The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seierstad

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With The Bookseller of Kabul, award-winning journalist Asne Seierstad has given readers a first-hand look at Afghani life as few outsiders have seen it. Invited to live with Sultan Khan, a bookseller in Kabul, and his family for months, this account of her experience allows the Khans to speak for themselves, giving us a genuinely gripping and moving portrait of a family, and of a country of great cultural riches and extreme contradictions. For more than 20 years, Sultan Khan has defied the authorities--whether Communist or Taliban--to supply books to the people of Kabul. He has been arrested, interrogated, and imprisoned, and has watched illiterate Taliban soldiers burn piles of his books in the street. Yet he had persisted in his passion for books, shedding light in one of the world's darkest places. This is the intimate portrait of a man of principle and of his family--two wives, five children, and many relatives sharing a small four-room house in this war ravaged city. But more than that, it is a rare look at contemporary life under Islam, where even after the Taliban's collapse, the women must submit to arranged marriages, polygamous husbands, and crippling limitations on their ability to travel, learn and communicate with others.

About Asne Seierstad

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Asne Seierstad is an award-winning journalist who has reported from such war-torn regions as Chechnya, the Balkans, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Published October 1, 2003 by Little, Brown and Company. 304 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, Travel, Literature & Fiction, Religion & Spirituality, Education & Reference, War. Non-fiction

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Turkey, one of a handful of countries with a foot on two continents and often billed as the only Muslim democracy (although its constitution claims to be secular and the military has deposed electe

Sep 29 2003 | Read Full Review of The Bookseller of Kabul


Donning a burqa and becoming acquainted with the family's Islamic lifestyle, Seierstad gives readers an inside view of the country the soul-crushing tyranny of a government that forces Khan to hoard and hide books;

Jun 05 2014 | Read Full Review of The Bookseller of Kabul

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