Anahita’s Woven Riddle
Tapestry weaver Meghan Nutall Sayres certainly drew upon her art to write Anahita’s Woven Riddle. Her main character, Anahita, is a nomadic weaver living in 19th century Iran. When she is confronted with the possibility of marriage to the leader of her tribe, a repulsive man older than her father, she asks if she can hold a contest to help determine her fate. She weaves a riddle into her marriage carpet and agrees to marry the man who can solve it.
Sayres brings to life the details of Persian culture, interspersing Sufi poetry, romance and adventure with Anahita’s spinning, weaving and dyeing. By the time her carpet is completed and the contest begun, readers are completely invested in finding out who will win her hand. But what Anahita wants most of all is the power to determine her own fate. Readers will have to wait until the end of this fast-paced novel to find out if she succeeds.
Anahita’s Woven Riddle offers a glimpse into a world not many books enter. Sayres does an excellent job developing characters that intrigue and tug at the heart. Ages 12 and up.