|Honor and Polygamy|
Honor and Polygamy, a debut novel of about fifty thousand words by Omar Farhad, is an emotionally breaking story of fate and adventure that is driven by the cogs of war, anarchy, religion, love and crime.
Nick is an America Christian, husband and father of two who finds himself in Afghanistan in a circumstance that compels him to marry an Afghan girl who is born and raised at the far side of the cultural spectrum. Against all odds the strong love that grows closes the social gap between the two. But then Nick finds himself in the United States without his Afghan wife. He is determined to travel back to bring her at a time when the safe travel routes to Afghanistan have ceased to exist. He resorts to seeking the help of drug gangs. This brings him face-to face with extreme danger and uncertainty. Will he succeed in bringing his Afghan wife to the United States? If he does how will he explain choosing to become a polygamist to his wife, kids and friends in the United States?
The writing approach is modest and sustains one’s interest up till the point of real suspense. Farhad shows a strong ability to explore the minds of his characters and paint a vivid picture of the details that at times deceives the reader into believing that the book isn’t a work of fiction. In writing the book Farhad arms himself with a good understanding of the history, culture and politics of his ancestral nation. People that have known and love Afghanistan have often lived with the fear that should things fall apart for the Afghan Authorities the nation would be fragmented among warring factions with the name “Afghanistan” ceasing to exist. The author builds his fiction partly on the assumption that the fragmentation of the country has begun.
Reading the book has changed my perception of Afghanistan as it brings to fore the brilliant face of that nation that most people around the world aren’t aware of. This calls to mind the sad situation where, most times, people paint in their minds what they consider to be colored portraits of distant nations, by just the use of a single color. Reading Honor and Polygamy has reawakened my appreciation of the beauty of the cultural diversity of our planet. Isn’t that what literature is all about?