People aren’t defined by the city they are from, the religion they practice or the environment they are in. They are bigger than all these words. They have the talent to surprise us and show us a side of them that we never knew existed. All we need to do is give them a chance.
Just a few hours back, I finished this beautiful book titled ‘The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul’ by Deborah Rodriguez. As the name suggests, the book is set in the capital city of Afghanistan. It is about five women who despite being from very different backgrounds find a friend in each other.
Sunny owns the ‘little coffee shop’. The love of her life is out on a secret mission and she hasn’t heard from him in a while. Keeping her cafe and customers safe is what keeps her going.
Halajan has two children, one is settled abroad and one is the gatekeeper of Sunny’s cafe. Hala has lived her whole life in Kabul and has seen it change from better to worse. She lost her husband years ago but love has crawled back into her life in the form of her childhood friend, Rashif.
Yazmina belonged to a poor family. Her uncle was in massive debt and she was taken away by the warlords when he couldn’t repay them the amount. She is with child and seperated from her younger sister Lyla. Lost in the city of Kabul, she is taken by Sunny as a help in her cafe.
Isabel is a journalist from Britain who is in Afghanistan in search of a story for BBC. Behind her tough appearance, she hides a secret that haunts her every day.
And finally, Candace. She was once married to a powerful man but she ended that relationship to be with Wakil – an Afghan whom she dearly loves. All her energy goes into helping Wakil in his work.
What I most loved about the book is that despite being set in Kabul, it is not just about the city. It is about the people. More about the people in fact. How despite having so many troubles, they have the zeal to make things better. Human bonds have been very realistically knitted in this book. Characters know their boundaries and they each have goodness in them.
The language is simple which further helps the reader in connecting with the characters. The book will make you cry in between, it will have its own moments of sorrow but in its own simple way, it will teach you that life is big and it does give people many chances. It is up to them what they want to accept and what they want to reject.
Deborah Rodriguez is an American author, hairdresser, and humanitarian. Apart from this book, she has written Kabul Beauty School: An American Woman Goes Behind the Veil and Margarita Wednesdays: Making a New Life by the Mexican Sea.
The sequel of The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul by the name of Return to the Little Coffee Shop of Kabul also came in the year 2018.
Hope you like this book as much as I did. Let me know your feedback 🙂