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Revisiting ‘Not Without My Daughter’ with Mahtob Mahmoody

Mahtob Mahmoody photo
Scott Pohl
Mahtob Mahmoody in her west Michigan home. She'll talk about 'My Name is Mahtob" Thursday at the Schuler book store in the Meridian Mall.

In “Not Without My Daughter,” Betty Mahmoody told the story of how her then-husband took her and her daughter from their Michigan home to Iran and held them captive, and how they escaped to return to the U.S. 

Now, daughter Mahtob Mahmoody has written her own book about her childhood and adult life. We talk with Mahtob Mahoody about “My Name is Mahtob.”

In 1984, a Michigan woman named Betty Mahmoody and her husband Sayed took their young daughter Mahtob to visit his family in Iran for a couple of weeks. While there, Sayed told Betty that he never intended to return to America and that he would never let her return to the United States with Mahtob. He threatened to kill Betty, or separate her from Mahtob forever, if she tried to escape. His vow was to raise Mahtob as a Muslim in Tehran.

For 18 months, Betty and Mahtob were held captive, fearing for their safety and struggling to find a way out. Betty wrote about their captivity and their ultimate escape from Iran in the famous book “Not Without My Daughter,” which later was turned into a movie starring Sally Field.

Now, thirty years after returning to the U.S., Mahtob Mahmoody has written her own book. Current State producer Scott Pohl talked with Mahtob Mahmoody about “My Name is Mahtob.” She'll talk about the book Thursday at the Schuler book store in the Meridian Mall.

Scott Pohl is a general assignment news reporter and produces news features and interviews. He is also an alternate local host on NPR's "Morning Edition."
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