A Thousand Splendid Suns

by Khaled Hosseini

This 2007 novel is the successor to Hosseini’s debut novel, THE KITE RUNNER. It spans 50 years and focuses on the lives and relationship of two Afghan women, Mariam and Laila. The two are separated by a generation in age and a world of difference in terms of upbringing. Their lives intersect when Laila is forced to accept a marriage proposal from Mariam’s abusive husband, Rasheed.

This book doesn’t have the emotional power of THE KITE RUNNER. The continuity of the story gets lost i the series of vignettes the author uses to tell the story. The story is a good critique of a society where marriages are arranged at an early age and health care for women is depressingly lacking.

The Author

Khaled Hosseini (1965 – ) is an Afghan-born American.  His father was diplomat and the family was living in France when they applied for asylum in the United States.  He didn’t return to Afghanistan until 2003, an experience he described as being like a tourist in his own land.

He trained and worked as a physician, an occupation he describes as being like an arranged marriage for him.(He completed a residency in internal medicine at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.)

His first novel was published in 2003 and became a best seller and later a movie. His third novel, And the Mountains Echoed, was released last May.


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