A Novel of Afghanistan
An intimate look at the lives, loves, horrors, and dreams of girls and women in an Afghan mountain village under Taliban rule A heartbreaking tragedy in the vein of The Kite Runner from a major English-speaking Afghan figure famous for his books and long career in politics Siamak Herawi brings Afghan women centerstage and takes us deep into the heart of his motherland to witness the reality of their lives under the Taliban’s most extreme interpretation of Islam. Based on true stories, the result is a sobering and harrowing tale that relates the current ethos of a country under occupation by one power or another for more than half a century. Told in a direct, conversational prose, this chorus of voices offers us a vivid picture of the endless cycle of the suffering of girls and women in the grip of the Taliban authorities, of the imbalance of power and opportunity. The central figures illuminate the power of love, friendship, and generosity in the face of poverty and oppression. Their experiences and dilemmas have a visceral power and we become deeply attached to Kowsar, Geesu, and Simin. These are testaments of resilience, hope, courage, and visceral fear, of doors of opportunity opening just a crack that offer a way out. In Sara Khalili’s vibrant and nuanced translation from the Persian, Tali Girls tears down the curtain and exposes the treacherous realities of what women are up against in modern-day, war-torn Afghanistan.