From a Persian Tea House: Travels in Old Iran - Michael    Carroll
Originally published in 1960 it's an account of a British guy's travels through Iran. An interesting read. A couple of times when old attitudes jarred. But it brings a sense of the social change and pressure in Iran, while still being primarily a travel book, full of description, some lightly shared research, and people. Great writing, too.

I love a quote from an unnamed guidebook: "The last Persian lion was seen -- and naturally shot -- by an Englishman, in 1931."