This second volume of Marjane Satrapi's autobiographical tale focuses on her adolescence and young adulthood. After being sent to Vienna to study, she tries to find her place in the world. She feels like an outsider among the Europeans, but she meets a variety of people, including artists and students who engage her thinking. She also drinks and smokes and falls in love. Finally, Marjane misses Iran too much and returns to her homeland to see what has changed, to try to fit in, and also, it turns out, to get married. But can she truly go home after being out in the world?
Obviously, Persepolis 2 has a more adult bent than the first volume. Satrapi talks about her work and the differences between working on the Persepolis books in this interview. This long interview with Bart Beaty also explores both books in great depth.
This sequel has been adapted into an Academy Award nominated animated motion picture that spans both books. It has also won multiple prizes from the Angoulême International Comics Festival. As for reviews, it has been well received, though perhaps not as enthusiastically as the first book. Boris Kachka acknowledged that it is more difficult to positively portray childhood than adolescence and wrote that "the simplicity of Satrapi’s work may be what makes it universal." Luc Sante called the book "wildly charming." In a different light, Johanna Draper Carlson found this volume "disjointed, tawdry, and unfocused" compared to the first.
Persepolis 2 was published by Pantheon. A preview is available from Amazon.com.