Rating – 5 stars
It was madness.Sheer lunacy. A spectacularly foolish and baseless faith, against enormous odds, that a world you do not control will not take from you the one thing you cannot bear to lose. Faith that the world will not destroy you.
The best I can do to summarize this book is to use a quote from the book itself, that I think captures its essence very well.
Trying to review this book is like trying to put into words feelings which you possibly cannot describe no matter what, those feelings could be owing to any kind of experience that you may have underwent, from that of extreme joy to that of a loss, a trauma so huge that there can be no way to contain it into mere words the magnitude of what you went.
Khaled Hosseini’ latest venture – And the Mountains Echoed is exactly the kind of book which makes you feel at a loss for words and at the same time make you want to say so much about it that you don’t know where to begin or where to end. You can perhaps even feel a bit confused hoping, that you don’t make a fool out of yourself trying to comment on the genius of a man, who quite frankly is one of those few people in the literary world in this era, who creates such masterpieces one after another making it seem as if it’s an effortless task.
As always, Hosseini weaves the story of two characters bound together, against the backdrop of Afghanistan, whose lives though linked, their fates shear them apart.
Abdullah and Pari, the children of an ordinary man form the focus of this novel as Hosseini traces their lives from their roots in Shadbagh, a small village in Afghanistan to the city of Kabul that eventually tears them apart and progresses to the beautiful city of Paris and the crowded suburbs of California,which ultimately become home to Pari and Abdullah respectively.
The various people who become a part of Pari & Abdullah’ life through fate or coincidence tear them apart as children when Pari is adopted by a rich couple in Kabul who are in a marriage of convenience. It’s is from this point on that the journeys of these siblings truly begins as they go through the grind of life, but always seem to feel hollow no matter what.
In fact the major theme of this book, no matter where the characters are from or who they happen to be, seems to be that of a lonely existence.
Try as I might I cannot put into words the sheer beauty that is the experience of reading this book.
This is not one of those books which gives you a happily ever after. It’s not a tragedy either. Not essentially in the end.
What it is, in the end is a cruel perhaps mocking reflection of a reality that stares you in the face, daring you, to try to stop it, make it change and smirking knowing that in the end it will always win.
Recommended for absolutely everyone.