Office—113 Brighton Ct., Chapel Hill, NC 27516. E-mail—[email protected]
Children's author and publisher. Nur Publications, Chapel Hill, NC, founder, 2005.
Middle East Book Award honorable mention, 2007, and Storytelling World Resource Award Honor designation, 2008, both for The Rich Man and the Parrot.
The Hungry Cat (in Persian), illustrated by Christopher Downie, Nur Publications (Chapel Hill, NC), 2005.
(Reteller) Rumi, The Rich Man and the Parrot, illustrated by Ande Cook, Albert Whitman (Morton Grove, IL), 2007.
Suzan Nadimi retells a traditional Persian story in The Rich Man and the Parrot. Based on a work by Mevlana Jalal ad-Din Rumi, the thirteenth-century poet known as Rumi, the book focuses on a talking parrot that is owned by a wealthy merchant. Because the bird desires freedom, it asks the man to release it, but the man declines; for him, the parrot is his most prized possession. When the merchant travels to India on business, the parrot asks that he convey a message to his parrot relatives in a nearby jungle. The greeting is a special one, and when the merchant repeats it to the jungle birds, they immediately fall from the trees as if dead. When the caged parrot is informed of their response, it, too, falls down in its cage like a stone. The owner then opens the cage to remove his deceased parrot, whereupon the bird flutters back to life and soars off to freedom. Although Catherine Threadgill wrote in School Library Journal that she was unimpressed by the book's illustrations and turn-of-the-twentieth-century setting, she concluded of Nadimi's work that her "simple adaptation of an ancient Middle Eastern parable reads easily and sends a salient message." In Booklist, Hazel Rochman called The Rich Man and the Parrot "attractive," adding that the author's "simple" story about a "small trickster" "will have strong appeal for children." A Kirkus Reviews writer dubbed Nadimi's retelling "an easy-to-understand allegory," and in Publishers Weekly a critic described the book as "a sprightly, elegant retelling" of Rumi's classic tale.
In addition to The Rich Man and the Parrot, Nadimi works to help parents of Islamic heritage teach Persian to their American-born children. Toward that end, she helped found Nur Publications in 2005, and has published a Persian-language picture book titled The Happy Cat.
Biographical and Critical Sources
Booklist, April 1, 2007, Hazel Rochman, review of The Rich Man and the Parrot, p. 54.
Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 2007, review of The Rich Man and the Parrot.
Publishers Weekly, April 15, 2007, review of The Rich Man and the Parrot, p. 51.
School Library Journal, April, 2007, Catherine Threadgill, review of The Rich Man and the Parrot, p. 124.
Nur Publications Web site,http://www.nurpublications.com/ (March 28, 2008).