A Disobedient Girl by Ru Freeman, set in Sri Lanka, is similar in theme and tone to ATSS, but much better. Deserves to be more widely read.
The author was a campaigning journalist and activist for women's rights originally, but decided to use fiction to reach a wider audience with her concerns. This doesn't read like a overtly political book, however it does make you think about how poverty and lack of independence affects women's lives in the society described ; it's an absorbing story.
We will just have to disagree on the definition of a "fantastic read".
Mine excludes books that show complete ignorance about the country they take place in, that capitalise on prejudices and bank on the ignorance of its readers.
Why do characters keep talking about Moby Dick and Titanic? Shouldn't they be more influenced by Afghan authors & literary works? Why aren't readers told about any Afghan landmarks other than the Buddha statues that Taliban blew up - which happen to be the only Afghan landmarks that Westerners have heard about?
The author has left Afghanistan as a child and has never been back. He is American for all intents and purposes, and has written this book in English, to capitalise on the interest in Afghanistan following 9/11. He writes about how women are mistreated, because that is all everyone knows about Afghanistan. As authentic as a Saudi who writes a book in Arabic about how all Americans are fat and ignorant. Gah.
But she says she was named for the flower, because that is also what the name means Why do you assume she (or at least the author) doesn't know the connection to the Quran as well. Why would she mention it if her mother told her she named her after the flower.
It's quite pathetically inaccurate. My personal favourite is Maryam, who says she is studying the Quran, and yet says her name means "tube rose". Clearly unaware that "Maryam" is the Arabic equivalent of "Mary" and there is an entire chapter in the Quran dedicated to Maryam, Mother of Christ.
We are a vocal minority If you search MN, you will see me ranting about 1000 SS on a number of occasions.
Not for literary reasons, like you, though. It was badly written for sure, but what riled me up was that it was just completely false, with often with wrong details, written in English by someone who knows very little about Afghanistan. Gah. Don't get me started.
...and didn't enjoy it as much as "The Kite Runner". I know I'm in the minority here,but i was disappointed.Too much horror,Tariq too saintly, and Rasheed too evil,then an unfeasibly happy ending. Anyone else not too keen?