These days, war and terrorism has been engrained so deep in our social and emotional fabric that we have invented new labels for humans who are directly inflicted with the consequences of war. Labels like ‘refugees‘, ‘casualties‘, ‘martyrs’ etc. drain out the human pain and suffering that entails while a war is waged, howsoever noble the cause maybe. We have already seen graphic images of a toddler washed ashore in Europe, boats of people returned at the borders of safer countries, children crossing seas and oceans to reach safety etc.
I ordered this book to have an insight into what life was like in Afghanistan before the war and how it changed during the war. As I went through the pages, a devastating and painfully honest tale engulfed me on a poignant roller coaster ride.
The societies of pre-war Afghanistan with its Asian neighbours like India, Pakistan etc. couldn’t be more congruent – Social hierarchy, tense ethnic friction, patriarchal family, pride and honor of ancestral lineage, extravagant festivity etc. Now a major motion picture, The New York Times International Bestseller by Khaled Hossseini is a ‘Book of The Decade‘, chosen by The Times, Daily Telegraph and Guardian and has won immense praise.
This masterful intoxicating book provides a gallery of memorable images, telling an intensely vivid and unforgettably gripping story of fierce cruelty, betrayal, guilt, fear and fierce yet redeeming love, warmth and Afgan humor. It depicts the fragility of a highly unlike friendship between a wealthy boy and a son of his father’s servant, symbolized by the kites the boys fly together, is tested as they watch their old way of life disappear.
This engaging story that reminds us of the lengthy struggle to triumph over the forces of violence, unfortunately through even more violence, and the perpetual schism that ensues. It speaks the unwelcome truth about the disastrous powers of evil, both personal and political, weaved around a high-flying kite that inevitably falls back on Earth.