Persepolis is , in my opinion , one of the best graphic novels I have ever read. The illustrations compliment the book perfectly and allow the style of the writer to flow in an unprecedented way.
Persepolis begins in 1980’s Iran during the Islamic revolution where the author has just started school in Tehran. Using the autobiographical context, the book perfectly illustrates the tensions coursing through everyday school and family life. The reader learns along with the author just how unjust and unforgiving the new regime is, using the context of the veil to underpin the story line. As Marjane grows up seemingly more and more of the world she lives in is revealed. From taking part in her first demonstration against the regime, to her first experience of a relationship, the author slowly turns against the new Islamic regime, culminating at the point when her parents send her away to Austria for her secondary education.
In Austria Marjane is exposed to many alien and seemingly horrifying things that she was kept isolated and protected from in Iran: sex, drugs and hippies (also her first friends at her new school). As her new life begins to develop, her private life is plunged into disarray by the outbreak of war in Iran. As book one ends Marjane returns to Iran with a new take on life, ready to face the world. This first book truly is the story of a childhood.
Louis Smith Landor