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August 29, 2010

31 Down, 21 To Go "Earth and Ashes" (52 Books, 52 Weeks)

At only 81 pages, Atiq Rahimi's novel Earth and Ashes is physically slight, but may be the most powerful and affecting book about war I have read in years.

Rahimi is a documentary filmmaker as well as writer, and his panoramic scenes evoke an incredible wealth of emotion in this book about the Soviet war with Afghanistan. A detailed, personal, and vivid account of life in an occupied country, Earth and Ashes is the story of a grandfather (along with his grandson) visiting his son after the grandfather's village is razed and the son's wife is killed. Rahimi's spare prose puts faces on the people of Afghanistan, and the humanity of his characters (as well as their hardships) simply breaks your heart.

My next book is Suzanne Collins' novel The Hunger Games.

also at Largehearted Boy:

other 52 Books, 52 Weeks reviews

Online "best of 2009" book lists
Online "best of 2008" book lists
Book Notes (authors create playlists for their book)
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)

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