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Distinguished Bibliophile
Nadine
Posts: 2,456
Registered: ‎10-30-2006
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Re: First Impressions


kiakar wrote:


dianearbus wrote:
I found the book more than sad. I found it numbing at times. And that made it difficult for me to read. There were just too many beatings. Well, you might say, that is the reality of it. Yes,that might be true, but at some point, too much can lose the reader entirely. I thought the descriptions of the beatings, the sufferings were too detailed, too graphic. I understand that the author might want the reader to have a strong sense of the results of living in a situation where women are deprived of all rights, but too much sometimes makes people turn away instead of confront what is happening. I did finish the book but in all honesty, I don't think I would recommend it. Perhaps after these conversations, I might change my mind. Perhaps.

Lizabeth




dianearbus; I feel your pain as I also ache after reading this book. I feel this is the reason the author does put alot of emphasis on the beatings and mistreatment of the two women. With feelings of deep empathy maybe by reading the book we can someway stop this kind of abuse or pray for it to stop. Anything but do nothing. If we didn't want to read about it, imagine, getting the beating, imagine cowarding in a corner like a mischievous dog of somekind. Imagine not knowing when the next hit will come. But formost imagine, there is no one, that is no one , not a human body that can stop this abuse. Because, its ok, for men to do anything they want to women in this country. Is is still that way?




These article do not seem too promising as far as any improvement in the situation of women in Afghanistan.

http://www.motherjones.com/news/outfront/2003/07/ma_454_01.html

http://www.channel4.com/life/microsites/A/afghanistan/women.html

http://web.amnesty.org/library/index/engasa110232003

http://www.rawa.org/wom-view.htm

Lots of links here but you may want to avoid some of them or the photos if you are very disturbed by such things;

http://www.rawa.org/women.html
Frequent Contributor
Mariposa
Posts: 133
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: First Impressions

The situation for women in Afghanistan and many other countries in the world is deplorable. But it is also still deplorable for many women here in the United States. Husbands do abuse their wives here too. I want to believe that it is not on the scale as in Afghanistan but it still exists. And there is also psychological abuse.

I know in one of the posts, there was some comparison between the burka and the fashion/cosmetics industry here. When will be ever be appreciated for who we are? Nothing more and nothing else. Appreciated and given full access to employment at equal wages. What untapped creativity and energy lies stored in so many women!

Many years ago I was in the Women's Movement. What did we gain? We now work and raise children and do housework. I thought it was all supposed to be shared. I don't think that is the case in most households. And etc. And etc.

I apologize for going so off topic but I think it is easier to wonder what to do about women over there when if we are going to do anything, it should be for women here in the US. Perhaps we can be a model or a beacon of hope for others.
Contributor
lasharp24
Posts: 14
Registered: ‎01-02-2007
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Re: First Impressions

I agree with you both - the book was numbing at times. It disturbs me to think of the violence. But it disturbs me even more to understand that this is reality for more women that we can even imagine. In reading about this, we can close the book and change the subject, put it in the back of our mind. Can we even remotely imagine that this real life for these poor women? As much as I hurt, it is incomprehensible for me to imagine living the life described, and yet it is for real. I think that the author trys to help us understand how these woman survive through Mariam's character. I still see her transcending from her actual existence into another place which shields her from the abuse. I would imagine in doing so, is the ONLY way women in that society survive?

Would love to hear others thoughts on this.
Frequent Contributor
viva2
Posts: 35
Registered: ‎08-05-2007
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Re: First Impressions

Thank you for the Email sites.

I have forwarded them to our Barnes&Noble land-based Community Relations Manager who also will lead our discussion of "The Thousand Splendid Suns" at B&N this coming Wednesday. There will be lively discussion on the subject of present day treatment of women in Afghanistan, so this will be welcome fodder.

I, too, had to put the book down at times to recover from the frightful treatment of our protagonists. However, I am recommending the book with the proviso that it is difficult at times because of the violence.

I think it is a book that for many reasons deserves wide readership, violence or no violence. There are women here at home who are victims, and it is good to see women who rebel against such inhumanity and refuse to be victims, regardless of the outcome. It is heartbreaking that neither woman had any apparent recourse beyond flight or fight. Of course, women here can plan their escapes with much more safety.

This is a story of love, loyalty and the resilience of the spirit and rises above the violence.
Contributor
aireloom
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎07-27-2007
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Re: First Impressions

I really enjoyed The Kite Runner but A Thousand Splendid Suns was not as lasting in my mind. I read it the week it came out and have forgot the base of the story. Reading the discussions in this book club,has at least enlightened my interest in the book. I still prefer,10 times over,The Kite Runner.
aireloom
Moderator
Rachel-K
Posts: 1,495
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: First Impressions

I'm really enjoying this discussion! I also had to stop to breathe sometimes while reading! Is there anyway that a writer could describe such brutality without exposing us to the exhaustion and nausea of having to witness it as we do in the novel?

Most women I've talked to about the novel marvel that it was written by a man--but I would also point out how far apart the perspectives were that he took on in Kite Runner, too.

Rachel
Wordsmith
kiakar
Posts: 3,435
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: First Impressions



aireloom wrote:
I really enjoyed The Kite Runner but A Thousand Splendid Suns was not as lasting in my mind. I read it the week it came out and have forgot the base of the story. Reading the discussions in this book club,has at least enlightened my interest in the book. I still prefer,10 times over,The Kite Runner.




I can't say I liked either book better than the other. They were great books, well written and so rememorable. There is no way I could ever forget A thousand Splendid Suns. It will be everlasting to me until I breathe my last breath. With this much intensity in writing this book, I can't see anyone forgetting the horror these two women lived with. Maybe the book itself is ficitious, but it happened all over this country. It happens in our country.

It is a saying of some sort, I can't recall it. But the general idea is the strong will always try to conquer what they consider the weak or weaker than they are. Why, I can't understand this. But it seems true.

As is so pertinent for our Country, Men claim that women should work and bring home a paycheck but very few are willing to take on over, half of the responsibity of the house and family. It is repulsive to me, to see men just lay back and watch the wife do it all. No matter how strong that woman is, this is so disrespectible and immature in a man to do this.
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