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The Bookseller of Kabul - Asne Seierstad

Paperback Published: 9th August 2004
ISBN: 9781844080472
Number Of Pages: 288

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Two weeks after September 11th, award-winning journalist Asne Seierstad went to Afghanistan to report on the conflict. In the following spring she returned to live with a bookseller and his family for several months.

The Bookseller of Kabul is the fascinating account of her time spent living with the family of thirteen in their four-roomed home. Bookseller Sultan Khan defied the authorities for twenty years to supply books to the people of Kabul. He was arrested, interrogated and imprisoned by the communists and watched illiterate Taliban soldiers burn piles of his books in the street. He even resorted to hiding most of his stock in attics all over Kabul. But while Khan is passionate in his love of books and hatred of censorship, he is also a committed Muslim with strict views on family life.

As an outsider, Seierstad is able to move between the private world of the women - including Khan's two wives - and the more public lives of the men. The result is an intimate and fascinating portrait of a family which also offers a unique perspective on a troubled country.

About the Author

Asne Seierstad (born 1970) has reported from Russia, China, Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq, amongst many other countries. She has received numerous awards for her journalism.

Industry Reviews

Written sometimes more like fiction than fact...this is a remarkable portrait, with deftly woven accounts of weddings and journeys, books and bookselling, relations and squabbles, firmly anchored by pleasing details about food and customs, all set against the backdrop of a derelict city, filthy and crammed but not defeated - Independant

Remarkable...honestly and intelligently written - Daily Telegraph

Fascinating...a colourful portrait of people struggling to survive in the most brutal circumstances...bear[s] witness to the power of literature to withstand even the most repressive regime - Daily Mail

An intimate portrait of Afghani people quite unlike any other book available on the country. It is a compelling read - Sunday Times

The Bookseller of Kabul


I have ready many books of this genre and unfortunately it fell short for me. An easy read but I could certainly put it down.

Queensland, Australia


The Bookseller of Kabul

2.0 1


ISBN: 9781844080472
ISBN-10: 1844080471
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 288
Published: 9th August 2004
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.9 x 12.9  x 2.1
Weight (kg): 0.23
Edition Number: 1