Poking around further in the Internet, I found a really neat site that gives news about book publishing, selling, and literacy in Iran. Two things that caught my eye:
1. Publishers and book sellers in Iran don't have to pay tax this year.
2. The Institute for Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults is planning a Satire Contest: "The first satire festival organised by branches of Institute for Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults (KANOON) will be held in Tehran province. Iranian children and young adults who have just learned to write satire will take part in the festival on May 25th, 2007. They will compete in the fields of poetry and story writing in the festival which will also be attended by renowned Iranian satirists. A total of 11 selected participants will be awarded prizes in the Closing Ceremony. Selected entries for the competition were chosen from among 45 works submitted by children and young adults. (May 2007, Leili Hayeri Yazdi, APPREB correspondent)."
What an appealing thought (seriously). Such a change from the cloying sweetness that one sees so often in children's books and writing here (with many exceptions, of course, for instance the Children's Books that Never Were Series at Saints and Spinners. I am just feeling cranky because my son has to read Rainbow Fish for second grade and do a Friendship Project based on it).