. That she wasn't repelled by what was happening to her was hard for me to accept. I don't, however, see this as a problem with the writing; it was more of a "TILT" due to cultural constructs.
The Blood of Flowers is as rich with detail as it is thick with tension. A satisfying resolution makes it an enjoyable and educational experience.