The reading circuit for 2012 has concluded, and in my case, it’s back to Afghanistan where it started with the story of Enaiatollah Akbari, taken by his mother to Pakistan to escape the persecution of the Taliban.

I have been reading ‘Letters to my Daughters’, written by Fawzia Koofi in collaboration with Nadene Ghouri. It is subtitled ‘between terror and hope, the struggles of the first Afghan women in politics’. Fawzia Koofi was elected to be the vice-president of the lower chamber of the Afghan parliament when it was reformed in 2005 and intends to be a candidate in the 2014 presidential elections.

The book tells the story of her life, with letters to her two daughters and also to her dead mother and father seeded between the chapters. She was born in 1975 in Koofi in Badakhstan, the most northerly and impoverished region of Afghanistan. Her family was important in local politics and her father was a deputy to the first Afghan parliament which was called under the monarchy of Zaher Shah in 1965. Her grandfather had been an important local leader.