Monday, March 23, 2015

Butterfly Stitching by Shermin Nahid Kruse -- Review

Disclosure: I received one or more products in this post in exchange of an honest review. All opinions are my own.

When I choose a book I'm usually drawn to love.  This book surprised me at every step when I enjoyed it and it wasn't a story about love rather than life.  Butterfly Stitching is broken into three parts.  First you get to meet Sahar and Samira.  They are a mother/daughter pair that I wanted to know more about right away.  Samira (Maman) is very witty and Sahar shows herself as a little 9 year old girl struggling with life in 1988 Iran.  She is lucky to have a very loving family made up of her parents and twin brothers.   Their parents have many friends, and life seems comfortable until you realize the missiles and Red Alerts make themselves known.  Because of these dangers, Sahar's family has purchased their green cards and plan to start over in America.  

In Part II, you are taken back to when Samira was just a little girl.  This story is one that broke my heart.  To read of the tragic things a girl in Iran were forced to go through in 1966, so horrible.  You follow Samira (a young artist becoming a woman at age 14) through life at the farm to marriage and then amazing love.  She is forced to rid herself of religious traditions and become a reflection of the man she was married to.

Part III is presented a little different than the previous.  We are taken back to 1988.  As you follow Samira, she is reunited with someone from her past and forced to go through very rough times as she takes her family to America.  She shows how strong she is but the moment one of her children is messed with, she almost crumbles like any mother would be expected to do.  

I really enjoyed reading this story.  As it is inspired by true stories, that makes me want to know more about Iranian culture and how women are treated today.   This story may show history of Iran but it is not a history book.  Simply a recollection of life.  

Butterfly Stitching, was inspired by the true experiences of herself and the women in her family and circle of friends. Through a stunning tapestry of the horrors of political oppression, a terrifying secret police, an inspiring forbidden love, and the realities of war, Butterfly Stitching weaves the tale of Sahar and Samira. Daughter and mother. And through the strength, beauty and imagination of these remarkable women, reveals Iran herself.

Shermin Kruse is the epitome of a global renaissance woman. Having lived several life times throughout the globe, as a child in Iran, a teenager in Canada, and a lawyer in the United States, this poet, mother, painter, model, photographer, and human rights advocate, finally found her true home in Chicago. Through it all, her truest gift was writing and telling stories. And so she now unveils Butterfly Stitching, her stunning debut novel, a gripping tale of oppression and redemption, obsession and love, and loss and authenticity. Kruse began writing poetry as a child in Iran, where she lived in the midst of a bloody war with neighboring Iraq and under the control of Iran’s post-revolutionary secret police. After a childhood spent dodging rockets and the morality police, her family immigrated with little more than a few suitcases. Post immigration, Kruse rose in the ranks of the professional world. She obtained her law degree from the prestigious University of Michigan Law School, cum laude, and partnered at the top tier Chicago firm of Barack Ferrazzano at a very young age. An ardent supporter of the arts, and passionate about peace between the nation of her birth (Iran) and the one of her citizenship and allegiance (the United States), Kruse co-founded and currently serves as a director of Pasfarda Arts and Cultural Organization, an entity committed to promoting peace between the two nations through the arts. She also fell in love with an American man, and together they have three Iranian-American children. Besides her contributions to the artistic and literary world, Kruse is also an advice columnist for Chicago Lawyer and authors scholarly legal articles. In addition, Kruse works with a number of pro bono entities in both civil and criminal cases, and is a frequent speaker on foreign policy issues. 

This review is based strictly on my own opinion.  Others may have different opinions or experiences with the products mentioned above.  I was provided samples free of charge by the company or a PR Agency.  I have provided my open and honest opinions.  No other type of compensation was received for this review.


  1. This is a book that I would love to read. They usually contain life lessons, am I right?

    1. You are exactly right! This book had me thinking about a lot of things that have happened in my life and the result of them.

  2. Loved your review. Sounds like a very interesting read. So said that even in this day and age women are treated as chattel.

  3. Sounds like a great read. This would be something I'd be interested in reading about.