This book, overall, was very difficult for me to read because it had many turns and difficult scenes to process. This book had many themes in it, such as equality, family, and government. Mariam and Laila both go through the hardships of being women in the Middle East. Women barely have any rights and are not allowed to even get an education. When the Taliban took over, women had no rights at all. This book also showed how hard the family life was. Mariam's own father did not even want to accept her. Laila's mother barely showed her attention because her brothers were more important to her. The book also had the theme of government. The government where Mariam and Laila were changed a lot because of the communists, Republic of Afganistan, and the Taliban. With each new government takeover came new rules and laws. This book overall included many things that made it very complex and hard to read for me. It involved a lot of modern issues, and some of them really bothered me. In spite of this, I enjoyed the story because it had a good story line and I liked to keep up with it.