Revolution and tradition are two sides of the same coin in Talinn Grigor's book on Iraninan architecture. It starts 1925 after Reza Pahlavi seized control of the country, but it quickly arcs back in time to Ancient and Medieval Persia. Not that the gouvernment was rejecting modernity. It instead promoted a reconstruction of the past that would aid efforts to make modern Iran an independent nation with an irrefutable claim to existence and power. Prodigious archival research informs Grigor's account of the excavations and discoveries Iranian authorities used to construct monuments to national heroes like Omar Khayyam, an important mathematician and astronomer of the 11th century as well as the author of "Rubaiyat". Grigor also brings immense knowledge to her lively discussion of the modern idiom integrated into such retrospective monuments and buildings. This book is the first in English to study 20th-century Iranian architecture within the historical contexts that shaped its forms and significance. The corpus of photographs will help the many readers unfamiliar with the architectural riches of Iran. Current turbulence and misunderstanding in the Middle East heightens the importance of Grigor's book.