Wednesday, June 12, 2013


A taste of exotic ancient Persia, both literally and figuratively, is on the menu on Monday, July 1 at 7 p.m. when the Mark Twain House and Museum rolls out a multi-colored Oriental carpet to welcome Tessa Afshar, an award-winning Connecticut author.  The event will launch Afshar's new book "Harvest of Gold,"
a prequel to her award-winning "Harvest of Rubies," set in ancient Persia and telling the story of Sarah, a young Jewish scribe, who has recently been wed in an arranged marriage to Darius, a lord of the court.  How will she secure his love and also help to rebuild the sacred walls of the city of Jerusalem?

Tessa Afshar spent the first fourteen years of her life in her native Iran, a member of a non-practicing Muslim family.  Moving to England, she attended boarding school and gained a love for reading.  Subsequently, she traveled to America and earned a Master of Divinity from Yale University and converted to Christianity.

In her intriguing love story, she will take her readers to another world, weaving together historical and Biblical truths, helping her heroine Sarah discover her worthiness as a human being.

The evening will include a reading from "Harvest of Gold" as well as a Persian/English excerpt from Mark Twain's "Tom Sawyer." Also on display will be the museum's "mosque lamp" which had hung in the foyer of the Mark Twain House before being damaged.  The book launch is intended to raise funds for the lamp's costly repairs.

Author Lucinda Secrest McDowell will interview Ms. Afshar and moderate a question and answer session, while the museum's chief curator, Patti Phillippon, will discuss the mosque lamp.

Space is limited for this free event.  RSVP to and inform her if you would like to reserve "Harvest of Gold" for purchase. ($14.99, River North)

This Persian Tea/Reception will be held at the Mark Twain House and Museum, 351 Farmington Avenue, Hartford.  Enter an enticingly different world and enjoy Persian tea and savory delights with Tessa Afshar presiding over the samovar.

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