“Listening to Naghma, Mariam remembered the dim glimmer of cold stars and the stringy pink clouds streaking over the Safid-koh mountains that long-ago morning when Nana had said to her, Like a compass needle that points north, a man’s accusing finger always finds a woman. Always. You remember that, Mariam.”
A Thousand Splendid Suns was recommended to me by a friend. I had read The Kite Runner, also by Hosseini, but had no idea what I was in for with A Thousand Splendid Suns. I recommend you read this book because it holds a powerful message and view of a part of the world we do not often see. If you are not familiar with Middle Eastern culture or tradition, do not let that hold you back from reading A Thousand Splendid Suns or any of Khaled Hosseini’s work.
A Thousand Splendid Suns was a compelling journey of two women, Mariam and Laila, in Afghanistan. Mariam and Laila’s upbringing could not be more different. Mariam was raised in poverty, she was victim to the social hierarchy and tradition but loved nevertheless by her father. Laila was the youngest of her family who was adored by her father but neglected by her mother. They are brought together by the ugliness of war and marriage. Their story is one of the love, survival, family, and power of sisterhood.
TBH this is not a happy story, a bittersweet one if that. A Thousand Splendid Suns gives you a chance to develop an appreciation for a part of the world that is often seen in a negative light. I found myself enjoying the story even though it challenged me. Hosseini has a talent for weaving powerful messages within realistic fiction. Mariam and Laila will change the way you look at the world. Hopefully, you find time to add A Thousand Splendid Suns to your reading list.