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And the Mountains Echoed Paperback – 8 May 2014
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A story of love, separation, friendship, compassion, exile, memory and the troubled history of Afghanistan, spanning three continents and sixty years ... Hosseini is a master storyteller (The Times)
Hosseini pulls off his usual - impressive - trick of breaking your heart and leaving you smiling (Daily Telegraph)
Hosseini digs deep and brings up diamonds (Independent on Sunday)
With profound depth and compassion, Hosseini writes about the bonds that define us and shape our lives (Mail on Sunday)
'A story of love, separation, friendship, compassion, exile, memory and the troubled history of Afghanistan, spanning three continents and sixty years ... Hosseini is a master storyteller.' (The Times)
'Hosseini pulls off his usual – impressive – trick of breaking your heart and leaving you smiling.' (The Daily Telegraph)
'With profound depth and compassion, Hosseini writes about the bonds that define us and shape our lives.' (The Mail on Sunday) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Khaled Hosseini's fans do have to wait a long time between books, its been five years since A Thousand Splendid Suns. I can truthfully say that this is certainly worth that very very long wait.
This is a story that spans generations, yet starts and finishes with the same characters. In 1952 a father and his two young children are travelling across Afghanistan, father has been promised some much needed work. The children; Abdullah and his little sister Pari are happy to be together, they adore each other and Abdullah has become more of a parent than a brother to Pari. When their mother died just after giving birth to Pari and then their father re-married and new half-siblings joined the family, Abdullah took on the protection and care of Pari. Neither of them can know that this journey will be the beginning of heartbreak that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.
With heart-breaking realism, Hosseini tells the tale of a family split apart by poverty and desperation. From the small rural villages to the large bustling cities of Afghanistan, the writing transports the reader into the heart of the story, experiencing the sounds, the smells and the changing political landscapes. From immense poverty, to the greatest riches. From the modest and humble, to the arrogant and the proud, the cast of characters are a triumph.Read more ›
Abdullah and Pari's story forms the core of the book but we also meet a wide variety of other engaging and fascinating characters. We hear from their uncle Nabi who works for a rich family in Kabul, from Nila, a poetess trapped in a loveless and constraining marriage and Idris and Timur, two brothers whose family fled to the USA when the conflict started and who return many years later to help in the reconstruction of shattered lives and buildings (each with very different motives). There's also Markos, a Greek plastic surgeon who works for a medical charity and Adel, the son of a former warlord who comes to realise that his father is perhaps not the great and benevolent man he thought him to be.
Each character's tale is told in a separate chapter almost as a series of vignettes, but there's a strong inter-linking theme running throughout the book which is the personal tragedy and devastation caused by the successive wars in Afghanistan and the desire to reconstruct the fractured country and fragmented families. Sometimes the characters speak to us in the first person, but other accounts are delivered in the form of a letter or a magazine interview.Read more ›
The book started promisingly, centred on Abdullah and his sister Pari going on a trip to Kabul with their father. Little did they know that the purpose of the trip was to give Pari to a rich woman as a daughter. So far, so heart-rending.
The story then jumped to the point of view of the step-uncle who arranged for Pari to be given to a new family, and from then on it jumped to the viewpoint of a new character every 30-40 pages. So, we are exposed to the different characters surrounding the story and we get to see why each person does as s/he does.
I found that this method of telling the story quite effective, in that the reader knows much more about the background of each character, but ultimately it detracted from the emotion of the novel and left me feeling nothing for each character. Hosseini excelled in his first two books because they were so moving and the reader was pulled along by the heart-strings, but this new method of writing only lets the reader dip their toes in and as such I felt quite let down.
Overall, still an enjoyable book to read and it kept me turning the pages, but definitely not on the same level as A Thousand Splendid Suns or the Kite Runner - someone who hasn't read Hosseini before would not necessarily be encouraged to read any more if this book was the first one they read.
I commend Hosseini for introducing so many characters and storylines, a risky departure from his previous successes. The problem is that some turn out to be irrelevant.
There is no doubt however, the ending lacked the emotional power it could have done. Pari and Abdullah meeting after 60 years should have been the pinnacle of the story. Instead, their reunion left me feeling flat and unfulfilled.
Which brings me to the main criticism of an otherwise fantastic read. Although Abdullah was the central character, his story was completely ignored after Chapter 1. We have no idea about the turmoil he went through after being seperated from his sister. Whether he eventually accepted it, or hated his father, or made attempts to find her etc. Instead, Idris, Markos and Adel were granted significant swathes of the book and neither had any significant impact on the Pari / Abdullah storyline.
Too many stories were told. 100 pages could have been cut, or replaced with more depth added to the central characters. The ending should have been told from Abdullah's point of view, to bring the entire story full circle.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I heard rave reviews about the author's 'A Thousand Splendid Suns', but I never particularly wanted to read that one. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Tehmeena
Beautiful, simply beautiful! Beautiful story, sensitively written. I loved it from start to finish. Read morePublished 6 days ago by elliemay
Really well written, almost makes you feel like you are there with these characters. Quite a sad book though.Published 23 days ago by Amazon Customer
Good main story but there were unnecessary parts in the book not cohesive with the rest of the story. Could have left out Roshis story and Markos story. Read morePublished 25 days ago by Amazon Customer
A very emotive book thoroughly enjoyed it. Completely enjoyed the characters and written with great understanding. Up there with the other 2 booksPublished 27 days ago by joy morgan