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Persian Letters

'News Of A Kidnapping' A Hit In Iran After Opposition Leader's Recommendation

Mir Hossein Musavi, a well-read prisonerMir Hossein Musavi, a well-read prisoner
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Mir Hossein Musavi, a well-read prisoner
Mir Hossein Musavi, a well-read prisoner
"If you want to understand my situation, read Gabriel Garcia Marquez's 'News of a Kidnapping,'" Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Musavi was quoted as having said in a recent meeting with his daughters.

Musavi, who together with his wife, Zahra Rahnavard, has been under house arrest for more than six months, reportedly made the comments some three weeks ago. Opposition websites posted an account of the meeting and Musavi's comments last week.

Since then, a number of Iranian websites and blogs have made an electronic version of the book in Persian available for download. Green Movement activists and supporters claim the book has already been downloaded more than 4,000 times.

"News of a Kidnapping" is a nonfiction account of the 1990 abduction of 10 Colombians by drug traffickers and the terror they endure during their captivity. It also describes the suffering and the efforts by the family to free the hostages.

A Facebook page has also been launched on which Musavi supporters share their thoughts or quotes from the book that they believe give a good picture of the plight of the former prime minister.

The Facebook page, titled "News of a Kidnapping: The Mood of a President under Arrest," has so far been "liked" by some 1,000 people.

Meanwhile, the website of the Iranian daily "Shargh" reports that "News of a Kidnapping" is among the best-selling "rare books" nowadays in Iran.

Kaveh Kiayian, a manager of one of Iran's biggest publishing houses, Nashr-e Cheshmeh, told "Shargh" that the book has had "phenomenal" sales recently. Kiayian said he expected "News of a Kidnapping" to make the top ranks of the publishing house's bestseller list by next week.

-- Golnaz Esfandiari
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Comments
     
by: Ahmad
September 15, 2011 13:18
It is already a bestseller Miss Esfandiari, read here: http://www.b-agar.ir/NewsDetail.aspx?id=46

by: spanvi
September 16, 2011 19:11
I am with you.

by: Alidad from: Madrid
September 18, 2011 09:57
I read this in the 1990s when I lived in Tehran. One has a constant need when living in Iran to remove oneself, even by imagination, from its tedious environment. The novel recalls a time when Colombia seemed to be on the verge of utter lawlessness - like Mexico today - before the salutory presidency of Alvaro Uribe Velez.

by: Anonymous
September 18, 2011 16:02
viva mousavi

by: Concerned Colombian from: Colombia
September 22, 2011 15:02
Colombians love Garcia Marquez as a writer but...it seems Iranian people don't know that Garcia Marquez is a communist who has been a very close friend of Fidel Castro for decades and more recently befriended Hugo Chavez. It's very well known in Colombia and we are embarrassed by this. The book is great, but the author does not necessarily support Iranian opposition. I feel bad for the people thanking Garcia Marquez when in fact he supports people just as bad as Ahmadinejad, which suggests Marquez would support Ahmadinejad not the opposition.

About This Blog

Persian Letters is a blog that offers a window into Iranian politics and society. Written primarily by Golnaz Esfandiari, Persian Letters brings you under-reported stories, insight and analysis, as well as guest Iranian bloggers -- from clerics, anarchists, feminists, Basij members, to bus drivers.

Guerrilla Translators

Seen anything in the Iranian blogosphere that you think Persian Letters should cover? If so, contact Golnaz Esfandiari at esfandiarig@rferl.org