The Girl from the Garden: A Novel

Paperback | August 18, 2015

byParnaz Foroutan

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“A powerful and moving novel about the devastating choices women face when their worth is

tied to their wombs but not themselves. Parnaz Foroutan takes the timeless themes of love, honor, sacrifice, and betrayal and makes them new.”—Gloria Steinem

For all his wealth and success, Asher Malacouti—the head of a prosperous Jewish family living in the Iranian town of Kermanshah—cannot have the one thing he desires above all: a son. His young wife, Rakhel, trapped in an oppressive marriage at a time when a woman’s worth is measured by her fertility, is made desperate by her failure to conceive, and grows jealous and vindictive.

Her despair is compounded by the pregnancy of her sister-in-law, Khorsheed, and by her husband’s growing desire for Kokab, his cousin’s wife. Frustrated by his wife’s inability to bear him an heir, Asher makes a fateful choice that will shatter the household and drive Rakhel to dark extremes to save herself and preserve her status within the family.

Witnessed through the memories of the family’s only surviving daughter, Mahboubeh, now an elderly woman living in Los Angeles, The Girl from the Garden unfolds the complex, tragic history of her family in a long-lost Iran of generations past. Haunting, suspenseful, and inspired by events in the author’s own family, it is an evocative and poignant exploration of sacrifice, betrayal, and the indelible legacy of the families that forge us.

One of Booklist’s Top 10 First Novels of 2015

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From the Publisher

“A powerful and moving novel about the devastating choices women face when their worth istied to their wombs but not themselves. Parnaz Foroutan takes the timeless themes of love, honor, sacrifice, and betrayal and makes them new.”—Gloria SteinemFor all his wealth and success, Asher Malacouti—the head of a prosperous Jewish family livi...

Parnaz Foroutan was born in Iran and spent her early childhood there. She received PEN USA's Emerging Voices fellowship for this novel, which was inspired by her own family history. She has been named to the Hedgebrook fellowship and residency, and received funding from the Elizabeth George Foundation, among other institutions. She cur...

other books by Parnaz Foroutan

The Girl From The Garden: A Novel
The Girl From The Garden: A Novel

Audio Book (CD)|Aug 18 2015

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.72 inPublished:August 18, 2015Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062442864

ISBN - 13:9780062442864

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Editorial Reviews

“[R]emarkable not only for its rare, intimate glimpse of an Iranian Jewish family in the early 20th century, nor for its gorgeous sentences or profound treatment of longing, loss and memory, but for how it seduces and enthralls the reader.”