A Thousand Splendid Suns and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $25.95
  • Save: $6.36 (25%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Fast Shipping - Safe and Secure Bubble Mailer!
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

A Thousand Splendid Suns Hardcover – May 22, 2007


See all 89 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$19.59
$2.40 $0.01


Frequently Bought Together

A Thousand Splendid Suns + And the Mountains Echoed + The Kite Runner
Price for all three: $58.75

Buy the selected items together

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Hero Quick Promo
Browse in Books with Buzz and explore more details on selected titles, including the current pick, "The Good Girl" by Mary Kubica.

Product Details

  • Series: AWARDS: ALA Best Books for Young Adults 2008
  • Hardcover: 372 pages
  • Publisher: Riverhead (May 22, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594489505
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594489501
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3,012 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,383 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

It's difficult to imagine a harder first act to follow than The Kite Runner: a debut novel by an unknown writer about a country many readers knew little about that has gone on to have over four million copies in print worldwide. But when preview copies of Khaled Hosseini's second novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns, started circulating at Amazon.com, readers reacted with a unanimous enthusiasm that few of us could remember seeing before. As special as The Kite Runner was, those readers said, A Thousand Splendid Suns is more so, bringing Hosseini's compassionate storytelling and his sense of personal and national tragedy to a tale of two women that is weighted equally with despair and grave hope.

We wanted to spread the word on the book as widely, and as soon, as we could. See below for an exclusive excerpt from A Thousand Splendid Suns and early reviews of the book from some of our top customer reviewers.--The Editors


An Exclusive Excerpt from A Thousand Splendid Suns

We have arranged with the publisher to make an exclusive excerpt of A Thousand Splendid Suns available on Amazon.com. Click here to read a scene from the novel. It's not the opening scene, but rather one from a crucial moment later in the book when Mariam, one of the novel's two main characters, steps into a new role.


Early Buzz from Amazon.com Top Reviewers

We queried our top 100 customer reviewers as of March 6, 2007, and asked them to read A Thousand Splendid Suns and share their thoughts. We've included these early reviews below in the order they were received. For the sake of space, we've only included a brief excerpt of each reviewer's response, but each review is available for reading in its entirety by clicking the "Read the review" link.

Joanna Daneman: "His style is deceptively simple and clear, the characters drawn deftly and swiftly, his themes elemental and huge. This is a brilliant writer and I look forward to more of his work." Read Joanna Daneman's review

Seth J. Frantzman: "Khaled Hosseini has done it again with 'A Thousand Splendid Sons', presenting a new, dashing and dark tale of two generations of women trapped in a loveless marriage, bracketed by great events." Read Seth J. Frantzman's review

Donald Mitchell: "Khaled Hosseini has succeeded in capturing many important historical and contemporary themes in a way that will make your heart ache again and again. Why will your reaction be so strong? It’s because you’ll identify closely with the suffering of almost all the characters, a reaction that’s very rare to a modern novel." Read Donald Mitchell's review

Lawrance M. Bernabo: "All things considered, following up on a successful first novel is probably harder than coming up with the original effort and Hosseini could have rested on his laurels in the manner of Harper Lee, but as "A Thousand Splendid Suns" amply proves, this native of Kabul has more stories to tell about the land of Afghanistan." Read Lawrance M. Bernabo's review

Amanda Richards: "There are parts of this book that will have grown men surreptitiously blotting the tears that are on the verge of overflowing their ducts, and by the time you get to the middle, you won’t be able to put it down. Hosseini's simple but richly descriptive prose makes for an engrossing read, and in my opinion, "A Thousand Splendid Suns" is among the best I have ever read. This is definitely not one to be missed." Read Amanda Richards's review

N. Durham: "All that being said, "A Thousand Splendid Suns" is a bit more enjoyable than Hosseini’s previous "The Kite Runner", and once again he manages to give we readers another glimpse of a world that we know little about but frequently condemn and discard. However, if you were one of the many that for some reason absolutely loved "The Kite Runner", chances are that you'll love this as well." Read N. Durham's review

John Kwok: "Khaled Hosseini's "A Thousand Splendid Suns" is a genuine instant literary classic, and one destined to be remembered as one of 2007's best novels. It should be compared favorably to such legendary Russian novels like "War and Peace" and "Doctor Zhivago"." Read John Kwok's review

Thomas Duff: "Normally I'm more of an action-adventure type reader when it comes to novels and recreational reading. But I was given the chance to read A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (author of The Kite Runner), so I decided to try something out of my normal genre. I am *so* glad I did. This is a stunning and moving novel of life and love in Afghanistan over a 30 year period." Read Thomas Duff's review

Charles Ashbacher: "This book manages to simultaneously capture the history of Afghanistan over the last thirty years and how women are treated in conservative Islamic societies.... In many ways it is a sad book, your heart goes out to these two women in their hopeless struggle to have a decent life with a brutal man in an unforgiving, intolerant society." Read Charles Ashbacher's review

W. Boudville: "Hosseini presents a piognant view into the recent tortured decades of the Afghan experience. From the 1970s, under a king, to the Soviet takeover, to the years of resistance. And then the rise and fall of the Taliban. An American reader will recognise many of the main political events. But to many Americans, Afghanistan and its peoples and religion remain an opaque and troubling mystery." Read W. Boudville's review

Mark Baker: "I tend to read plot heavy books, so this character study was a definite change of pace for me. I found the first half slow going at times, mainly because I knew where the story was going. Once I got into the second half, things really picked up. The ending was very bittersweet. I couldn't think of a better way to end it." Read Mark Baker's review

Grady Harp: "Hosseini takes us behind those walls for forty some years of Afghanistan's bloody history and while he does not spare us any of the descriptions of the terror that continues to besiege that country, he does offer us a story that speaks so tenderly about the fragile beauty of love and devotion and lasting impression people make on people." Read Grady Harp's review

Robert P. Beveridge: "When I was actively reading it, the pages kept turning, and more than once I found myself foregoing food or sleep temporarily to get in just one more chapter. When I had put it down, however, I felt no particular compulsion to pick it back up again. It's a good book, and a relatively well-written one, but it's not a great book. Enjoyable without leaving a lasting impression." Read Robert P. Beveridge's review

B. Marold: "While the events in Afghanistan and the wider world create a familiar framework for the stories of these two women, it is nothing more than a framework. The warp and weft of everyday life, and the interaction of the two women and their close relatives is the heartbeat of the story." Read B. Marold's review

Daniel Jolley: "Khaled Hosseini has written a majestic, sweeping, emotionally powerful story that provides the reader with a most telling window into Afghan society over the past thirty-odd years. It's also a moving story of friendship and sacrifice, giving Western readers a rare glimpse into the suffering and mistreatment of Afghan women that began long before the Taliban came to power." Read Daniel Jolley's review


From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Afghan-American novelist Hosseini follows up his bestselling The Kite Runner with another searing epic of Afghanistan in turmoil. The story covers three decades of anti-Soviet jihad, civil war and Taliban tyranny through the lives of two women. Mariam is the scorned illegitimate daughter of a wealthy businessman, forced at age 15 into marrying the 40-year-old Rasheed, who grows increasingly brutal as she fails to produce a child. Eighteen later, Rasheed takes another wife, 14-year-old Laila, a smart and spirited girl whose only other options, after her parents are killed by rocket fire, are prostitution or starvation. Against a backdrop of unending war, Mariam and Laila become allies in an asymmetrical battle with Rasheed, whose violent misogyny—"There was no cursing, no screaming, no pleading, no surprised yelps, only the systematic business of beating and being beaten"—is endorsed by custom and law. Hosseini gives a forceful but nuanced portrait of a patriarchal despotism where women are agonizingly dependent on fathers, husbands and especially sons, the bearing of male children being their sole path to social status. His tale is a powerful, harrowing depiction of Afghanistan, but also a lyrical evocation of the lives and enduring hopes of its resilient characters. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, and moved to the United States in 1980. His first novel, The Kite Runner, was an international bestseller, published in thirty-eight countries. In 2006 he was named a goodwill envoy to UNHCR, the United Nations Refugee Agency. He lives in northern California.

Related Media


Customer Reviews

The writing is amazing...so beautifully written.
Conover Jew
If you want a really good story to grab you and not let go even after you've turned the last page, read this book.
QueenB
I will say that this is a story about women's lives, about love, survival, endurance and hope.
Barb Mechalke

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I read many books in a year. Some I read for entertainment and others to increase my knowledge. Then there is the rare book that does both of those things, plus touches your heart as well. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini does just that. Hosseini's The Kite Runner was a magnificent book, and I enjoyed A Thousand Splendid Suns even more.

Splendid Suns follows the lives of two Afghani women, Mariam and Laila, as they move from children to adults. The book spans 30 years, beginning with the Soviet invasion and ending with the overthrow of the Taliban. It's difficult to explain more of the story without spoiling the plot, but these two women go from being enemies to unlikely friends. A Thousand Suns is a moving story about the power of love, the bonds of friendship, the love of country, and the struggle to survive. I hated to see it end.

I like books that teach me something, and there is a lot to learn in Splendid Suns. Previously, I didn't know much about the political turmoil in Afghanistan and the various factions vying for power. I knew women had an appalling time living under the Taliban regime, but I didn't realize how horrible conditions really were. The childbirth section will fill you with horror. I also learned of the natural beauty of Afghanistan and her fascinating history.

I was especially moved by Hesseini's eloquent writing and observations. In writing of friendship, "Boys, Laila came to see, treated friendship the way they treated the sun: its existence undisputed; its radiance best enjoyed, not beheld directly." There aren't too many writers who can produce back-to-back masterpieces. Khaled Hosseini is one of those rare talents who can pull off such a feat.
6 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
89 of 92 people found the following review helpful By SUPPORT THE ASPCA. on July 30, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is not a book for the timid, this is a melancholy story with four parts that eventually overlap. This emotional rollercoaster ride of a story covers the period from 1964 to roughly the present day in the hardluck country of Afghanistan. It centers on the lives of two women, Mariam { a harami= illegitimate} raised in a hut by her mother, the only highlight of her destitute life is the Thursday visits from her father. When her fathers family rejects her she is forced into a marriage with the brutal shoemaker Rasheed. A devout follower of the Taliban's cruelty towards females. Laila lives down the street from Mariam in very different circumstances. She is raised in a modern family, by a loving father & depressive mother.

The book covers the issues of class, religion, work, education, sexual roles, & raising children. All are highlighted by the tumult of Afghanistan's history. This is a very descriptive, well written story, you can feel & sense the characters lives. The first half was a little slow, & it is clear that this will be a "blue journey." The sacrifices these two women gives the reader a slideshow of the harshness of their lives. Part three, is the peak of the story. This is where the two women's relationship truly meshed. The fourth part sees Afghanistan opening to modernity & is less traumatic. A very good & poignant read.
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
103 of 113 people found the following review helpful By Vickie Davie on May 24, 2007
Format: Hardcover
....for me to read The Kite Runner.

I read A Thousand Splendid Suns in six.

This book is less disturbing than The Kite Runner. There is more quiet desperation. A bit less personal story, and a bit more history.

But, it is no less gripping. The story and the history are beautifully woven together. The author holds nothing back in painting a stark picture of what it means to be a woman in a culture where they are valued only for how well they keep a house, and how many sons they produce. A culture where they are subject to the whims of men. Those that value them as worthwhile human beings are welcome oases - they seem to be the exceptions in their world, rather than the norm.

He also paints a stark picture of how much harm religious fanaticism and intolerance can do.

But, it also paints a picture of hope that the winds of change can blow cool and refreshing.

It also shows us the rich history of Afghanistan, a country that has endured, much like Nana said that women must. It shows a country and a people with much potential.

My eyes welled in a few places. At one point, I had to stop reading, close my eyes, and gather myself as the story hit close to home. I even laughed (Islamic flamingos.) By the end, tears were streaming down my face, and I was once again left feeling immensely satisfied.

It is rare that you find a writer who, with their first novel, shows that they are an immense talent. I had previously only ever read one such author in my life. From the first chapter of The Kite Runner, I knew that Khaled Hosseini would be one of them. A Thousand Splendid Suns is more proof of it.

I am already looking forward to what he produces next.
4 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
512 of 609 people found the following review helpful By Amanda Richards HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 23, 2007
Format: Hardcover
With his second novel, Khaled Hosseini proves beyond a shadow of doubt that "The Kite Runner" was no flash in the Afghan pan. Once again set in Afghanistan, the story twists and turns its way through the turmoil and chaos that ensued following the fall of the monarchy in 1973, but focuses mainly on the lives of two women, thrown together by fate.

The story starts decades before the Taliban came into power in 1996, and ends after the era of Taliban rule. The main character begins life as a "harami" - the illegitimate daughter of a wealthy man and one of his housekeepers. Forced to live in a small shack with her emotionally disturbed and possibly epileptic mother, Mariam lives for Thursdays, the day her father comes to see her, bearing small gifts and showering her with the affection she craves. Naturally, Mariam wants to be a part of her father's life and fit in with his legitimate family, but when she attempts to force his hand, she is rebuffed and feels betrayed by his reaction. Her impetuous actions bring an end to the life she has known for fifteen long years, and lead to an arranged marriage to a much older man, a shoemaker, whose views on the rights of women mirror those that the Taliban would soon enforce.

During the time that Mariam is dutifully enduring her unhappy marriage, a neighbor gives birth to a baby girl, whom they name Laila. By her ninth birthday, Laila has grown up to be a beautiful child with blonde hair, turquoise-green eyes, high cheekbones and dimples. Unfortunately, her mother lives only for the day her older sons will return home from fighting the jihad, and is consumed by the vision of a free Afghanistan.
Read more ›
56 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Search

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?