The Kite Runner

I finally actually checked off a book from my classics/required reading list! I thought it would be a little more exciting to check it off.

Khaled Hosseini’s Kite Runner is a powerful, intense story of Afghanistan’s violent history.

The story begins in the 1970s, following Amir’s childhood in Kabul. Amir and his friend Hassan grew up together, flying kites, seeing movies, playing cards. But Hassan is the son of Amir’s Hazara servant, and Amir is acutely award of the social differences, and growing more aware each day. And though Hassan would do anything for Amir, Amir suddenly finds himself faced with a choice–what is he willing to do for Hassan?

As war and violence erupts in Afghanistan, Amir and Hassan get separated and Amir gets a new life in America. But when the past comes calling, Amir is faced with one more choice: a way to be good again.

In what seems to be Hosseini’s style, The Kite Runner is graphic and intense. Hosseini’s pulls no punches in his descriptions of the war-torn country and the violence between Hazara and Pashtun people.

It’s a story of self-discovery, of craving a father’s love, of secrets, and of redemption. Amir has to own up to the decisions he made as a child, and also accept the decisions his father made that shaped his childhood and personality. And when the chance for redemption comes, Amir has to choose whether to right both their wrongs, or take the easy way out.

The Kite Runner is a powerful, beautifully written story, but it’s definitely not going to be everyone’s cup of tea–especially anyone sensitive to violence, trauma, and sexual abuse. But its rawness gives it a layer of emotion that is essential to the story.

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