But let me tell you what I liked about it.
It is a lifelike story with a gripping plot, skilfully told and provided with vivid descriptions. Most of it is set in Afghanistan (starting from 1970s), and for me it was like discovering a parallel reality, delving into a different culture I knew very little about. It is a dramatic life story that touches a deep chord in your heart, dealing with serious and profound questions. Love and hate, friendship and loyalty, faith and betrayal, sin and redemption, courage and cowardice, moral values and principles, dignity and honour, generosity and meanness, honesty and lies, mistakes, compunction and expiation, family, religion and society, traditions and conventionalities, childhood and maturation, social inequality and discrimination, war and politics, wealth and poverty, justice and unfairness – all these themes, one way or another, are embraced by the writer.
I won’t tell you anything concerning the plot, and if you decide to read the novel, try not to resort to Wikipedia for any references about it, unless you don’t mind coming across spoilers. In an attempt to get some historical background I accidentally read what was supposed to be revealed to the reader only at the end of the story, and I must say I wasn’t happy about that.
Most of the plot keeps the reader in suspense, and I think it could be characterized as unpredictable and predictable at the same time (although, as my own case was kind of messed up, I can only imagine the degree of predictability). Besides that, I really liked the way the novel finishes: like a good movie, which leaves space for thought and imagination.
In a few words, definitely an unforgettable reading experience.
P.S. Any corrections will be greatly appreciated (;