Book Reviews,  books

Review- The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseni

Reading the negative reviews made me wary of reading Khaled Hosseni’s The Kite Runner. It’s not the best start to your reading experience, being told you’re going to hate something, is it? But still I read it.

The novel is set against the back drop of the final days of Afghanistan’s monarchy and the oppression of the Taliban. It tells the story of two boys, Amir and Hassan, and their friendship set against the social and political conflicts of the early 1970s. The two boys exist happily enough side by side, until the day of Kabul’s annual kite-fighting tournament, when a shocking event turns the characters’ lives upside down.

The Kite Runner is a beauty of a book, invoking a medley of emotions for the reader as they travel through the narrative. The book is a also a learning tool. From this novel, I learnt about the history, language and society of Afghanistan. Hosseni paints a vivid picture of the terrifying reality of life under the Taliban regime. I was also educated about the hobby of kite-running.

The characters are rounded, none less than Ali, the deeply flawed protagonist. There were times when I found myself feeling deep dislike for him. However that is intended- he is not meant to be wholly sympathetic. Ali is placed at a contrast to Hassan, who is so good you want to protect him from the world.

The book won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. As I said earlier, some people have detested it with a passion. It is a some points flawed and admittedly the ending was so contrived that it seemed as if the writer was begging to have it turned into a film. But it is still a fantastically well- written book that deserves the plaudits it has received.

Rating: 4/5

Leave a Reply