The unique culture of Iran and the sweep of its history are revealed in this evocative travelogue of an American family searching for a lost friend in the country of their youth.
Growing up in Tehran in the 1960s, Terence Ward and his brothers were watched over by Hassan, the family’s cook, housekeeper, and cultural guide. After an absence of forty years, Ward embarked on a pilgrimage with his family in search of Hassan. Taking us across the landscape of Iran, he plumbs its unimaginably rich past, explores its deep conflicts with its Arab neighbors, and anticipates the new “Great Game” now being played out in central Asia. Insightful, informative, and moving, Searching for Hassan
enhances our understanding of the Middle East with the story of a family who came to love and admire Iran through their deep affection for its people.
“Astonishing and deeply poignant.” –The Washington Post
“Quixotic, colorful and amusing. . . . An unexpected ode to Iran.” –The New York Times Book Review
“Informative and touching . . . provides a marvelously nuanced portrait of Iran.” –Francine Prose, Elle
“Ward describes a more intricate image of a nation caught in a tug of war with itself. . . . He shows the country in all its complexity.” –Los Angeles Times
“[A] nostalgic, sometimes harrowing pilgrimage.” –The New Yorker
“A wonderfully tactile, rich book . . . written from the right place (the heart), and with the right kind of search in mind (the search for grace).” –Esquire
“Ward’s sympathetic and humane portrayals of everyday Iranians can help us transcend today’s policy papers and State Department briefings in order to find commonalities.” –USA Today
“Searching for Hassan should be required reading for U.S. foreign policy makers.” –BookPage
“Ward hooks the reader with his unique past and observant eye.” –Detroit Free Press
“A powerful memoir that plumbs the depths of Iranian culture and tradition. . . . A memorable journey.” –Library Journal