Sunday, April 21, 2013

The Honey Thief by Najaf Mazari, Robert Hillman

book cover
The Honey Thief
by Najaf Mazari,
Robert Hillman

ISBN-13: 9780670026487
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Viking Adult
Released: April 18, 2013

Source: Review copy from the publisher.

Book Description, Modified from Back Cover:
This extraordinary book, derived from the long oral tradition of storytelling in Afghanistan, presents a mesmerizing portrait of a people who triumph with intelligence and humor over the oppression of political dictators and an unforgiving landscape. The Honey Thief reveals an Afghanistan of greater richness and humanity than is conveyed in newspaper headlines.

My Review:
The Honey Thief is a collection of folk lore stories. Some of these short stories are historical tales, others are more moral tales, but all are set in Afghanistan and come from the viewpoint of the Hazara--a minority tribe in Afghanistan. These stories give insight into the mindset and customs of these people along with a history lesson about what they've lived through. May of the stories have a rural setting and give insight into daily rural living throughout their history.

The storyteller, Najaf, understood that Westerners come from a different mindset and explained the differences with gentle humor. I found the tales interesting because they offered a look into a different culture. The recipes at the end are worth reading even if you don't cook. They give insight to the culture and some of the directions were quite funny as you'd never find them in American cookbooks: "...leave them alone for maybe half an hour. Read a book, a good one....a peaceful book" (from page 276).

Overall, I'd highly recommend this book to those who like folk lore and are interested in other cultures.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

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