Author: Khaled Hosseini
Mariam is only fifteen when she is sent to Kabul to marry Rasheed. Nearly two decades later, a friendship grows between Mariam and a local teenager, Laila, as strong as the ties between mother and daughter. When the Taliban take over, life becomes a desperate struggle against starvation, brutality and fear. Yet love can move people to act in unexpected ways, and lead them to overcome the most daunting obstacles with startling heroism.
I had read this book a long time ago when I had read it from a library. And It had somehow stuck in my mind ever since. The feelings that the book had given me were still fresh in my mind, although I had forgotten a major part of the story. So, I decided to buy it myself, and re read it.
I think in a way it was good that I had forgotten the story, because the intensity of it hit me again with an equal force, so, at the end I just had to put the book down and stare at the walls.
Khaled Hosseini has really outdone himself. I do believe this is a better book in terms of writing efforts than the Kite Runner (Book Review if the Kite Runner can be found here). Although both are fantastic reads, I feel that as a writer, it is somewhat easier to write a believable character of the same sex. But, as a man, to write a story from two different female perspectives, in such a believable and beautiful way, deserves a standing ovation. What the kite runner did to male friendships, thousand splendid suns did for female friendships.
The first half of the Novel focuses on Mariam, her upbringing as a child born out of wedlock, her struggles to understand her father, and the fact that she was married off to a much older man at a young age. The next part of the book concentrates on Laila, her modern upbringing, her book loving, open minded dad, her best friend and crush, and in turns of affair getting married to an older man. It was interesting to read how Marian and Laila reacted differently to the same situation.
No of pages: 367 (but, you fly through the pages in no time)
A beautiful read, which almost every level of reader would enjoy!