It Ain't So Awful, Falafel

It Ain't So Awful, Falafel

Book - 2016
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Eleven-year-old Zomorod, originally from Iran, tells her story of growing up Iranian in Southern California during the Iranian Revolution and hostage crisis of the late 1970s.
Publisher: Boston : Clarion Books/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, [2016]
Copyright Date: ℗♭2016
ISBN: 9780544612310
Branch Call Number: JF
Characteristics: 378 pages ; 22 cm
Alternative Title: It is not so awful, falafel


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MCPL_Youth Jul 14, 2017

Zomorod - now Cindy at her new school - just wants to fit in. But that just isn't as easy as she was hoping it would be. Available in multiple formats.

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Nov 29, 2020

My children and I LOVED this book.

Very clever and thoughtful book about Zomorod's experience as an Iranian immigrant in the USA during the Iran Crisis. The story is refreshingly true to form. It's about a young girl trying to accept herself when she feels so different from everyone else.

Hillsboro_RobP Feb 11, 2019

Funny and delightful throughout- Iranian pre-teen Zomorod is starting over at a new school, with a new American name (Cindy) and a determination to make friends and fit in. Cleverly written and lovable throughout, Dumas really pulls the reader in to her story.
I actually enjoyed all the lying and conniving that Zomorod does. While I'm sure it might give some parents a heart attack, as a reader it moved things along in an engaging way.

The only caveat is the last third of the book or so, in which Zomorod has to endure living in America during the Iranian hostage crisis. I feel it should have been split into two books, or two major parts just because of the length of that situation. It's the longest hostage crisis in recorded history, so we're forced to skip huge chunks of Zomorod's life in order to get through it all.
Still, a fantastic ride and a read worth smiling about.

Dec 07, 2018

It Ain't So Awful, Falafel is a funny and melancholy growing of age tale that allows us to feel what it's like to grow up Iranian during the 1970s in Southern California. It has straightforward historical facts to boot about the Iran Hostage Crisis. It conveys the responsibilities that immigrants and their children often undertake. Hate mail? Check. Translating for parents? Check. Family and traditional food always holding you down? Check. Here's to never losing hope with the kindness of friends and strangers amid political upheavals that undermine one's humanity.

Fatima Ahmad
Oct 11, 2018

I loved this book.I am speechless.I am a student that wanted to read it aint so awful falafel for YRCA and I could not put it down. I love how Firoozeh Dumas wrote the book from personal experience.I love this book and hope she makes more books like this

Apr 25, 2017

Bes book ever!!;)

Dec 08, 2016

Especially given recent events, we need to read books like this one. Zomorod and her family move to Newport Beach, California when she is just a girl in the 1970s. Desperate to fit in American culture (and with her peers, like many preteens/teens/humans), she changes her name to Cindy and longs for a beanbag chair. Her father works for an Iranian oil company and her mother refuses to come out of the house until she learns English and insists on giving the neighbors embarrassing (to Cindy) Iranian dishes. Every day, Cindy faces some sort of racism--people ask her about her camel, tell her it's a shame she's forgotten her Spanish and her teachers constantly single her out to ask if she'll do special presentations on Iran.
Times in Iran are fraught and the Iranian Revolution and Iran hostage crisis lead many Americans to openly hate Iranians. Cindy hides hate crimes that are committed against her family so as not to upset her parents. Her father loses his job and is unable to find another one given his only job titles contain the word "Iranian" in them. Her mother spends all her time worrying about their family back in Iran. They all can't stop watching the news and they all fall into a depression as they are left completely insecure about what their futures hold.
This book gives readers an idea of what it would be like to come of age as a complete outsider. And more specifically, it gives readers an idea of what it would actually be like to be an Iranian in North America during such a tumultuous time that is completely out of their control and certainly not their fault. Readers will learn about important historical events and hopefully gain a healthy dose of empathy.

Chapel_Hill_KrystalB Nov 28, 2016

This is a charming and funny coming-of-age story, one that I found very relevant to where we find ourselves now despite it taking place in the late 1970's. Zomorod is from Iran and is living with her family in Southern California during the Iranian Revolution and hostage crisis. So, as a preteen, she’s dealing with the usual- friendships and school and boys- while also dealing with the unusual- a severely depressed mom and worries about her homeland and unkind neighbors. But there is a lot of hope here despite some hateful characters. Many open their arms to the family, welcoming them to a new place while also showing genuine interest in their home. Imagine the world if we all did that.


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Nov 29, 2020

kolbeha thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

Jul 08, 2019

violet_ape_313 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 10 and 99

Feb 18, 2019

pink_dolphin_3025 thinks this title is suitable for 7 years and over


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