A story of injustice and survival in Iran’s most notorious prison
Maziar Bahari left London in June 2009 to cover Iran's presidential election, believing he'd return to his pregnant fiancée, Paola, in just a few days, a week at most. In fact he would spend the next three months in Iran's most notorious prison, enduring brutal interrogation sessions, released only after mounting global outrage and a final condemnation from US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Gripping and masterfully told, Then They Came for Me delves into Iran's history of oppression, and details how the democratic impulses of the youth are violently oppressed by a government that grows ever more totalitarian. An intimate account of contemporary Iran, it is also the moving and wonderfully written story of one family's extraordinary courage in the face of repression.
"This harrowing memoir provides an illuminating glimpse into the security apparatus of one of the world's most repressive countries. Especially timely given recent events throughout the Middle East, this book is recommended for anyone wishing to better understand the workings of a police state."
"What makes Bahari's account so readable is not only his sense of fair play – he tries to understand the motivations of the regime, and of his torturer – but also his keen sense of fun and humour."
The Sunday Times
"Offers an alarming window into the minds of those who rule Iran today... Readers will come away from this intimate, authoritative book with a fuller understanding of Iran, why its green uprising petered out, and why no one should be surprised if it kicks off again."
"A profound, yet intimate insight into modern day Iran, told through Bahari's own and his family's experience of living through it. A wonderful book."
Jon Snow, Channel Four News
"Then They Came for Me is the story of those who fight to inform and enlighten their society. Fortunately, Iran is not only a country of Ahmadinejads and mullahs, the country is also blessed with plenty of Maziar Baharis."
Shirin Ebadi, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize and author of Iran Awakening
"A fascinating walk through Iran's tumultuous recent history. Students of the region will welcome Mr. Bahari's insightful contribution."
Joseph Wilson, former US Ambassador and author of The Politics of Truth
"A superb account... Insightful and brave."
Jane Corbin, journalist and reporter for BBC Panorama
"A beautifully written account of life in Iran, filled with insights not only into the power struggles and political machinations but into the personal, emotional lives of the people living in that complicated country. Maziar Bahari is a brave man and a wonderful storyteller."
Fareed Zakaria, author of The Post-American World
"Maziar Bahari is a visionary reporter, a deep soul, and a breathtakingly beautiful writer. Then They Came for Me will have you aching for the ones you love, furious at the evil of extremism, and inspired by the heroism of one extraordinary family. I can't recommend this book highly enough – it will forever change how you view Iran, your family, and your own capacity for resilience."
Bruce Feiler, author of Walking the Bible and The Council of Dads
"A riveting, brutally honest account, Then They Came for Me is one of the most powerful prison memoirs I have ever read. This haunting and unforgettable book will make you angry at the prison that is today's Iran, and happy that a fine journalist like Maziar Bahari escaped to tell the truth about the regime."
David Ignatius, author of Body of Lies