Sunday, September 16, 2007
Reading List: "A Thousand Splendid Suns"
Last week my mother-in-law Brenda McGee sent me a package with a scrumptiously soft blanket for Jesse wrapped around a book about strong women. Does my mother-in-law know what makes me tick, or what!
Here are the reasons you must read this book:
1. Literary merit
The number 1 criteria for any book. Beautiful sentences, beautiful scenes. You'll love the characters. You won't want to put it down.
2. Political relevance
I'm a smart girl, I tell myself, but I can't seem to wrap my mind around the middle east. This book, though fiction, helped me get a grip of major events in the last 30 years of Afghanistan.
Spoiler alert: The book ends with redemption, in terms of the characters, yes, but also a beautiful story of spiritual redemption. You'll put it down feeling enlightened, grateful, motivated, ready to make the world a better place.
Keep this in mind when, in the middle of the book, the characters' troubles start to weigh you down. On Friday night I decided I wouldn't read any further on Saturday--the book was so sad I feared it would cast a pallor over me and make me grumpy with the kids. (It does take some serious positive energy to stay home with 5 kids all day.) Instead I woke up on Saturday morning and read the characters to safety while the kids watched cartoons. Then the rest of the day I was able to see more clearly the blessings of my peaceful country, safe home, plentiful pantry, and loving family.
I now must read the author's other book, which has been on best-seller lists for years. Here's his website: