A bunch of short stories welded together to produce a long one. Even the eponymous hero, Kara Kush, is hardly dealt with as a human being. We know him little better at the end of the book than we did at the beginning.
One has the impression - Though I'm not sure why. Because they have the ring of truth perhaps? - that the stories are all based on real happenings and people. Certainly it's said that Shah, of Afghan descent himself, was heavily involved in the war he writes about and we might suppose he would have known a great deal about what went on.
There's also no denying where his sympathies lie. The Afghan freedom fighters are square jawed, noble, honest etc etc. whilst the Russians, and their Afghan collaborators, are, shall we say, none of these things. No shades of grey for Idries.
Best of all for me were the little nuggets of knowledge he provides about the many and diverse Afghan peoples. As an example, according to Idries Shah, the cult of the Assassins is still in existence in Afghanistan. Is it true? I've no idea, but he makes it seem so. Then there's the matter of the Bani Israel which I found astonishing.
All in all, an exciting and absorbing read. I knocked off a star because of what I see as the author's simplistic perception of the virtues and vices of the protagonists.