A recording of this talk is now available to view here:
Roya is a dreamy, idealistic teenager living in 1953 Tehran who, amidst the political upheaval of the time, finds a literary oasis in kindly Mr. Fakhri’s neighborhood book and stationery shop. She always feels safe in his dusty store, overflowing with fountain pens, shiny ink bottles, and thick pads of soft writing paper. When Mr. Fakhri, with a keen instinct for a budding romance, introduces Roya to his other favorite customer—handsome Bahman, who has a burning passion for justice and a love for Rumi’s poetry—she loses her heart at once. And, as their romance blossoms, the modest little stationery shop remains their favorite place in all of Tehran.
A few short months later, on the eve of their marriage, Roya agrees to meet Bahman at the town square, but suddenly, violence erupts—a result of the coup d’etat that forever changes their country’s future. In the chaos, Bahman never shows. For weeks, Roya tries desperately to contact him, but her efforts are fruitless. With a sorrowful heart, she resigns herself to never seeing him again….
Marjan Kamali is the award-winning author of The Stationery Shop (Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster), a national bestseller, and Together Tea (EccoBooks/HarperCollins), a Massachusetts Book Award finalist. She is a 2022 recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship.
The Stationery Shop is being adapted into a TV series at HBO and Together Tea was adapted for the stage.
Marjan holds a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the University of California, Berkeley, an MBA from Columbia University, and a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from New York University. Born in Turkey to Iranian parents, Kamali spent her childhood in Turkey, Iran, Germany, Kenya, and the U.S. She currently teaches creative writing at GrubStreet and lives in the Boston area with her family.
Those who are interested in purchasing The Stationery Shop before this talk can order directly from Books Inc. via their website.