Book Reviews


Reviews for: One More Mountain

by Mansur Nurdel with Jeannette Moninger

This book is the inspirational true story of a young man willing to risk it all.

As an American, I was hardly aware of the Baha’i faith at all, let alone understand the complicated relationship the Baha’i followers have with Muslim countries, especially Iran where Baha’i’s have been persecuted for decades.

Mansur’s story is one of a young man fleeing his homeland in search of religious freedom. It takes a tremendous amount of courage to leave everything behind for a future that is hopeful, but uncertain. When his journey doesn’t go according to plan, Mansur relies on instinct, sharp intellect, and perseverance to navigate his path to freedom. He details his treacherous voyage, trekking for days through the Iranian mountains in frigid temperatures, often at night, and always on alert for hidden dangers such as wolves and trackers.

As harrowing as his tale of escape may have been, it’s ultimately a heart-warming story about a man who stayed true to his faith, made friends along the way, and ultimately, achieved the American Dream.”
—Dr. Sarah Moore


Memoirs are not my normal choice of book, but Mansur’s story was an exception. He bares a lot to the readers, from childhood mischief to the dark horrors of beatings and corpses.

This is a story that has long needed to be told, and to be shared beyond Bahá’í friends. This is a story that will leave you in tears, feeling nauseated, and burning with rage at the injustices of the world, as well as laughing at quick turns of wit and delighting in his successes, because despite—or perhaps because of—all he has suffered, Mansur is successful.

I implore anyone looking to read this book, and understand that everything Mansur described of his life in Iran is still happening today, if a little different. But maybe don’t read it all in one sitting, like I did, and definitely keep a bottle of water and a pack of tissues on hand.“
—Tammy Capp


A story of resilience and faith

It is easy to become numb to the endless, screaming headlines that give us sound bites of history in the making. But it is the power of story that helps us connect and regain our humanity. In this memoir, Mansur Nurdel took me to Iran before and after Ayatollah Khomeini came to power. Through his eyes I witnessed a country at a pivotal moment of change. I experienced the religious persecution of the Baha’is and walked in his shoes, step by agonizing step over the frozen mountains to freedom into Turkey. I started to understand the high cost of becoming a refugee who leaves behind culture, family and friends. And I marveled at the incredible resilience of the human spirit that this man demonstrated as he tackled a foreign language and moved forward without bitterness to build his life in a new land. This is a story of triumph and hope.”

—Karen Mings 


 An inspiring and motivational story illustrating the power of Faith!

I read this book from the perspective of a Christian-raised American who became a Baha’i many years ago. As such, like all Baha’is, I am aware of what our Iranian Baha’I friends have suffered and continue to suffer at the hands of the current fanatic Iranian government, a government which is not true to its Moslem peace-loving principles. The story of these three brave Iranian Baha’is is both heart-warming and heart-rending. The author poignantly shares the desperation and boundless faith these three men demonstrated as they overcame all obstacles to secure religious freedom, one of the essential principles of the Baha’i Faith. Reading this story has increased my awareness, on a more personal level, of the bond all of us, as members of one human family, share in our efforts to be true to our basic beliefs.”
—Betty Ann Redson



 An important and inspiring story 

Heartbreaking and inspiring at the same time. This is such an important story that needs to be shared. I hadn’t heard of the Baha’i faith nor the horrific human rights violations until this book. The authors did a great job relaying this story in a way that is easy to read and digest, engaging throughout and informative. A must read!

—Christian L.


Amazing story, such an inspiring journey 


A binge-worthy, powerful story of triumph and overcoming incredible odds. A must read !

“Mansur Nurdel’s telling of his life story is a page-turner. He took me along his journey, providing me insight into his cautious fight for his beliefs and treacherous journey to create a new life. I could literally feel his joys, sorrows, pain and determination from cover to cover. His triumph over extreme oppression is a story worth reading. You can’t help but immerse yourself in Nurdel’s life growing up in Iran as a person of Baha’i faith where daily persecution and death occurred to many as a result of their beliefs. The vulnerability he shares throughout each chapter left me in shock, awe and with complete respect. I was taken along his ‘expedition’ of almost 14 days in the most extreme winter conditions literally climbing over a mountain as he found his way to Turkey and then to the U.S. where he landed in Wisconsin where he knew no one, didn’t speak the language and was far removed from family, friends and his business. Here, he found himself doing a menial job trying to survive. Seeing potential in him, Nurdel’s boss took him under his wing, encouraging him to pursue a college degree.

Determination, grit and sheer willpower propels Nurdel to a life he could only dream of in Iran. Along the way, he experiences a brush with a well-known serial killer, hardship, the death of many important people in his life, a love story made for the movies, a doctorate degree in optometry, two amazing children and reuniting after decades of missing his family”.

—Lorrie G


Hidden heroes amoung us

“I’ve been a patient of Dr. “Dell’s” for over 20 years, and never knew more than that he was a wonderful provider, taking very special care of my daughters and me throughout the years. When I got a notification about his book, I was intrigued in the way that one is when someone they are acquainted with does something that takes them out of their familiar context. I was aware of his success as an optometrist, businessman and real estate investor, but had never asked about his background or his story. “One More Mountain” was a revelation! To read about the poverty, oppression, danger and extreme physical ordeal he endured just to get to the US, was daunting enough. But then to learn of his focus and perseverance while he built such a generous and successful life and practice starting from nothing in such a short time was stunning! I will forever think of this modest and gracious man as an unsung hero and model of what we should all strive to be”.

—Cyd Petre 


Awe Inspiring Story of Escape from Religious Persecution 

“This book recounts the author’s amazing escape from the religious persecution and resulting hardships suffered from a very young age until his perilous, on-foot flight over mountains in winter at 24 years old. I have known, for many years, about the pain and suffering experienced by the Baha’i’s in Iran, but until reading Mansur’s remarkable story did I truly understand their plight. Only his death-defying determination, courage, resilience, and love allowed him to overcome the hardships and severe difficulties experienced as he and two friends trudged over mountain paths in winter to finally reach their destinations of Turkey, and eventually, America. Mansur’s well written and inspiring story of his life’s journey had me turning the pages with excitement and emotion while engendering in me a greater appreciation for the religious freedom I have had my whole life”.

—Mary E. Grushka 


A riveting story of hope, courage, faith and survival

“Heartbreaking and compelling, One More Mountain is a book that is hard to put down. Author Mansur Nurdel tells the story of his escape from the draconian and brutal treatment of members of the Baha’i faith after the Islamic Revolution in Iran. Surviving a treacherous trek through the mountains during winter, the author eventually immigrates to the United States. What a he has to tell! Truly inspiring and revealing to those immigrants seeking asylum and to Americans as well”.

—Anita M.


A perilous escape from Iran’s decades long persecution of members of the Baha’i Faith 

“This autographical book carefully describes key elements in the life of Mansur Nurdell, a member of the Baha’i Faith, from his earliest years in his home in Haravan, the bullying, taunts and very real dangers he and his family endured simply because they were Baha’is. This subsequently led him and two friends on a perilous 13-day escape through the Zagros mountains in the dead of winter. His reasons for leaving Iran are clear and unambiguous. Faith, determination and fortitude enabled these three young men to escape Iran safely if somewhat battered. Mansur’s time as a refugee in Turkey, his eventual arrival in America, and his success as a Doctor of Optometry are truly inspirational. The section detailing how he met and married is clearly written from a heart filled with love”.

—Mark H. Rossman 


This book is powerful 

 “This book is powerful. On More Mountain is the story of three Baha’i Iranian friends in search of the freedom we take for granted in the United Stated. Strong willed does not begin to describe Mansur’s life journey in his memoir. Inspiring and motivational!!! A must read for everyone”.

—Mark W.


Wonderful book !!! 

This book is a wonderful insight into one man’s journey and the horrific events that took place. This story will make you cry and laugh.
Makes you very thankful to live in America and be free. It will open your eye’s to the atrocities that occurred”. 

—Christy W.


 Faith and perseverance through incredible hardship creating a man of integrity, honor, and success 

An incredible story that shed light on the internal conflicts of Iran and other countries that most Americans should read. Our United States has internal conflicts but… nothing here compares to what Mansur Nurdel experienced and still endures with the suffering his family, friends and fellow Baha’i. With a beautiful ending of the American Dream realized”

—Tamera H. 


Highly recommend this inspiring and heroic adventure

This deeply touching and inspiring autobiographical account by Mansur Nurdel (with Jeannette Moninger) reads like a thrilling novel. Mansur describes his escape from a life of persecution in Iran due to his Baha’i Faith and his struggles to create a new life in the U.S. In the foreword, he anchors the story in the context of the recent immigration ban in the U.S. and its impact on refugees. During his childhood and youth in Iran, Mansur stayed active in the Baha’i community even when it endangered his life. He describes in vivid detail his terrifying experiences climbing the Zagros Mountains of Iran into Turkey with two friends, pursued by enemies, with no idea where they were going, how long it would take, or what they would need to endure along the way. His determination to learn a new language and culture and go on to become a successful doctor, entrepreneur, and father is uplifting. When I met Mansur in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in about 1990, I was a new Baha’i, and he impressed me with his devotion, kindness, and knowledge—but I didn’t know this amazing story about his background until now. I highly recommend this book to everyone I know. I’m grateful to Mansur for his diligent work with Jeannette to share this wonderful story!.”

—Amy Renshaw 


I couldn’t put it down !

One More Mountain is a brilliantly written true story of a man who left the only home he’d ever known, for a better life. It left me wanting a sequel, a prequel, a wiki page, just MORE of what I had read. I hope we hear more about Mansur, his life stories, and others like him.



An inspirational memoir of what is possible

The moment you begin reading One More Mountain, you are taken on a journey. My wife and I found this story to be tremendously inspirational. The book is easy to read and the author’s tone and style is very genuine. His story is uplifting and shows that nothing can stop a determined dreamer.

—Jerome M


An inspiration on so many levels from beginning to end

“This book is a wonderful read, a compelling story, and a remarkable testimony to the power of the human spirit. A deep allegiance to faith and family compels Mansur to endure true-to-life challenges which are beyond the ordinary person’s imagination. To be able to put some of the horrors into comprehensible perspectives without an ugly sense of malice towards his oppressors shows the impressive skills of the writers.



 Inspiring story of hope, courage and faith 

“One More Mountain” is a story about one man’s determination, perseverance, and faith. The author (Dr. Dell) climbed up and down the pathless Zagros mountains in severe snowstorms during a cold winter, almost losing his life. He was determined to get to Turkey, seeking asylum. Even after arriving in Turkey, then in America with a determination to make his dream come true, he still continued to tackle one mountain (life challenges) after another. With complete trust in God and steadfast faith, he has succeeded in making his dream come true (becoming a doctor) and enriched the lives of many people. This book is such an eye opener. Dr. Dell’s story helps us truly appreciate our religious freedom and many opportunities we are given in this country. After reading this story, your outlook on life will change for sure. One More Mountain is a must read for everyone.

—Saori T


A well written and heartfelt story of strength and perseverance

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was so interesting learning about the authors life in Iran, and what he and his family had to endure. I couldn’t put the book down reading about what he and his companions had to go through to escape Iran. I laughed and I cried hearing what he had to go through arriving in America. I was so impressed with the authors determination and perseverance, and how successful he and his wonderful family have become. I would highly recommend this book”. 

—Patty Weis 


An inspiring memoir 

On a personal level, I have dealt with some unique struggles. While I do not wish for others to experience suffering, I find that I can appreciate when someone knows what it is like to try to achieve something when it feels like the world is against you. It’s so incredibly difficult in this country to survive without familial support, and I am impressed when anyone manages to achieve this.

Dr. Nurdel’s autobiography covers his life as a persecuted religious minority in Iran, and more importantly, his escape and struggles to learn English and become a doctor. As someone born and raised in the US, I know very little of the Baha’i faith, so this memoir was a good introduction to the basic tenets of this more progressive religion. I do feel it would be a good book to add to a high school curriculum, I think students could benefit from a book like this.

I was deeply impressed with Dr. Nurdel’s ability to be vulnerable and share his story without necessarily making me uncomfortable. It is very well written and a book I will keep on my shelf”. 




 Inspiring page turner 

I read this book in a day because I was so captivated by this inspiring memoir. The unexpected journey Dr. Nurdel and his friends endured to flee religious persecution in Iran had me at a loss of words. This book is so heart-felt and reads as if someone is sitting across the table telling you their story. This impactful memoir sheds light on religious persecution in Iran, the lengths many have taken to seek freedom, and the challenges that still remain once that freedom is gained”. 

—Kindle Customer 



 Spanning heartache and hope 

One More Mountain is Mansur Nurdell’s incredible story of escape from, and triumph over, the constant oppression and danger he faced as a Baha’i going up in Iran. His story sheds light on the generational and daily abuses his family endured – from people in their own village – spurred by the suspicion and lies about the Baha’is generated by those in positions of power. By the time he was in his 20’s, he faced no choice but to flee his homeland. The story of his escape is gripping! It also illuminates his resilience and fortitude, where a commitment to the peaceful principles of his Faith have led him to great success here in the United States. I would highly recommend this book, and am extremely grateful to Mr. Nurdell for bravely sharing his story. I hope you read this book and share it widely!” 

—Jill B. Meadows 


Amazing read 

Very informative and well written”. 

—Erin M. 



 Spectacular Story Telling

This book drew me in on page one and kept me hooked until I finished it. The story is incredibly well-written and the details easily come to life with great use of real-life examples and lifelong memories. I felt like I understood the despair of persecution and fear but also the hope of family and faith, I highly recommend this book to anyone — especially those who make take freedom for granted. What a story of triumph!

—Julia Walsh



 “I have been a patient of Dr Dell (Mansur Nurdel) for almost 20 years. He has monitored my eye health referring me to eye surgeons as needed. His excellent performance as a Doctor pales in comparison to what his book has done for my soul and spiritual life. My long term outlook for every human being on earth improved dramatically while reading and absorbing the contents of CLIMB ONE MORE MOUNTAIN . If every person on earth read this book with an open mind the atmosphere worldwide would take a huge leap forward. Thank you Mansur Nurdel

—Amazon reader


A harrowing account of survival and perseverance

 “Mansur has an incredible life story that isn’t often heard by those of us born in the US, which is partly why it’s so compelling and is one that we can all benefit from knowing. Everyone wants a chance at life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and his life’s lessons are a reminder of this, and also that human rights are inherent to everyone and why they must be protected. This is a harrowing account of survival and perseverance from the cultural and political unrest stemming from the Islamic Revolution, and later how he was able to eventually thrive here in Colorado, have a family, build a medical practice and help others in need.”



Beautifully written; Unbelievable journey to freedom   


Wow! This book will give anyone a lot to think about and will certainly stir up some feelings of gratefulness. I learned so much about the Baha’i faith – and was so shocked and saddened to read about the persecution that these Baha’i followers endure under Islamic rule. The terrible irony is that this faith stresses unity of the human race. Mansur’s grueling escape from Iran will keep you turning the pages to find out what happened next. A beautifully written memoir that everyone should read!

—Colorado Karma