Monday, December 12, 2005

Books on Afghanistan

I just finished reading my second book in recent months on life in Afghanistan. It is

Åsne Seierstad's The Bookseller of Kabul. During the summer, I had read Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner. Both of these books give a glimpse into the reality of life in Afghanistan. Some friends from Chile recommened The Kite Runner to me back in March when their daughter (a close friend of my daughter when they were both growing up in Chile) had a baby in Tulsa, OK. At the time, our son and his family were living in Tulsa. We were in Tulsa visiting them, and we heard the Martha (Woolsey) King had just had a baby, and that her parents were in Tulsa as well. We went to the hospital to see the baby, and Shirley Woolsey recommended the book. I kind of filed that information away in inactive memory. A few months later, we were in Chile, and ended up staying with the Woolsey family for several nights. I had forgotten about the recommendation, but I saw the book at their place. The last night we were there (!!!!) I had a little bit of difficulty sleeping, so I got up and started reading the book (the first 127 pages). It was riveting. I asked permission to take the book with me, promising to mail it right back upon finishing it. They told me no! I forgive them.

When I arrived home, I ordered the book (got a good price by buying it online). Before it came in, I went to Joplin's Books-a-Million, and read two chapters more while I was drinking coffee at Joe Mugg's Coffee. When the book arrived, I finished it. It is an historical novel, written by an Afghani who left Afghanistan for the United States. Get it and read it!

One of my advisees did an extended internship (mission) in Afghanistan during Spring Semester 2005 and into the summer. I was anxious to ask him about The Kite Runner. He had heard about it, but mentioned another book that was a good read, and a glimpse into life there, The Bookseller of Kabul. His fianceé was reading it, but I was assured that I could borrow it. I've had it now for several weeks, but have been buried under other things. I also recommend it.

Life there is certainly hard, but Jesus loves the Afghanis just as much as He loves you or me. If you enjoy a good read, I recommend both of them to you.

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