Who is similar to and who is the polar opposite of Baba in The Kite Runner in The Thorn Birds and A Thousand Splendid Suns?

In The Thorn Birds, Paddy Cleary is the most similar character to Baba, while Ralph de Bricassart is his polar opposite. In A Thousand Splendid Suns, the most similar character to Baba is Tariq, while his polar opposite is Nana.

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It is difficult to find characters who correspond to Baba in other works of fiction, since he has a larger-than-life, legendary quality which makes him unique. It is said in The Kite Runner that he once won a wrestling match with a bear, and his physical size and strength, as well as his heroic status, make this easy to believe.

Paddy Cleary in The Thorn Birds does not have Baba's forceful personality, but he is an indomitable character in a quieter way. Like Baba, he is the honest, hardworking patriarch of his family. Ironically, while both are strong father figures, their relationships with their own children are strained and somewhat distant. They are also similar in the story of their lives as immigrants, and their tragic deaths. Baba's polar opposite is Ralph de Bricassart, who seems initially as though he might have strong, heroic qualities, but proves to be weak and irresponsible.

In A Thousand Splendid Suns, Baba's heroic qualities are best paralleled in Tariq, who endures great hardship, including the loss of a leg at an early age. Tariq shows that he has the same force of character that Baba has, and the same sense of responsibility, though, like Paddy, he is less of an extrovert than Baba. The polar opposite of Baba is Nana, who becomes embittered and weakened by the trials of her life instead of facing and overcoming them.

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