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When she was 16, Tala Raassi went to a party. She talked to boys, and wore a mini-skirt. She was punished with 40 lashes and five days in jail. Growing up in Tehran, Tala learnt to use fashion as a getaway whenever she suffered from the restrictions of her society. Labeled a rebel with a propensity to break the rules, she quickly came to realise being hungry for freedom in Iran was a recipe for disaster. Tala's lashes served as a stark warning to her - she needed to escape. Moving to the USA, she was able to develop her own clothing label to massive success. But the cut-throat world of Western fashion wasn't exactly how she had imagined it. She witnessed first-hand the ups and downs of hard work, hard decisions, and hard truths. Fashion Is Freedom is an inspiring true story of how courage, a dream, and some needle and thread can change a life forever...
'Warm, funny . . . It's had my whole family howling with laughter and shedding a few tears' - Shappi Khorsandi, Guardian 'A proper travelogue - a joyful, moving and stereotype-busting tale' - National Geographic Traveller, Books of the Year In 2011, at the height of tension between the British and Iranian governments, travel writer Lois Pryce found a note left on her motorcycle outside the Iranian Embassy in London: ... I wish that you will visit Iran so you will see for yourself about my country. WE ARE NOT TERRORISTS!!! Please come to my city, Shiraz. It is very famous as the friendliest city in Iran, it is the city of poetry and gardens and wine!!! Your Persian friend, Habib Intrigued, Lois decides to ignore the official warnings against travel (and the warnings of her friends and family) and sets off alone on a 3,000 mile ride from Tabriz to Shiraz, to try to uncover the heart of this most complex and incongruous country. Along the way, she meets carpet sellers and drug addicts, war veterans and housewives, doctors and teachers - people living ordinary lives under the rule of an extraordinarily strict Islamic government. Revolutionary Ride is the story of a people and a country. Religious and hedonistic, practical and poetic, modern and rooted in tradition - and with a wild sense of humour and appreciation of beauty despite the comparative lack of freedom - this is real contemporary Iran. *Shortlisted for the Adventure Travel Book of the Year Award* 'Within a few pages I'd recognised a kindred spirit' - Dervla Murphy, author of Full Tilt
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