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Dr. Minou Soumekh Michlin




I Kept Walking opens in 1940s Tehran when a misguided prank leaves three-year-old Minou frozen in fear. Days later, a doctor breaks the news to her mother: “Your daughter has polio.”

To understand why nothing is as it seems—the cause of her polio or why her dutiful Jewish mother, who was married off at 13, thwarted her dream of marriage, Minou must flee Iran and confront the psychological toll of her polio.

I Kept Walking is the audacious account of a bold young woman who was unwilling to be crushed by polio or the prohibitions of a conservative society.

From the labyrinth of narrow alleys in Tehran’s Grand Bazaar to a Jerusalem hospital room, this unforgettable memoir depicts a young woman’s struggle to embrace her culture while defying its taboos.

This immigrant story will resonate with mothers and daughters, Jews and Persians, as well as anyone who has braved the unknown and kept on walking.



A COMPELLING STORY of mothers and daughters and Jews living in a Muslim land" 

Wilma Peebles-Wilkins, Boston University

RIVETING! This story is full of courage, heartache, joy, love, vulnerability and strength.” 

Sheida White, PhD, London

After reading this book, I walked away feeling truly UPLIFTED.” 

Rachel S. Farahnik, Los Angeles

So ENGROSSING, I burnt my dinner!” 

Suham Gabriel,London

Image by Mansour Kiaei

Dr. Minou Soumekh Michlin 


Dr. Minou Soumekh Michlin is a Professor Emeritus of Social Work at Southern Connecticut State University. She worked as a social worker in Tehran’s Jewish ghetto and oversaw day cares across Iran. Minou is married to David Michlin and has two children and five grandchildren. She lives in Beverly Hills, in California


Gali Kronenberg

Design Book

Gali Kronenberg is a writer and book coach. A former Los Angeles Times columnist, Gali has ghostwritten memoirs and nonfiction for a European prime minister and a New York Times bestselling author. His clients’ books have sold to Penguin Random House and HarperCollins and won praise in the New York Times.



Baba Meir (my maternal great-grandfather), dressed in a qaba with gold trim with Baba Rabi (my maternal grandfather). Both are wearing a nezami, a Qajar dynasty military-style hat. Hamadan, 1887.

Baba Rabi, shortly before his murder in Qazvin. The men are wearing nezami. Middle row from left: Naneh Joon Sormeh (my maternal grandmother) wearing her wedding jewelry, a la-sari (a gold ornament worn over the forehead), and a gardan bande ashrafi, a necklace made of gold coins. At a time before nail polish, her fingertips are stained with henna as a mark of beauty. In the middle is Morvarvid Khanom (my maternal grandmother), with family. Hamadan, 1910. *Source: Esthers Children: A Portrait of

Maman (Touba), holding Nasser, and Agha Jahn (Davoud), who appears to be trying to keep Menachem still for the photo, on the second-floor balcony of Baba Moshe’s stately home. 1926.

Maman, nineteen, Hamadan, 1927. Prior to 1919, Iranians didn’t use surnames. Under Reza Shah, who adopts the surname Pahlavi, a law is passed making it mandatory to have a last name.

Agha Jahn (Haji Davoud), Tel Aviv, Israel.

Iranian passport photo of Maman and me, eleven, shortly before our departure for my first surgery in Jerusalem. Tehran, 1953.

Jamshid and me, ages eight and five, at our home on Shah Avenue. Tehran, 1945

The only photo of me in a cast. Left: Nehama, an Israeli girlfriend, and me, twelve, with my brother Menachem’s wife, Chaya. Jerusalem, 1953.

Some sixty friends and relatives came to see me off at Mehrabad Airport on June 4, 1967, my last day living in Iran. From left: Dr. Mahvash Raffi, Louise, Mehrzad, Jacqueline, Me, and Mahin. Yassi is in the front. Tehran.

Me, during a tough year, while studying at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 1964.

Family photo of David and me with our two adult children, their spouses, and our five grandchildren. From top row left: Sherene Michlin, Robert Finkel, Laura Greengold, and Aron Michlin. Middle row, from left: Me with Sherene’s children, Shira, Leora, and Joshua. David with Aron’s children, Ruben and, in front, Helen. Leora’s bat mitzvah, Boston, 2015

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