Clee DeVoss, a High School girl from a small Kansas town has the dream of traveling the world and visiting exotic places. After finishing high school, she meets a handsome and suave Iranian student and falls in love. Against all dire warnings, they get married and produce two little girls. Clee and her daughters are invited by the husband’s family to go live with them in Iran while her husband remains in the States to finish his college degree.
Clee goes to Iran to live with her in-law’s. The father-in-law rules the family with an iron fist. Clee has always worked and enjoyed working, but now she is not allowed to work and must stay home with the children.
After a year, the father-in-law agrees to allow Clee and her sister-in-law return to the states to finish their degrees.
Back in the states, Clee discovers that her husband is working only halfheartedly on his degree and has become deeply involved in Iranian student groups and politics. They move several times, to different states, different colleges. During this period, Clee and her Iranian husband have a strained relationship. Her skirts and her hair are too short, the children are too obstreperous and he can't study. There is great stress on the marriage.
Finally Clee finishes her degree in education and her sister-in-law finishes her doctorate in microbiology. They had lived together during the college experience and mostly away from their husbands. They have become great friends, like sisters, and they return to Iran.
They finally win the approval of the father-in-law to work: the sister-in-law as a lab scientist in microbiology and Clee as an instructor, teaching English as a second language to the Shah’s elite jet pilots.
Clee’s husband is still going to college in the states, and still deeply involved in Iranian politics, while she is living in Iran with her Iranian family and teaching. After, several years, Clee meets an American man who has passionately vowed to never again get involved with any woman. He is in Iran temporarily to help install a large-scale computer for the Shah’s Air Force. Even though it was not their intent, they meet and fall in love.
She comes to the States. Her husband is still mired in Iranian politics. She divorces her husband and marries the American man. Her new husband gets a foreign service assignment in Iran and they return to Iran, but Clee’s divorce is not recognized in Iran nor is her American passport: she is still Iranian according to Iranian law. Also, the children’s entry and exit permits are still under control of the grandfather or the father, divorced or not.
Problems abound, but are dealt with. They finish the three-year Iranian assignment and over the next three decades, are given more foreign assignments in Holland, Germany, and China. They and the children, have an amazing fairytale life.
In 2000 Clee is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Clee fights the disease with ferocity. To help her mind, she enrolls in writing courses. Over the next three years, she writes many life stories for her writing assignments. Collectively, they comprise her partial memoir. Her husband was not aware of the extent of her writing. She slowly loses her cognition and dies in 2013.
Her husband finds her stories on her computer and publishes them, extending the overall story and filling in gaps. Through it all, Clee paints Iran, the country, and its people, in a positive light.