The Kite Runner
Author: Khaled Hosseini
Pages : [paperback] 372
Memorable Quote: “For you, a thousand times over.”
Favorite Character: Hassan
A novel set mostly in Afghanistan. The introverted and insecure afghan narrator, Amir, grows up in Afghanistan in the closing years of the monarchy and the first years of the short-lived republic. His best and most faithful friend, Hassan, is the son of a servant. Amir feels he betrays Hassan by not coming to his aid when Hassan is set on by bullies and furthermore forces Hassan and his father Ali to leave his father´s service. Amir´s relatively privileged life in Kaboul comes to an end when the communist regime comes to power and his extrovert father, Baba emigrates with him to the U.S. There Amir meets his future, afghan wife and marries her. Amir´s father dies in the U.S. and Amir receives a letter from his father´s most trusted business partner and, for a time, Amir´s surrogate father, which makes Amir return, alone, to a Taliban-dominated Afghanistan in search of the truth about himself and his family, and finally, a sort of redemption.
I had to read The Kite Runner as part of my summer reading, but I’ve actually read it beforehand. This novel is great, gripping, and at times terrifying and shocking. It holds nothing back, showing just how cruel life (and people) can be, while also demonstrating a path to redemption.
Amir is a complicated character, a boy who stood by and did nothing while something horrible happened to his longtime friend, Hassan, the boy he grew up alongside. He’s filled with flaws, like everyone else, and while he’s likable in some ways, he’s completely deplorable in others. There were moments when I really hated him-when I was supposed to hate him-and while I don’t usually like a novel that has a main character like that, here, it works.
The setting of The Kite Runner was fantastic. I could picture everything very clearly, and it was almost like I was there with the characters, seeing everything that they saw. I loved that about this book, because everything was simply understandable, while containing a deeper level at the same time.
I loved The Kite Runner, and hope more people give it a chance. It’s a wonderful, heart-wrenching book that I’ll pick up again and again. I definitely recommend it, and give it 5/5 stars.