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A Thousand Splendid Suns Audiobook

A Thousand Splendid Suns

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Publisher's Summary

Propelled by the same superb instinct for storytelling that made The Kite Runner a beloved classic, A Thousand Splendid Suns is at once an incredible chronicle of 30 years of Afghanistan history and a deeply moving story of family, friendship, faith, and the salvation to be found in love.

Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss, and by fate. As they endure the ever-escalating dangers around them, in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul, they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation. With heart-wrenching power and suspense, Hosseini shows how a woman's love for her family can move her to shocking and heroic acts of self-sacrifice, and that in the end it is love, or even the memory of love, that is often the key to survival.

A stunning accomplishment, A Thousand Splendid Suns is a haunting, heartbreaking, compelling story of an unforgiving time, an unlikely friendship, and an indestructible love.

©2007 TKR Publications, LLC. All rights reserved; (P)2007 Simon and Schuster Inc. All rights reserved.

What the Critics Say

"Another searing epic....[Hosseini's] tale is a powerful, harrowing depiction of Afghanistan, but also a lyrical evocation of the lives and enduring hopes of its resilient characters." (Publishers Weekly)
"Unimaginably tragic, Hosseini's magnificent second novel is a sad and beautiful testament to both Afghani suffering and strength. Readers who lost themselves in The Kite Runner will not want to miss this unforgettable follow up." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (7326 )
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4.6 (3295 )
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4.5 (3279 )
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Sindi 01-19-08
    Sindi 01-19-08 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    76
    ratings
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    242
    23
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    Overall
    "Perfection!"

    As a fan of The Kite Runner, I hoped this one would not be a disappointment. Thank goodness it wasn't. I love this book for so many reasons. It kept me hooked from beginning to end. I hope the author is finishing a new novel at this very moment. Be sure to listen to The Kite Runners if you are one of the few to missed it. I think the narrators add an extra touch to the stories. Just perfection on every level.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    P. J. Benyei 12-18-07 Listener Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    265
    ratings
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    245
    36
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    Overall
    "Moving"

    This is a well written well paced book full of touching characters. You will love some and hate others, but the author will make you feel something for all of them. I felt pity, sadness, anger, frustration, joy. Not only are the characters wonderful, the writing smooth and flowing, but the historical/cultural insights are as interesting as the characters and their stories. It was a wonderful listen, and I would highly recommend it to anyone.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    analyzethis USA, Europe, M.E. 08-12-07
    analyzethis USA, Europe, M.E. 08-12-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    72
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    32
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    "brilliant but unbearable"

    The writing and character development is perhaps even better than in Kite Runner, and the story rings true. But it is so unrelentingly sad that despite the beautiful writing and occasional glimmers of hope and light, I couldn't force myself to endure it until the end.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard 07-31-07
    Richard 07-31-07

    Biomedical entrepreneur. Lifelong Libertarian. Yoga enthusiast.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    106
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    "Sensational!"

    It's difficult to describe this book's myriad dimensions. It is at the same time sad, uplifting, thought-provoking, and more. It is a love story, a political statement, a social statement, a familial statement, and more. And it's all tied together with wonderfully written prose. Worth every letter, word, phrase, sentence.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peyton Imperial, PA United States 07-26-07
    Peyton Imperial, PA United States 07-26-07 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    103
    ratings
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    463
    16
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    Overall
    "Allah Bless America"

    This is a story of man's' inhumanity to man. It is a difficult story to hear, but a story we need to hear to be responsible adults in the global society in which we exist. This is not for children. With the daily rhetoric, and horrifing facts of the casulities in Iraq, it is difficult to stomach our government's willingness to send our country's young people (as in the past our grandfathers raised the flag in Iwo Jima), to achieve our unitied, moralistic goal of combating evil and the persecution of peoples across the planet. Though some may view this national dedication as an ego for "world dominance", this story shows us how our efforts in remote, discounted lands have achieved great things, not only in this current conflict, but throughout our country's history... Yes, with action there are always mistakes, but this story shows our country as we are viewed by the sick, downtrodden, and poor (where did I read that?). The USA shines as a beacon to liberation, justice, and the right to pursue happiness for all.

    If you were in trouble, who do you want to hear... From the French in WWII, to the Afghanies/Mujahadin/Taliban as the story relates. I think all the peoples suffering injustice in the world would want to hear the engines of Apaches and Blackhawks accompanied by the call of the US Marines.

    Disagree if you want, that is what we fight for... Great book!

    May God, Jehovia, or Allah remove the ignorance and intolerance that is chronicled in this book... In Afganistan, Somalia, Iraq, or the next conflict. Inshallah...

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Colleen Brookdale, CA, United States 06-14-07
    Colleen Brookdale, CA, United States 06-14-07 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Must Read (or Listen)"

    Dr. Hosseni used to be my doctor so you'll be happy to know that he is not only a fabulous writer but he is also a good guy and a wonderful doctor. I thought the Kite Runner was excellent and this one exceeded my expectations. Dr. Hosseni is probably doing more for the humanitarian cause than anyone else as far as putting faces with a culture that has been ignored except for the focus on war. I get lost in his books. I'm stuck in traffic and don't even care and in fact, want it to take even longer to get to work. I feel like I'm visiting another country. Having lived in other countries and traveled extensively, I know that there are some people that are always going to fight for power (unfortunately) but at the core of the population are good people everywhere, just trying to do life the best they can.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. M. Potter Washington D.C. 01-12-16
    A. M. Potter Washington D.C. 01-12-16 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Profound, riveting, important book"
    Any additional comments?

    A deeply disturbing, emotional story, and one of the most influential and important novels I've ever read. I grew to love Mariam and Laila like they were my own family, and I experienced their story with deep sadness and affection. The story still claws at me, even after finishing, and I suspect it will continue to haunt me for some time.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie- Chicago, IL, United States 01-27-14
    Julie- Chicago, IL, United States 01-27-14 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Read"

    This was a great book, with a great narrator, not many books stick with me after I have finished reading them but this one did. I cried and rejoiced with the characters in this heart wrenching novel. Its a must read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Compute 06-25-13
    Compute 06-25-13 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Powerful and thought provoking"

    What a phenomenal book. After reading “The Kite Runner,” I knew I had to read this book. It was a hard read because of the spousal abuse, but I knew I had to do it. This book really tells us about life in a third-world country that has gone through war for many, many years. It will tear at your heart strings and make you want to weep for the two women in the story, Lila and Miriam, who in our eyes had horrible lives. But they knew great love and strength and faced life’s challenges with fortitude and grace. The book covers the social conflicts in the country as well as personal love and strife.

    There are a few books that you read in life that really grab your heart and this was one of those books. Although I continually cringed while reading the book, I found I couldn’t put it down. My hat is off to Khaled Hosseini for helping us to learn of his country and its magnificent people.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lee Blue Anchor, NJ, United States 11-21-12
    Lee Blue Anchor, NJ, United States 11-21-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Trying to understand Afghanistan"

    This book was amazing. As we become more and more lost in Afghanistan, this book is a point of reference. The story and the narration will stay with me for a long time.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • K. Stokell
    Wirral UK
    5/26/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A wonderful story but tedious narrator"
    Would you try another book written by Khaled Hosseini or narrated by Atossa Leoni?

    Yes I like Khaled Hosseini but my enjoyment of the story was spoiled by the monotonous way Atossa Leoni read the story.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Tariq. A kind selfless man


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Utterly tedious and really spoiled the story. Admittedly her pronunciation was excellent but her reading of English was stilted and monotonous. She sounded like a computerised voice. Meaning was lost when she failed to read sentences with the correct punctuation and intonation. Rather like somebody picking up the book for the first time without reading the chapters first. This meant that I found it very difficult to sympathise with the characters who all sounded the same.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from A Thousand Splendid Suns?

    None


    Any additional comments?

    I would not listen to another book narrated by Atossa Leoni but would happily read another book by Khaled Hosseini.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Giovanna
    Varberg, Sweden
    5/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Touching"
    What made the experience of listening to A Thousand Splendid Suns the most enjoyable?

    The story was beautiful and beautifully written. Touching and educative.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Thousand Splendid Suns?

    The childhood......it is the same all over the world.


    How could the performance have been better?

    The reader was just reading, using pauses where they didn't belong etc.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    A few.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • James
    UK
    4/30/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Painful listening, I forget my own pains in life!"
    What did you like best about this story?

    Made me aware of events and places in the world I knew very little about.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Countess_Dracul
    UK
    3/21/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An eye opening book"
    What did you like most about A Thousand Splendid Suns?

    It gave me a glimpse into the history of a country I know virtually nothing about. And a life I'm glad not to live!


    What other book might you compare A Thousand Splendid Suns to, and why?

    movies and books such as not without my daughter


    What about Atossa Leoni’s performance did you like?

    Excellent, performance with clear pronunciation of names that I know if I had been reading myself I would not have had a clue how to pronounce.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When the rules the Taliban enforced were read out for the first time.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jayne
    bracknell, United Kingdom
    2/3/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "what we will do as humans"
    If you could sum up A Thousand Splendid Suns in three words, what would they be?

    Strong. Emotional. Touching


    What did you like best about this story?

    Two woman having a great bond over all they have faced.


    Which character – as performed by Atossa Leoni – was your favourite?

    I liked it all. I laughed, cried and gasped during my read.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    A life worth more than can be seen.


    Any additional comments?

    This author is great and should get more recognition for the work.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alina
    Yorkshire, United Kingdom
    2/1/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Bla"
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Thousand Splendid Suns to be better than the print version?

    Yes most definitely, especially for people who don't get the chance t sit and read.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The storyline is amazing, it's highly inspiring and totally recommend it.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    I'd like t believe I enjoyed every single chapter.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kat
    croydon, United Kingdom
    12/19/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Story but......"
    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    I think this audible production is a great example of how a narrator can impact the effect a book has on the listener. This story is such a memorising, often harrowing tale. When I listened to The Help, another tale centered around the hardship of women, I was intrigued, I laughed, I cried as I was drawn in by the amazing performances of the narrators . This story is just as good but the slightly robotic monotone of the narrator meant that I didn’t connect with the characters in quite the same way. Please don’t be put off, it’s still a very good download but I personally feel that a story of this magnitude deserves to have a much stronger actress who can convey all the strong emotions that run through the story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Marty C
    England
    10/21/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Beautifully written, beautifully read"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    5 years ago I was working in Dubai and I bought this book at Birmingham (UK) airport as I was flying back out after some time off at home. I can't remember the flight, all I remember is the story, how it grabbed me from the first page and kept me in it's grip until I finished it just before the plane landed. The differing emotions that I experienced during my journey through the story were as varied as the countries that sped by beneath me; a truly wonderful, moving and heart wrenching story that makes this book one of the best I have ever read...... I didn't think it could get any better.

    Nowadays I drive an hour to work in the mornings and another hour back home at night so I decided to give audio books a try to break up the boredom of the journey. I've listened to many over the past year but this one, which already has such a special place in my heart, was one that I really looked forward to hearing after my experience of reading it 5 years previously.

    Atossa Leoni did not disappoint, she not only read the story incredibly well, she also put her heart and soul into it and once again I was transported back to war torn Afghanistan and to the lives of the two women who the book focuses on. You lose yourself in her voice, you become one with the story and feel like your a part of it and the emotions you experience seem more raw, hurt deeper and last so much longer. I'm 52 years old, served my country for 23 of those years in the British Army and have seem some terrible things that I thought had hardened me emotionally, but this book, and the way Atossa narrates it, reduced me to tears many times.

    I didn't think it could get any better, Atossa Leoni proved me wrong.

    Thank you to Khaled Hosseini for writing such a beautiful, moving novel and to Atossa Leoni for narrating it in such a beautiful way so as to take the reader even closer to the emotions that the story evokes.

    I hope, and pray, that Audible and Atossa agree to her narrating on Hosseini's new book "And the Mountains Echoed" because I for one would very much look forward to hearing her read that.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The way it's written and the the way it's narrated. Together it makes for such a wonderful experience.


    Have you listened to any of Atossa Leoni’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    Unfortunately this is the only book she has narrated, apart from the abridged version that I won't listen to.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I would happily do that, and probably will before the year's out.


    Any additional comments?

    Just a thank you from a very, very satisfied customer.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • k
    southampton, United Kingdom
    8/4/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Captivating"
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Thousand Splendid Suns to be better than the print version?

    Yes I think it gained more by hearing the names and places read by some who pronounce them properly


    What did you like best about this story?

    It wrapped around me and enveloped me


    What does Atossa Leoni bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Because she rad it so beautifully with the right accent pronouncing names if mAde more alve


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Many


    Any additional comments?

    Completely recommend ths audio book

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Joe
    Kilkenny, Ireland
    4/7/13
    Overall
    "Educational, dark and emotional"

    I picked up this book on a recommendation and by the half-way point I feared I was going to be disappointed. It seemed Hosseini's characters (excepting Jalil) were one-dimensional and although the story was interwoven with interesting insights into recent Afghan history, the plot itself seemed not to be going anywhere interesting. From that point on, the plot really took off though as the relationship between the two main protagonists (Laila and Mariam) developed. In the end the book turned into a real tearjerker with some surprisingly dark moments, and I thoroughly enjoyed it to the end. In my opinion it would have benefitted from an extra hundred pages in the early chapters for the author to add more layering and complexity to the characters but it was a very enjoyable read nonetheless.



    The author once said, "I would like readers to walk away with a sense of empathy for Afghans, and more specifically for Afghan women, on whom the effects of war and extremism have been devastating". This is exactly how the book affected me, so the author hit his mark in my case. The story is one of regret, sacrifice, loss, ill-treatment, war and extremism and there's not much positive to balance this gloom. There are of course some moments of joy and positive relationships along the way, but often the price paid for these is ridiculously high. Although it is only a fictional account of two women and not a statement on the lives of all Afghan women, it is nonetheless educational and revealing for those of us far removed from the culture and politics which underlie so much of this.



    All in all, really good read, highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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