Join us



Shokoofeh Azar

Shokoofeh Azar

Shokoofeh Azar moved to Australia as a political refugee in 2011. She is the author of essays, articles, and children’s books, and is the first Iranian woman to hitchhike the entire length of the Silk Road. The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree, originally written in Farsi, was shortlisted for Australia’s Stella Prize for Fiction and is her first novel to be translated into English.

All Shokoofeh Azar's books

Upcoming events

Shokoofeh Azar’s The Enlightenment of The Greengage Tree is on the shortlist of 2020 International Booker Prize.

Latest reviews

  • “It’s a gripping human tragedy as much as a beautifully executed exercise in escapism.”
    — I Can Only Blame Myshelf, Aug 26 2020
  • “Particularly striking is Azar’s haunting portrayal of Sohrab’s days in solitary confinement... The novel is packed with such irresistible parables... a novel relevant to our times and a compelling read”
    — The Daily Star, Aug 20 2020
  • Click here to watch the video.
    — Edinburgh Book Festival, Aug 19 2020
  • “(...) Overall, I felt this is a stunning novel which is full of passion and romance. It's also very effective in giving voice to those whose stories aren't accounted for in most history books. It makes me want to know more about the country's history as well as its culture...
    — Lonesome Reader, Aug 18 2020
  • The shortlisted translators of the 2020 International Booker Prize in conversation with Georgina Godwin.
    — Pen Transmissions, Aug 18 2020
  • In Iran, reading and writing are steeped in peril and never to be indulged in lightly. Reading constitutes a high class of treason: along with your books, you may lose your house and even your life. The act of reading, it would seem, echoes other acts of subversion against whichever...
    — Asymptote, Jul 31 2020
  • This is a fiercely clever work of fiction. Magical realism’s reach in literature is long and persistent. Its use as a device through which to filter the horrors of totalitarian regimes, whether in Latin America or Europe, is compelling: think of the better novels...
    — New Statesman, Jul 15 2020
  • After the 1979 Islamic revolution, a bereaved family seek solace in the ancient forests of northern Iran, in Shokoofeh Azar’s International Booker-shortlisted novel Revolutionary Guards pull a family off the road to check for forbidden items in their silver Buick; they...
    — The Guardian, Jun 5 2020
  • “It takes a special writer – and Azar is one such – to avoid faltering when the harshest experiences are interlaced with scenes of fantastical interventions in the routine experiences of the characters. The lives created within this novel and the conditions to which they...
    — The Irish Times, Mar 28 2020
  • “The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree is a hugely ambitious book, blending familial drama with the history of a nation during a conflicted era. At times, those shifts between the micro and the macro—and back again—can be dizzying, but I appreciated Azar’s sense of...
    — Words without Borders, Feb 17 2020
  • Written by a political refugee who moved to Australia, a novel in which the ghost of a 13-year-old girl narrates her family's flight from their home in Tehran to a small village in hopes of preserving their intellectual freedom.
    — The New York Times, Feb 17 2020
  • Although the page facing the title of Azar’s first novel to be translated into English clearly states, “Translated from the Farsi,” the linguistic enabler remains anonymous; the publisher’s official line is, “the translator of this book has asked not to be named out...
    — Booklist, Nov 15 2019