My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Learning about other cultures is part of my life. Learning through folktales and fables adds a texture that can be missing from more ‘scholarly’ texts. The Honey Thief by Najaf Mazari & Robert Hillman is a fulfilling book that explains much of the culture and history of the Hazara people of Afghanistan. I certainly learned a lot more about everyday Muslim faith from the folktales in this book than from other sources I have studied. An added bonus are the recipes at the end of the book. The recipes are not given in any dry-as-dust formula! For example, the recipe for chela nakhod (a stew made with chickpeas and chicken) begins thus:
It is the night before the day on which you will make this chela nakhod. Take the chickpeas and soak them in a big bowl of hot water overnight. Read your book before you go to sleep. If you are married, be sure to kiss your wife or your husband before you close your eyes. Speak some loving words, if possible
I am going to try some of them.
Najaf Mazari lives in Melbourne after fleeing Afghanistan in 2001.