New Young Adult Novel Teaches Readers to Look Beyond the Surface

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Author Simin Tirgari delivers thought-provoking novel that examines prejudice and the redeeming power of love

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The black cat has a long and winding history. In several cultures, including the British and Japanese, the black cat symbolizes good luck. However, for American culture, the black cat is synonymous with evil and bad luck. In her new young adult novel Color of the Heart (published by iUniverse), author Simin Tirgari delves into this complicated mythology as she tells the story of 10-year-old Sara and her strident attempts to persuade others to drop their preconceived notions of right and wrong.

When a black kitten enters Sara’s world unexpectedly, she falls in love with it. But when Sara’s happiness is overshadowed by her grandmother’s hatred toward her kitten, she is crestfallen. When her grandmother’s hatred and prejudice is shared by others in the community, Sara turns from patient to angry, from sweet to vengeful. Her friends and family blame the black cat for Sara’s change in demeanor, a move that strengthens their grievances against the feline. But when the cat shatters their stereotype through a courageous and selfless act, they are forced to reexamine their thoughts and ideas.

A thoughtful meditation on the power of the constructed image, Color of the Heart provides young readers well-drawn characters and an interesting plot that develops in surprising ways.

“In a world that is plagued with prejudice and intolerance, this book conveys themes which many young readers may witness or experience in their own lives,” says Tirgari. “I hope that young readers will find it foremost entertaining and also intriguing.”

About the Author
Born in Tehran, Iran, Dr. Simin Tirgari obtained her Ph.D. in molecular microbiology in Edinbugh University, Scotland in 1978. Due to Iranian revolution she was forced to leave Iran. Then in order to support her children, she worked at universities of several different countries, her final move occurred in 1982, when she came to the U.S.A to work at the Johns Hopkins University. She has lived in Baltimore ever since. She has published in several scientific journals and also several fiction and nonfiction stories in her native Farsi.

iUniverse, an Author Solutions, Inc. self-publishing imprint, is the leading book marketing, editorial services, and supported self-publishing provider. iUniverse has a strategic alliance with Indigo Books & Music, Inc. in Canada, and titles accepted into the iUniverse Rising Star program are featured in a special collection on iUniverse recognizes excellence in book publishing through the Star, Reader’s Choice, Rising Star and Editor’s Choice designations—self-publishing’s only such awards program. Headquartered in Bloomington, Indiana, iUniverse also operates offices in Indianapolis. For more information or to publish a book, please visit or call 1-800-AUTHORS. For the latest, follow @iuniversebook on Twitter.


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