Book for February 2015
A Thousand Splendid Suns is a 2007 novel by Afghan-American author Khaled Hosseini. It is his second, following his bestselling 2003 debut, The Kite Runner. The book, which spans a period of over 50 years, from the 1960s to 2003, focuses on the tumultuous lives and relationship of Mariam and Laila, two Afghan women. Mariam, an illegitimate child, suffers from the stigma surrounding her birth and the abuse she faces throughout her marriage. Laila, born a generation later, is comparatively privileged during her youth until their lives intersect and she is also forced to accept a marriage proposal from Rasheed, Mariam's husband.
As critics noticed, Hosseini succeeds in making the emotional reality of Mariam and Leila’s lives tangible to us, and by conjuring their day-to-day routines, he is able to give us a sense of what daily life ws like in Kabul, both before and during the reign of the Taliban.
Columbia Pictures owns the movie rights to the novel, but production has yet to begin. Steven Zaillian finished writing the first draft of the screenplay in 2009 and is also slated to direct; Scott Rudin has signed on as a producer. In May 2013, studios confirmed a tentative release date of 2015.
In 1976, Hosseini's father obtained a job in Paris, France and moved the family there. They were unable to return to Afghanistan because of the Saur Revolution in which the PDPA communist party seized power through a bloody coup in April 1978. Instead, in 1980 they sought political asylum in the United States and made their residence in San Jose, California.
Hosseini graduated from Independence High School in San Jose in 1984 and enrolled at Santa Clara University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in biology in 1988. The following year, he entered the University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine, where he earned his M.D. in 1993. He completed his residency in internal medicine at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles in 1996. He practiced medicine for over ten years, until a year and a half after the release of The Kite Runner.
Hosseini is currently a Goodwill Envoy for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). He lives in Northern California with his wife, Roya, and their two children.
Other books we've read by the same author:The Kite Runner