And the Mountains Echoed

And the Mountains Echoed - Khaled Hosseini Traveling across the desert from their tiny village to Kabul their father entertains Abdullah and Pari with an Afghani fairy tale about a little boy kidnapped by an evil ogre. The moral of the fairy tale is that sometimes despite feeling like the most horrible thing in the world has happened, it all turns out to be for the best. This telling of the fairy tale foreshadows the turn of events about to happen in the lives of the two small listeners. Three make the trek to Kabul but only two return to the village. Pari has been left behind in the care of a wealthy couple unable to have children of their own. This book follows the separate paths of the lives of Abdullah and Pari.

Mr. Hosseini is a master at pulling at the heartstrings and this book is another example of that talent. His characters are always so well written they feel real and I always care about what happens to them. There were a few parts of this book that I read through teary eyes and blurry vision. But Mr. Hosseini is also very good at giving his readers a wonderful flavor of the settings for his books and again, this one is no different. It is obvious he has a love from his country of origin and writes about it so clearly the whether he is describing a small rural village, a vast desert or the bustle of Kabul, I have no trouble drawing a picture of it in my mind. He is fair about his descriptions though – no rose colored glasses, he gives the reader the grit with the beauty.

Once again his theme of family ties, undying love, obligations and redemption echo throughout this book. If you enjoyed Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns this is a must read. If you have not read the others this is a great book to introduce yourself to Mr. Husseini’s work.