And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
Published by Riverhead, an imprint of Penguin
From the publisher:
An unforgettable novel about finding a lost piece of yourself in someone else.
Khaled Hosseini, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, has written a new novel about how we love, how we take care of one another, and how the choices we make resonate through generations. In this tale revolving around not just parents and children but brothers and sisters, cousins and caretakers, Hosseini explores the many ways in which families nurture, wound, betray, honor, and sacrifice for one another; and how often we are surprised by the actions of those closest to us, at the times that matter most. Following its characters and the ramifications of their lives and choices and loves around the globe—from Kabul to Paris to San Francisco to the Greek island of Tinos—the story expands gradually outward, becoming more emotionally complex and powerful with each turning page.
To say I was looking forward to this book being released doesn’t quite begin to cover it. I’d fiercely loved both The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, and I knew I was sure to love Hosseini’s newest novel, too.
What I had forgotten in the time since I’d last read one of his novels was the fact that he is SO GOOD at breaking my heart! I mean this in the best possible way, but also in the worst. If I tell you I was crying real tears, actually sobbing (while in public, waiting for my pedicure to dry at the nail place) within the FIRST FIFTY PAGES, would you understand what I mean by that?
Happily, the book wasn’t a complete sobfest and after that initial emotional chapter, things got a bit lighter for a time as Hosseini introduced more characters and allowed the reader to get to know them. And the Mountains Echoed is different from his previous two novels in that it’s more a series of interconnected stories than a typical novel. I have to admit that the format was a bit jarring to me, especially considering I was expecting a similar style to what he’s done before, but once I got into the rhythm of it I stopped caring – the book was just so gorgeous the format became irrelevant.
I fell in love with many of the characters in the novel, even though they each were incredibly flawed and some made horrible, unforgivable choices. I could just feel their pain and their triumphs, their humanity, through Hosseini’s beautiful writing and perfect characterization. There were so many moments throughout the book when a character’s decisions or just the simple course a character’s life took broke my heart, to the point where I would almost forget these people are fictional characters in a book, not real people I got to know and love.
I strongly suspect I haven’t given this book the appropriate words to describe just how great it is. I do have to admit that I probably liked this one least of Hosseini’s three books … but that’s like saying which is my least favorite pet – I love them all. He is truly brilliant with such a talent for storytelling and character building, I cannot recommend his books more highly enough. And the Mountains Echoed is just one more example of great work by an amazing author.