A Thousand Splendid Suns Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of A Thousand Splendid Suns

Mariam is the daughter of a wealthy married man and a servant. Her poverty and her status as a "harami", an illegitimate child, place her in a very lowly position in Afghanistan's culture. At fifteen, she is forced into a loveless marriage with the shoemaker Rasheed, a callous and selfish man. Rasheed eventually takes a second wife, Laila. While Mariam is initially jealous, she eventually develops a loving, sisterly bond with this woman. Laila marries Rasheed out of desperation after she is separated from her childhood sweetheart Tariq and loses her parents in the bombing of Kabul. The political upheavals in Afghanistan are seen over the course of several decades through the lens of how these changes affect the characters of the book.
Click here to see the rest of this review

Best part of story, including ending: The story is very moving, allowing readers to see how Afghanistan's culture affects the women of that country.

Best scene in story: The scene where Laila visits the village where Mariam grew up portrays the strong love between the two women.

Opinion about the main character: Mariam suffers a life of harsh limitations yet she retains her capacity for love.

The review of this Book prepared by J.A. Bowen a Level 2 American Robin scholar

Chapter Analysis of A Thousand Splendid Suns

Click on a plot link to find similar books!

Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   very sensitive (sigh) Time/era of story    -   1960's-1970's Ethnic/Regional/Religion    -   Arab/Muslim Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book War/Revolt/Disaster on civilians    -   Yes Ethnic/regional/gender life    -   Yes Conflict:    -   Afghanistan Woman's story?    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   homemaker Age:    -   long lived adults Ethnicity/Nationality    -   Other Asian


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   4 () City?    -   Yes Small town?    -   Yes Misc setting    -   prison

Writing Style

Amount of dialog    -   significantly more descript than dialog

Books with storylines, themes & endings like A Thousand Splendid Suns

Khaled Hosseini Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
2 Ways to Search!

Our Chief Librarian