A Thousand Splendid Suns By Khaled Hosseini is a novel which shows how Afghanistan has gone through drastic change in recent history, and gives it through the perspective of two women who are forced into hardship during the political struggles still permeating through the region. It is beautifully written, with each and every passage conveying meaning and emotion. The plotline is filled with both unbridled happiness and tragedy beyond words. It is an emotional rollercoaster which will have you in tears on one page and smiling uncontrollably on the next. The style of writing, as well, accentuates the tension and action perfectly.
The main characters are very relatable and easy to empathize with, and felt very real. Their struggles seemed so vividly real even when you understood that they were fiction. I have not encountered many characters who give the same connections and emotions as those devised by Hosseini. Yet, simultaneously, some of the characters are so easily dislikable yet the author forces you to sympathize with them. Some of the developments taken by both protagonists and antagonists and everywhere in between are so drastic and unexpected that the characters that we are familiar with when they are introduced are shadows of what they will be. Every character goes through periods where you don’t necessarily like or sympathize with and at the same time you are given a background to why each character is the way that they are.
The plotline, as stated before, is filled with emotion and tragedy. But, in opposition to many fiction novels, all of the plot developments are based on events that have happened in the past, and that many of the readers have familiarized themselves with and, if they have not, still understand that these tragedies could happen to real people, and most likely have happened on many occasions, and it gives a certain sense of humanity that dystopia and alternate realities can’t convey. But, what makes this more relatable and more tragic is that it is recent history, within 30 years of today, which gives it a better position to convey tragedy than historical novels like William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar or Elie Wiesel’s Night, as we understand the tragedy, but also understand that it is over and done with. Hosseini forces us to open our eyes to events that are actually happening, which the brilliance of his writing does perfectly. A Thousand Splendid Suns is an amazing work of literature which I can give no major criticisms to, but it is amazingly important for understanding the current state of our world.