The Riddle of the Sphinx

In reference to the famous riddle on the three stages of the life of man, dear Reader sees Keyvan come of age as a privileged child during the Iran revolution, his escape to America where he attends Princeton as Eric and falls in love with the man he tutors, and his contemplation on his life in law and his marriage (to a woman) and children. Montagu weaves Keyvan / Eric’s tale carefully throughout the fall of the Shah, portraying the fears of the socially select, following Keyvan and his mother as they ride horses under cover of night over treacherous mountain paths, led by shady men of greed. In a dream-like transition, Keyvan is now Eric in Princeton, continuing his privileged life now as an Iranian-American student. Circling back to the beginning, Eric expounds upon the decisions he’s made in his life that have led him to this point where a chance encounter drops him back into his past. Montagu’s writing swirls around the story like fog, as though exposing relevant scenes, an intriguing stylistic choice.