Book Review: The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

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The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini- is an epic tale of fathers and sons, brotherhood, and betrayal that spans from horrors in the present to Afghanistan during the latter days of the monarchy. The Kite Runner is a masterfully written book set in a nation about to be destroyed and tells the unforgettable, heartbreaking tale of the unexpected connection between a rich child and the son of his father’s servant.

As I am a literature student, I had the assignment to compile a list of some worthy debut novels. That was when I first came to know about the book “The Kite Runner” among other books like “Jane Eyre” and “To Kill a Mockingbird”. As soon as I had an overview of the book, I instantly respected the author for writing such a powerful debut, and I instantly knew I had to read this book.

The Kite Runner is the first Afghan book to be published in English. It recounts a grand tale of family, love, and friendship against a never-before-told historical backdrop, evoking the expansive canvases of nineteenth-century Russian writers. The catastrophic history of Afghanistan during the past 30 years is the focus of this narration, which needs to be updated in style.

Excited much? I’m sure you are! Don’t worry. It doesn’t just end here. Keep on reading further to know more!

Book Review| The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

About the Author

khaled Hosseini Author of Kite Runner

Khalen Hosseini

The Kite Runner occurs largely in Kabul, Afghanistan, where Khaled Hosseini was born in 1965. Hosseini and his family settled in Paris in 1976 before making their way to America in 1980 as political refugees. Former diplomat and teacher Hosseini’s parents settled in San Jose, California, where they relied on aid until his father could support the family on his own through odd jobs.

Hosseini graduated from Santa Clara University with a biology degree in 1988 and from the University of California, San Diego, with a medical degree in 1993. He has been a practising doctor in Northern California since 2005 and focuses on internal medicine. Before penning his debut novel, The Kite Runner, which was based on an earlier short story of the same name, Hosseini wrote several works.

Hosseini had to find time to develop the tale because he was a doctor with a busy practice and plenty of patients; as a result, he wrote the novel in fragments in the early morning. Hosseini claims that his work as a medical professional has given him a great eye for people and their verbal and nonverbal cues.

The Young Adult Library Services Association chose Hosseini to receive an Alex Award in 2004, granted to the authors of the top 10 adult books for teenagers released the year before. Furthermore, in 2004, The Kite Runner received a Pushcart Prize nomination, and he received the Borders Group’s Original Voices award.

He married Roya, and together they have two kids. Northern California is home to the family. Hosseini revealed on social media in July 2022 that his 21-year-old child had come out as transgender.

Book Overview| The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini Cover image

Full Title: The Kite Runner

Author: Khaled Hosseini

Genre: Bildungsroman

Publishing Date: 29 May 2003

Page Count: 372

Main Characters: Assef, Rahim Khan, Sanaubar, Soraya, General Taheri, Khala, Amir, Baba, Hassan, Sohrab, Farzana, Farid, Ali

Themes: Hosseini draws a striking parallel between the onset of war and the loss of innocence in The Kite Runner.

Setting: The Kite Runner is set between the 1960s and the early 2000s in Afghanistan and the United States.


In Afghanistan in the 1970s, twelve-year-old Amir is determined to win the neighbourhood kite-flying competition, and his devoted friend Hassan swears to assist him. But, neither of the lads could have predicted what would happen to Hassan that day, a circumstance that would change their lives forever.

Amir realises that one day he must return to Afghanistan to find the one thing his new world cannot provide him: redemption when the Russians invade, and the family is forced to flee to America.

Book Summary | The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

This novel tells the tale of Amir and his father, Baba, in the Afghan town of Kabul. The Pashtuns are a significant ethnic group in the nation, including Amir and his father. Although they are Hazaras, Hassan and his father reside with Amir’s family. In Afghanistan, this tribe is a minority. Yet Hassan and Amir are close pals. On a certain day, Amir won a kite-flying contest. Assef, the neighborhood bully, ambushes Hassan as he runs for the kite and rapes her. Amir tries to save him but lacks the courage to do so.

Amir decides to accuse Hassan of stealing since he feels guilty and realises what he did wrong. Then, he and Hassan’s father depart Kabul. Amir and Baba are forced to leave Afghanistan a few years later due to the covert Soviet invasion.

Baba and Amir flee to America and establish themselves there. Amir then studies his English major while working weekends selling goods at the neighborhood market with his father. Here, Amir meets Soraya, and they are married. But soon after, Baba passes away, leaving the couple childless.

Soon later, Rahim Hassan, an Afghan acquaintance of Amir’s father, gets in touch with him. He learns that Hassan and his wife resided in his former home and had a son named Sohrab. Nevertheless, the Taliban executed Hassan and his wife.

Nowadays, Sohrab resides in an orphanage. Amir and his wife decide to travel to Afghanistan in search of Sohrab after learning that Hassan is their half-brother. Under the Taliban, Afghanistan has transformed, but with little work, he can meet Assef, now Sohrab’s master.

Amir and Assef fight, and the shrub use a slingshot to save him. Amir and Shoran travel to Pakistan. But Amir must return him to an orphanage before he can adopt him. Finally, he gets Sohrab to the US, where his wife and himself can adopt him.

My Takeaway From the Book

Beautiful painting of The Kite Runner

This book is one from which you can learn a truckload of lessons. I know, as I did. I remember that I once read a quote that said, “When you lie, you steal someone’s right to the truth”, but while reading this book, I felt it to my very core.

Amir’s father’s deceit altered Hassan’s life. Lying should never be an option. The truth can always be told. Being truthful can be challenging, but remember that when we lie, we are stealing someone else’s rights and have no right to do so.

Another valuable lesson that one can learn from this book is that it’s always possible to be good, and there’s always a way to do it. Amir spent most of his life carrying the burden of his sins, but once he performed a kind deed for his friend—possibly the correct one—he was set free like the wind. It took him some time to come to terms with it and have the guts, but in the end, he stood up for his friend. In fact, by the book’s conclusion, every character had found a way to change for the better.

This book serves as a gentle reminder that being a nice person is possible at all times. Everyone makes errors. There is a way to atone for our bad deeds.

What Did I Think of the Book? The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

Genuinely, there were several times in this book when I started crying because it was so lovely and moving. It isn’t easy to express how much I adore this book. Along with war and the devastation of a nation, this book is full of horrifying personal tragedies.

Even the people we love occasionally let us down and disappoint us. Life is not always easy for us in this world. Yet, this author did a fantastic job of portraying flawed characters who were trying their best.


This book is a must-read and deserves 4.5 stars out of 5.

Conclusion| The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

This book gave me chills and thrills in many ways than possible. It made me smile, feel sad, horrified, and even cry, but overall, it was a satisfying read. I still can’t believe it was written almost 20 years ago. I loved this book, and I’m sure you’ll love it too!

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