Steve Isaak reviews a review of “The Kite Runner”.

Steve Isaak is one of my favorite writers.  I met him on ERWA a while ago, and though I can’t claim I understand all he writes, he’s a powerful and visionary writer.
And he makes science fiction  accessible and magical for one who has fear of that genre.  And he is damn funny.

I am also beholden for his review of my first book, “A Seasoning of Lust”.  I saw my own writing through new eyes and some how it changed my perspective about that book.  The main complaint from a number of readers was there were too many themes, but that didn’t detour Steve at all.  In fact, he gloried in  it.

Lady Nyo

Steve writes:

This book review transcends the usual book review in that it’s more philosophical in its view than the book reviews that focus on the nuts n’ bolts of the writing: characterization, structure, theme, taking it into a more PERSONAL realm for you, and us, the readers.

I tend to be less philosophical in my book reviews — I’m a nuts n’ bolts guy, because, at the end of the day, writing is not a mystical experience, it’s everyday grunt-through-it, deal-with-the-writing-elements work. There’s delicious inspiration, and moments of glee (especially during the plotting/characterization phase), but you’re more spiritual about it.

I sometimes wish I could be that way, but we’re built the way we’re built, right? Might as well celebrate our strengths in a world that would tear us, as individuals and groups, down. :)

That’s why I enjoy your writing, and why I could appreciate why you appreciated “The Kite Runner,” a novel I couldn’t get into.

Hosseini has plenty o’ mood, and he’s done everything right (in terms of building characters, structuring the story), but it felt too technical for me — like he was trying to build up to some momentous event that would be less-than-momentous for me, the reader.

Bear in mind, I’m mostly a crime and horror-fiction reader, with occasional reader-forays into non-fiction books.

Your take on it has me admiring the novel a bit more than I did, but I think my cultural differences with the author were too much to surmount. Other readers, thankfully, felt differently. :)

Thanks for the recommend, Jane. Any experience that prompts us to think and appreciate beauty (that is, become better people) is a worthwhile one, and you’ve certainly added one of those to my daily life.


Hey Steve!  I don’t know about ‘becoming better people’ while reading “A Thousand Splendid Suns”, the second book by Hosseini.  He detailed the humdrum daily violence and fear these two women, both married to the same man, so well and horrifically,   I felt a killer instinct rising from my gut as I read.  Now, to me, when an author can involve you in such anger, pathos, injustice, …well, that is a mark of a good writer.  Involvement and connection is what we strive for, and if we have a story that has all those human elements of breaking out for some sort of freedom, ….it gets to the gut of readers.

You may be a ‘nuts and bolts’ kind of writer, but you engage readers on a wicked level. And your stories flow effortlessly and into the mind of this reader.  And many of them haunt.

Steve Isaak is working on his own book and hopefully it will be published in a while.  He’s a careful writer and  is NEVER boring, and with Steve, it’s grab your hat and hold on tight.  I can’t wait to review HIS book!

His website is well worth visiting:

And Steve?  I find your writing to have passion and spirituality.

Firing on all cylindars!

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