Thursday, 12 August 2010

A good read

One thing I do more than anything else is read. I read all the time. I sometimes don't want to go to bed because the book I am reading isn't as good as I would wish! Perhaps my love of reading stems back from my childhood of the fifties. We didn't have TV and I lived my lonely childhood through books. I didn't have any great preferences then I just worked my way round the shelves in the Children's section of Porthcawl Library , the small seaside Welsh town where I was born and brought up.
Today I like modern novels and greatly admire Anita Shreve and Emily Barr and a host of other female writers.  I want to be able to write like them!
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The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
When this book first came out for some reason I didn’t fancy reading it but, as it was my reading groups choice this last month I read it and loved it and wondered why I hadn’t read it before.
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini explores the nature of friendship, of forgiveness and of redemption, set against the turbulent background of his native Afghanistan.
The son of a rich and popular merchant, Amir leads a privileged life, wanting only to please his beloved but demanding father, Baba, and to play with Hassan, the child of Ali, Baba’s lifelong servant. Both Amir and Hassan are motherless. They spend almost all their time together, playing games and sharing stories in their favourite pomegranate tree. An encounter with Assef, the local bully, in which Hassan springs to Amir’s defence has appalling consequences, destroying their friendship and driving Amir to desperate measures to rid himself of Hassan, measures which result in a puzzling reaction from his father. When Ali and Hassan decide to leave of their own accord, Amir’s relief is short lived; he knows that his cowardice has been detected.
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Threaded through the story is this feeling of guilt by Amir although he was only a boy himself when the dreadful act was commited against Hassan, he still feels that he should have done something. Perhaps he should have told Baba his father, but he as was always trying to receive recognition and praise from him, to allow his father to know he hadn't helped Hassan would have detroyed that.
As the story unfolded I came to like Amir more and more although as a young child he did have a mean streak and teased Hassan to the point of cruelty.
This book is well worth a read and if you don't choke back the odd tear I would be greatly surprised.

4 comments:

Angela said...

If you enjoyed that book read his other 'A Thousand Splendid Suns' It's probably even more poigniant, especially if your female.

Katya5 said...

I second Angela's suggestion. I read "A Thousand Splendid Suns" and it gave me a lot to think about.

amelia said...

I did the same thing through my childhood. We didn't have TV either so it was books, books, books for me!! Mostly Enid Blyton, The Famous Five and The Secret Seven!! But any book would do really. Anything to get me away from my very nasty mother.

I haven't read this book but will see if I can get it from the library.

Julie said...

I read a good review on this book only a few weeks ago, i have seen it on the shelves and thouhgt it wasn't for me, maybe i'll get it and try it now after this second good review.