Pomegranate Soup

Pomegranate Soup

A Novel

Book - 2006
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Beneath the holy mountain Croagh Patrick, in damp and lovely County Mayo, sits the small, sheltered village of Ballinacroagh. To the exotic Aminpour sisters, Ireland looks like a much-needed safe haven. It has been seven years since Marjan Aminpour fled Iran with her younger sisters, Bahar and Layla, and she hopes that in Ballinacroagh, a land of "crazed sheep and dizzying roads," they might finally find a home.

From the kitchen of an old pastry shop on Main Mall, the sisters set about creating a Persian oasis. Soon sensuous wafts of cardamom, cinnamon, and saffron float through the streets-an exotic aroma that announces the opening of the Babylon Café, and a shock to a town that generally subsists on boiled cabbage and Guinness served at the local tavern. And it is an affront to the senses of Ballinacroagh's uncrowned king, Thomas McGuire. After trying to buy the old pastry shop for years and failing, Thomas is enraged to find it occupied-and by foreigners, no less.

But the mysterious, spicy fragrances work their magic on the townsfolk, and soon, business is booming. Marjan is thrilled with the demand for her red lentil soup, abgusht stew, and rosewater baklava-and with the transformation in her sisters. Young Layla finds first love, and even tense, haunted Bahar seems to be less nervous.

And in the stand-up-comedian-turned-priest Father Fergal Mahoney, the gentle, lonely widow Estelle Delmonico, and the headstrong hairdresser Fiona Athey, the sisters find a merry band of supporters against the close-minded opposition of less welcoming villagers stuck in their ways. But the idyll is soon broken when the past rushes back to threaten the Amnipours once more, and the lives they left behind in revolution-era Iran bleed into the present.

Infused with the textures and scents, trials and triumph,s of two distinct cultures, Pomegranate Soup is an infectious novel of magical realism. This richly detailed story, highlighted with delicious recipes, is a delectable journey into the heart of Persian cooking and Irish living.
Publisher: New York : Random House Trade Paperbacks, 2006
ISBN: 9780812972481
Branch Call Number: MEH
Characteristics: 237 p. ;,21 cm


From Library Staff

PoMoLibrary Jul 07, 2015

From our 2015 #80DayRead Adult Summer Reading Club traveler Patricia: 8/10 A Lovely read. I badly want to try pomegranate soup and some of the other recipes. I also want to travel to Ireland.

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PimaLib_MaryG Aug 16, 2016

Three Iranian sisters escape the aftermath of the fundamentalist revolution in their home country to a small village in Ireland and open a cafe where magic may just be one of the many ingredients in their mouth-watering cooking.

PoMoLibrary Jul 07, 2015

From our 2015 #80DayRead Adult Summer Reading Club traveler Patricia: 8/10 A Lovely read. I badly want to try pomegranate soup and some of the other recipes. I also want to travel to Ireland.

ChristchurchLib Dec 17, 2012

"The small Irish village of Ballinacroagh is an insular, isolated place whose residents don't quite know what to make of the three Iranian sisters, refugees from their country's revolution, who have just purchased a former bakery with plans to open a cafe. Though some residents are enticed by the aromas wafting out of the cafe and by the sisters' warm personalities, others side with the town bully, who fears the restaurant will put his pub out of business. Incredibly descriptive - of both the food and the people - this debut includes 13 Persian recipes, and has been compared to Chocolat and Like Water for Chocolate. If you enjoy it, you can meet the Ballinacroagh inhabitants again in Rosewater and Soda Bread." Fiction A to Z December 2012 newsletter http://www.nextreads.com/Display2.aspx?SID=5acc8fc1-4e91-4ebe-906d-f8fc5e82a8e0&N=580458

Mar 26, 2011

The descriptions of the food in this book would make it excellent, even if the story wasn’t. Luckily the story is most excellent. Three sisters escape Iran and open a restaurant in a small Irish town. Some of the residents embrace the sisters and their exotic culinary offerings with an open heart and some do not. But really, who can resist good food? I recommend reading this when you have the time and energy to cook, or at the very least curl up with a cup of very good tea.

Nov 10, 2010

Not a highly complex book but captures a glimpse into the life of 3 sisters living and building a life in Ireland.
The characters are believable and the recipes provided are also a bonus.
Well worth reading.

Aug 03, 2010

Lovely little book. A common story of hardship and final acceptance no matter where it is set. Great recipes.

Jun 26, 2009

Very much enjoyed this easy read. Keeps your interest from beginning to end. Even suitable for teen readers. Not necessary to understand the political/religious history of Iran at all. Very much enjoyed this story. Well written, and although somewhat predictable, it's a great read. The Iranian recipes that are included are well placed, and sound delicious, will have to try them out for sure. Definately worth reading

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