Only This Beautiful Moment

Only This Beautiful Moment by Abdi Nazemian tells an important and powerful story about love, healing generational trauma, and accepting each other for who we are. 

Raegan’s book review of Only This Beautiful Moment

“Only This Beautiful Moment” by Abdi Nazemian tells an important and powerful story about love, healing generational trauma, and accepting each other for who we are. 

Three boys on the cusp of adulthood with their lives inextricably linked. Each with a link to the US and Iran. Each falling in love. Each searching for their roots and finding out family secrets. A family marked by tragedy and connected by love.

Profound and moving exploration of 3 generations of boys in Iran

In this profoundly moving young adult novel, “Only This Beautiful Moment” explores the experiences of three generations of boys in an Iranian family, each facing their own unique challenges. Set against the backdrop of Iran in 2019, we follow the openly gay Moud as he embarks on a journey to his ancestral home, grappling with the fear of concealing his true self for the sake of his safety and worrying about how his family will perceive him. 

Meanwhile, in 1978 Tehran, Moud’s father, Saeed, finds himself torn between a potential romance with a mysterious girl and actively participating in street protests during a time of great political unrest. Lastly, in 1939 Los Angeles, we delve into the life of Moud’s grandfather, Bobby, who struggles with concealing his sexuality in a society that expects conformity while also dealing with the pressures of his ambitious stage mother, who dreams of his stardom in Hollywood. 

Dive deep into themes of identity, family, love and societal expectations

Through their interconnected stories, the novel delves deep into themes of identity, family, love, and the complexities of navigating societal expectations. Prepare to be captivated by the emotional depth and resonant storytelling that makes “Only This Beautiful Moment” a truly unforgettable read.

I love how the book switches between three different time periods and POV’s and how it all intertwined to tell a really powerful story.

“When you become a man, be a teacher, a guide. Help young people who are made to feel invisible feel the opposite. Make them feel seen. Without guides and mentors, our community would be lost.”

Only This Beautiful Moment

Discussion Questions

☆ The book explores themes of identity and belonging. How do the characters in the story navigate their identities? What challenges do they face in finding a sense of belonging?

☆ “Only This Beautiful Moment” delves into family dynamics and the complexities of relationships. Discuss the various family relationships portrayed in the book and how they impact the characters’ journeys.

☆ The story touches upon the power of art and creativity as a means of self-expression and healing. How does art play a role in the characters’ lives? How does it influence their personal growth and connection with others?

☆ The book addresses important social issues, such as immigration, discrimination, and LGBTQ+ rights. How does the author explore these topics, and what messages or lessons can we take away from the narrative?

☆ One of the central themes is the concept of love in its various forms. How is love depicted in the story? Discuss the different types of love portrayed and their significance in the characters’ lives.

☆ The narrative weaves between past and present, unraveling the characters’ histories and revealing their secrets. How does this storytelling technique enhance the overall reading experience? Did it deepen your understanding of the characters and their motivations?

☆ The book tackles the concept of forgiveness and redemption. Explore how forgiveness is portrayed in the story, and discuss the impact it has on the characters’ personal growth and relationships.

☆ The setting plays a significant role in the book. How does the city’s atmosphere and culture contribute to the overall narrative? In what ways does the setting shape the characters’ experiences?

☆ The author addresses the theme of self-discovery and the search for personal truth. How do the characters navigate their own paths of self-discovery? Discuss pivotal moments or decisions that led them closer to finding their authentic selves.

☆ The ending of the book leaves certain elements open to interpretation. Without giving away spoilers, discuss your interpretation of the ending and how it resonated with you. Did it provide a satisfying resolution to the characters’ storylines?

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