Home | Posts RSS | Comments RSS | Login

book review: "A Thousand Splendid Suns"...

Thursday, June 30, 2016
... written by Khaled Hosseini, who is also the author of "The Kite Runner," (made into a well received movie). I read the one reviewed here after reading the other. "The Kite Runner" is about a couple of  young boys in Afghanistan, told in retrospect by a one who is now an adult. He shares the story of two children, one from a well to do father, raised in privilege, and the other from a poor single parent. Both books were written by a man who obviously knows the culture and circumstances of life in Kabul well, even though the author lives in California, according to the publisher's information.

The "Splendid Suns" book is about a pair of disparate young women who end up being married to the same misogynistic man. Living in a culture where women have little recognition, little value, little voice in society, and are considered less than second class. Though the women came from vastly different backgrounds, they soon discovered they had much in common.

During the Russian invasion/occupation, the second young woman, Lalia, was injured. She was rescued, and began living with the childless couple, Rasheed and Miriam. Lalia was homeless, her family all died, and she was desperate, felt she had no choice but to accept the proposal to become a second wife. The three began living together in a house with a man who was demanding and demeaning, especially in that environment where women are considered property, and can be readily disposed of with little or no consequence.

It is a tale of the struggles of daily life under difficult circumstances, relating how the women who began their life together at odds, filled with anger, hurt and resentment learned the value of friendship. In time they became devoted sister-wives, and accomplices in their efforts to survive, defend each other against the forceful aggression and humiliations of Rasheed. A man who was raised in a culture that taught him to believe women were worthless, and did not warrant respect.

As you read and see the relationship grow and blossom between the two women, struggling in that time of constantly feeling under the watchful eyes of first the Russian invaders, then the Taliban enforcers, you see the devotion they have for each other grow into a precious gift. Women who were in a hopeless situation struggling to cope with unbearable circumstances, horrific personal loss, unimaginable emotional pain and hardship. But learning to lean on each other for comfort, support, encouragement and the love that sisterhood brings.

Though you read of the hardship of life in difficult circumstances within a war zone, where there seems to be no end to bombings, paranoia, armed men looking for minor infractions walking the streets with impunity, there is a sense of hope. The characters are filled with optimism and a desire to be a small part of improving the lives of the citizens of the war torn city of Kabul. Even though it is filled with the horrors of war, a country in chaos, it is a story of optimism.

0 comments to book review: "A Thousand Splendid Suns"...:

Post a Comment