Posts Tagged ‘ afghanistan ’

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

Khaled Houssein

9.5 / 10

For those who have been awed by Khaled Housseini’s first novel “The Kite Runner”, his second masterpiece will astound you. A Thousand Splendid Suns is said by many as paramount of his two novels. To me, though with great difficult to distinguish, I felt more attached to his first work The Kite Runner. But I’m not saying that A Thousand Splendid Suns is a title to be put aside, it is in fact a vital gaffe to not open its enthralling pages.

If The Kite Runner obviously focused its story on the different men of Afghanistan, Hosseini’s following to his first work, A Thousand Splendid Suns then gives way to the women of Afghanistan who are most decrepit and oppressed by the many occurrence in the Afghan land. Unlike from the start of The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns will not give readers a chance to be prepared from the tears and.

The author perceptibly didn’t negate the women of his native land. He, in truth, gave much importance to them as he gave in details what the women were from the monarch-era to the Russian Invasion and the Taliban takeover up to the present day Afghanistan. The world is to be exposed, with A Thousand Splendid Suns, to the experiences women had throughout the degradation of the great Afghanistan they’ve known.
There are two parts of the book where Hosseini focused on the background stories of two different heroines: Laila and Mariam. Both representing two different generations and type of Afghan women: Mariam as the god-fearing, illiterate, conservative, and submissive; while Laila as the educated, liberated, contemporary, and well-opinionated woman of Afghanistan. Both are to experience the cruelty and sadist twist of fate their unrecognizable country will impose on all Afghan women. They are to endure and even though battered will end up victorious as they find hope in each other (the only thread they are to hold onto) that there will be a better Afghanistan for all women and their children.

Today’s Afghanistan has existing women rights group and organizations that are fighting for the place of women’s equality and place in Afghanistan. Let this eye-opener novel be an inspiration to not just Afghan women but to all who are in struggle with social injustices and abuse in different countries.


The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

Kite Runner, Khaled Housseini, fiction, books, afghanistan

9.5 / 10

This first work from Khaled Housseini is definitely one of the best titles out there today. The Kite Runner is one astonishing novel that is written with no highfaluting words and simple writing technique, and yet an impactful masterpiece.

I find The Kite Runner as a representation of Afghanistan and its people. Particularly through Amir, the Pashtun main character who betrayed Hassan, his bestfriend, then finding out on the latter part of the story, as his half Hazara brother. Kite Running is also a symbolism of how the Afghans, including the Housseini, misses their good old times of their country, the years wherein war and violence is unknown to the contented and prosperous cities of Afghanistan.

Like what Afghanistan was before the desolating invasion and war, Amir’s lifestyle was affluent thanks to his rich father who is a well-respected Afghan in Kabul. Baba, Ali’s father, by the way I think characterizes the country’s last king Mohammed Zahir Shah, who is also a person that is deemed also with reverence by his countrymen. He is also called as Baba by Afghanis, as father of the Afghan Nation. He is given much veneration by the author as much as most people reminisce of the old Afghanistan in his rule. Obviously, Baba’s son, Amir, has a name similar to an English translation of “prince”, son of the king.

The pivotal point of the story came when Amir betrayed Hassan of their friendship with cowardice and selfish reasons. Then the incidents that destroyed Afghanistan and its people started. But even fleeing the war-bruised land and having a comfortable life in the U.S., the unpleasant occurrences in his country were nothing compared to what teared down Amir’s conscience. After years of leaving the scourged country of Afghanistan, he made a choice to go back and then to find a way to make up for his mistakes with the help of his father’s closest friend, Rahim Khan.

Rahim Khan, a gentle and compassionate friend of both Baba and Amir, is a bit of a mystery in the story. His character was utilized by the author as a guide and advisor for the father and son characters. The author not saying much of his history and how the friendship with Baba started, the character’s background still remains a mystery to me, even to his very end.

Sohrab, Hassan’s only son has been orphaned by the Taliban and was held captive by Assef, depicted the bruised and tired Afghan people–especially its children, by the unnecessary violence and abuse of the Taliban and the other throbbing episodes that made Afghanistan a battered country.

I can go on and mention all the grief and touching message that I have perceived from the author in the story, but he already succeeded in placing Afghanistan’s story onto my plateau of interest. I felt the cruelty his country and his fellow countrymen experienced, such disturbing reality he has displayed to the world.

The book is going to get you hooked from the very first paragraphs up till the end, you won’t be able to put it down. Though the part that goes to the last chapters a bit slowed my interest, but its not that bad at all.

I wished my reading of this magnificent book didn’t end so soon. I now see myself wanting more of Afghanistan’s story, that’s why I ended up buying Khaled Housseini’s second book: A Thousand Splendid Suns and tuning in to Al Jazeera for the current Afghanistan elections. Like what most Afghans in the world, I too pray that this election be the turning point of change for the country, a change for the better.