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Author Patricia Nicol reveals a selection of the best books on regime change

Author Patricia Nicol reveals a selection of the best books on regime change

  • Patricia Nicol has revealed her best selection of books on regime change 
  • Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky, titled Storm In June, describes several families’ flight from Paris in June 1940, ahead of the invading German army
  • The Kite Runner explored the impact of the Soviet invasion and Taliban takeover 


It was with such a mixture of disbelief, awe and humility that I watched footage from Afghanistan recently, of women protesting against the Taliban. Not just women — some brothers and husbands had come out to support their call for the right to work and education.

Some protests were dispersed by gunfire. At others, protesters were reportedly whipped. Even at apparently peaceful protests, what might be the ramifications for marchers? Might every one of them be marked as trouble-makers? Might their families face discrimination?

I know there are jubilant scenes of regime change in literature too: of Allied tanks rolling into occupied European towns, and reunions. But it is the scenes of flight from those fearing oppression or reprisals that have been foremost in my mind.

Khaled Hosseini is, of course, an Afghan-born writer. His bestselling first novel The Kite Runner explored the impact of the Soviet invasion and Taliban takeover, from the perspective of two motherless boys.

Women have been the victims of men’s wars since the dawn of time. Pat Barker’s The Women Of Troy, a follow-up to her Homeric reimagining The Silence Of The Girls, begins within the Trojan horse, then evokes Troy’s destruction and the Greek’s pyrrhic victory, from Briseis’s viewpoint, an enslaved former queen. Khaled Hosseini is, of course, an Afghan-born writer. His bestselling first novel The Kite Runner explored the impact of the Soviet invasion and Taliban takeover, from the perspective of two motherless boys.

The first part of Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky, titled Storm In June, describes several families’ flight from Paris in June 1940, ahead of the invading German army.

Nemirovsky wrote from experience. A Jew, she fled to France, where she wrote the first two parts of the intended five-part novel, before being arrested. She died at Auschwitz in 1942. More than 60 years later, the rediscovery and release of the book made it a sensation.

Women have been the victims of men’s wars since the dawn of time. Pat Barker’s The Women Of Troy, a follow-up to her Homeric reimagining The Silence Of The Girls, begins within the Trojan horse, then evokes Troy’s destruction and the Greek’s pyrrhic victory, from Briseis’s viewpoint, an enslaved former queen.

Khaled Hosseini is, of course, an Afghan-born writer. His bestselling first novel The Kite Runner explored the impact of the Soviet invasion and Taliban takeover, from the perspective of two motherless boys.

His follow-up, A Thousand Splendid Suns, explored the same period, but from a female vantage. Mariam and Laila are thrown together by war and misfortune. Forced to share a household, their at first distrustful relationship becomes a loving one.

I hope those brave Afghan women continue to be heard and keep safe.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk