Fereshteh Molavi is a native of Tehran, Iran. She moved to Canada in 1998 and worked and taught at many post-secondary institutions including Yale University, University of Toronto, York University and Seneca College. She has published many works of fiction and non-fiction in Persian in Iran and Europe, and she has translated poetry, fiction, and essays into Persian. Molavi now lives in Toronto. Her first major work published in English is a short story collection, Stories from Tehran, that she published in 2018 as a Kindle edition. It features women protagonists who “have to inwardly or outwardly contend with, and strive against, a traditional patriarchal society and a theocratic regime that has repressed their aspirations and their hopes for fulfillment.” Her short stories and essays have been published widely in anthologies and magazines.
Thirty Shadow Birds: A Novel
Toronto: Inanna Publications and Education, 2019.
Publisher’s Synopsis (From its website)
To pursue her dream of building a life free from violence for her son and herself, Yalda flees from her nightmarish past as well as her troubled homeland, Iran. But in her new haven, she realizes that nightmares haunt not only her past, but also her present and future. She does what she can to survive, but all her plans dissolve like the shadows and ghosts that follow her. Having fled from an authoritarian regime, and now living in a North America panic-stricken by global terrorism, Yalda is obsessed with all the forms and aspects of violence. She is estranged from her beloved son, Nader, who trains to become an armed security guard, and this means he is wearing a uniform and carrying weapons, prepared to be violent. She cannot forget that her first love was shot and killed by a young prison guard and that her beloved stepbrother also met a violent death. This family history is a wound that makes guns taboo and Yalda yearns to feel safe in a troubled world. The novel is part memory, part dream, and part present, day-to-day struggles for immigrants living in Toronto and Montreal.