Allow me to borrow a book title for my blog post today. I have just finished reading this, a book about a family’s struggles while fleeing war-torn Afghanistan. I have just encountered Nadia Hashimi’s book, my first one of her actually but based on Goodread’s short bio about her, she is a very gifted author. This book was simple but so elegantly written that I can’t help but fill my small notebook with quotes that ring and vibrate throughout the story.
I never base my reviews on book summaries but how it affected me while reading it. This is one of those books that is comparable with the works of another Afghan author that I admire so much, Khaled Hosseini. Don’t ask me why but ever since I started reading I have always been fascinated by history and historical novels. I think I am old soul. I am reminded of those times when I searched and bought almost all of Leon Uris’ published books and reread Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead.
One learns a lot when you read about other people and other countries’ cultures. You learn how their lives are shaped by their beliefs and their love for their families. You learn that everywhere, there is something similar about the culture you grew up in. Family represents a binding force always. And lest I forget, let me quote some of those words I’ve jotted down while reading this book.
- – Love can grow even in place where there is hardly air to breathe.
- – There are truths and lies and there are things in between, murky waters where light gets bent and broken.
- – Love grows wildest in the gardens of hardship.
- – Some things are clearer from a distance.
- – It takes a lifetime to learn your parents. For children, parents are larger than life. They are strong arms that carry little ones, warm laps for sleepy heads, sources of food and wisdom. It’s as if parents were born on the same day as their children, having not existed a moment before. As children inch their way into adolescence, the parent changes. He is an authority, a source of answers, and a chastising voice. Depending on the day, he may be resented, emulated, questioned, or defied. Only as an adult can a child imagine his parent as a whole person, as a husband, a brother, or a son. Only then can a child see how his parent fits into the world beyond four walls.
There are more wonderful quotes that I’d like to share with you but these will do for now. Next on my list is a book about Lou Gehrig’s disease. The last time I encountered ALS ( Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) was when I read Tuesdays With Morrie several years ago. I hope I won’t cry as much as I did when I read Mitch Albom’s book. I remember giving copies to my two doctors when I had sigmoid surgery. It is a gift to know that you can be strong even if you are dying.