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Lying in Tehran is about survival. Welcome to Tehran, a city where survival depends on a network of subterfuge. Here is a place where mullahs visit prostitutes, drug kingpins run crystal meth kitchens, surgeons restore girls' virginity and homemade porn is sold in the sprawling bazaars; a place where ordinary people are forced to lead extraordinary lives. Based on extensive interviews, CITY OF LIES chronicles the lives of eight men and women drawn from across the spectrum of Iranian society and reveals what it is to live, love and survive in one of the world's most repressive regimes.
Orion Publishing Co
Number of Pages
has done is extraordinary. Despite the bleakness of life in their "city of lies", her Iranians continue to soldier on, hoping the future holds something better -- Azadeh Moaveni FINANCIAL TIMES Phenomenal... Pacy and informative. City of Lies is an extraordinary insight into a country barely known - an often feared - by the West VOGUE In City of Lies, the British-Iranian writer Ramita Navai has brought together an intriguing collection of cameo portraits to illustrate the difficulties and challenges Tehranis face in their everyday lives... Navai provides a fascinating insight into the routine hypocrisy and dishonesty for millions of city-dwellers... Navai's book offers a fascinating glimpse into how Iranians cope with the demands of living under one of the world's most authoritarian regimes. But it also suggests the country needs to experience an altogether different type of revolution before its people can ever dream of living something approaching a normal life -- Con Coughlin THE MAIL ON SUNDAY Of the great cities of the Earth, Tehran is by no means the most engaging... Bursting with automobiles, poisoned with smog and opium, shaken by earthquakes and almost permanent insurrection... City of Lies shows how well the Islamic Republic, for all its unworldliness has survived for 35 years and why a man such as ex-president Ahmadinejad, to us a mere clown, for a long time commanded a following... In few other places is the gulf so wide between what is said and what is done -- James Buchan THE GUARDIAN Iranians will condemn Navai for sowing this bleak and ugly side of Iran, in which she has broken taboos and laid bare what everyone knows but nobody mentions... She writes well and with fluency, in tight prose -- Antony Wynn TLS In City of Lies Ramita Navai tells us that 'in order to live in Tehran you have to lie'. Survival there depends on dodging the fatwas of Iran's medieval theocratic regime. Drink, drugs and paid-for sex proliferate; the divorce rate soars while religious attendance tumbles. Navai paints brilliantly insightful portraits of eight Tehranis suffering under an Iranian revolution which has gone terribly wrong - but with no stomach for another in the light of the failed 'Arab Spring' -- Jonathan Rugman THE SPECTATOR (Books of the Year) Gripping, a dark delicious unveiling of the secret decadent life of Islamic Tehran, deeply researched yet exciting as a novel -- Simon Sebag Montefiore EVENING STANDARD Each chapter reads almost like a short story, covering the fascinating inner worlds of socialites, prostitutes, gangsters, junkies and anti-regime bloggers. Nose jobs, illicit sex, bribery and fear of the Gashte Ershad morality police loom large in this vivid captivating insight as Navai explores the little reported day-to-day existence of Tehranians -- Tom Chesshyre THE TIMES 'Books of the Year' Compulsively readable... readers are granted a panoramic view of Iranian society THE WALL STREET JOURNAL EUROPE This is an important book. A seamless literary tapestry that just happens to be true. Ramita Navai's collection of stories are uniquely Iranian yet they will move, chill and delight even a reader indifferent to Persia -- Sam Kiley, Foreign Affairs Editor, SKY NEWS Ramita Navai has written a fascinating, unforgettable book about the unbreakable human spirit in one of the world's great cities -- Jeremy Bowen The stories are beautiful, and they're so well-detailed and nuanced -- Jon Stewart THE DAILY SHOW Utterly gripping and one of the best books I've read in a long time -- Jane Merrick THE INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY The stories are beautiful, and they're so well-detailed and nuanced -- Jon Stewart THE DAILY SHOW