A Thousand Splendid Suns

By Khlaed Hosseini

A thousand splendid suns by Khlaed Hosseini takes place outside Herat, a small city in Afghanistan. Mariam, the main character, is 14 at the time, and after her mother commits suicide, she is forced to go live with her father and his many other wives. Not wanting anything to do with Mariam, her fathers many wives convince him to find a husband for her, which he does. He finds Rasheed, a widowed shoe maker. Down the street from the now married couple is Leila, a privileged young girl who comes from a loving family. That is until a rocket hit her house killing her parents, once nursed back to health by Rasheed and Mariam, she accepts a marriage proposal from him. Leila soon gives birth to a baby girl named Aziza. Too afraid to tell Rasheed that the baby is not his, but her best friend Tariq's, she lets Rasheed believe its his. Both being abused physically and mentally by Rasheed, Mariam and Leila start to become friends. Once they even tried to run away together, which resulted to the beating of both of them and also being deprived of water, almost killing Aziza. Years later, Leila gives birth to a son named Zalmai, which happens to be at the same time the Taliban has risen to power and opposed harsh rules on Afghanistan. Also leading Rasheed to take Aziza to an orphanage. When Tariq comes back to visit and Rasheed finds out, he start to beat her savagely, then which Mariam hits him over the head with a shovel, killing him. Which leads to the public execution of Mariam. Leila and Tariq are now together with a baby on the way and if its a girl, they have already planned to name her Mariam.
The setting of A thousand splendid suns is Afghanistan. Theme of this book is marriage vs. true love. Being forced into marriage with Rasheed, Mariam never got to experience what true love is really like or what it would of been like to marry a man who you're truly in love with. But that cannot be said for Leila, who was not only truly in love with Tariq, but who also got to end of with the man she was in love with.
Khaled Hosseini - A Thousand Splendid Suns - Part 1
Khaled Hosseini - A Thousand Splendid Suns - Part 2