The Kite Runner by Khaled HosseiniThe Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseinisticker-burst

The Kite Runner

byKhaled Hosseini

Paperback | May 11, 2004

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about

“I sat on a bench near a willow tree and watched a pair of kites soaring in the sky. I thought about something Rahim Khan said just before he hung up, almost as an afterthought, ‘There is a way to be good again.’”

Now in paperback, one of the year’s international literary sensations -- a shattering story of betrayal and redemption set in war-torn Afghanistan.

Amir and Hassan are childhood friends in the alleys and orchards of Kabul in the sunny days before the invasion of the Soviet army and Afghanistan’s decent into fanaticism. Both motherless, they grow up as close as brothers, but their fates, they know, are to be different. Amir’s father is a wealthy merchant; Hassan’s father is his manservant. Amir belongs to the ruling caste of Pashtuns, Hassan to the despised Hazaras.

This fragile idyll is broken by the mounting ethnic, religious, and political tensions that begin to tear Afghanistan apart. An unspeakable assault on Hassan by a gang of local boys tears the friends apart; Amir has witnessed his friend’s torment, but is too afraid to intercede. Plunged into self-loathing, Amir conspires to have Hassan and his father turned out of the household.

When the Soviets invade Afghanistan, Amir and his father flee to San Francisco, leaving Hassan and his father to a pitiless fate. Only years later will Amir have an opportunity to redeem himself by returning to Afghanistan to begin to repay the debt long owed to the man who should have been his brother.

Compelling, heartrending, and etched with details of a history never before told in fiction, The Kite Runner is a story of the ways in which we’re damned by our moral failures, and of the extravagant cost of redemption.
Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, the son of a diplomat whose family received political asylum in the United States in 1980. He lives in northern California, where he is a physician. The Kite Runner is his first novel.
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Title:The Kite RunnerFormat:PaperbackDimensions:400 pages, 8 × 5 × 1.01 inPublished:May 11, 2004Publisher:Doubleday CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0385660073

ISBN - 13:9780385660075

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing yet heartbreaking I bought this a while ago and I'm glad I picked it up. It can get quite heavy at times but the ending is bittersweet with the right amount of hope.
Date published: 2018-04-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from freaking amazing I can't believe it took me this long to read the Kite Runner and it was AMAZING. Although I found it to be quite heavy for high schoolers to read it, as an adult, I appreciate it so much more! Highly highly recommend!
Date published: 2018-04-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Read this book in high school. I read this book in high school, later watching the movie, and it wonderfully shows how a single disadvantage can ruin friends (and their family's) life. Mostly taking place in the Middle East, it describes some customs that we are not used to in Canada. How the main character pulls through for his son, and then later his friend is beautiful.
Date published: 2018-04-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful Beautiful read about love, friendship, and family. Loved it!
Date published: 2018-04-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Honest and real Amazingly written characters with so much depth. Made me cry a lot. Gives you a glimpse of life in Afghanistan at the time.
Date published: 2018-03-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from unforgettable I was made to read this book while doing an English course in college many years ago. Although I didn't want to read it initially, once I started, i was hooked. A range of emotions throughout the chapters and now, over ten years later, as I sit deciding what books to have my teenagers read, this is still one that comes to mind automatically. Tis truly is a book, a story, that you will not forget.
Date published: 2018-03-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from WAAAHH THIS BOOK IS LITERALLY MY TOP 1 OF ALL THE BOOKS THAT I'VE READ ALL MY LIFE. Once you start reading this, it's impossible to put it down. I swear you wouldn't be able to move on for the next few days or maybe weeks. I cried a bunch of times when I was reading this. It will show you the uglies of life that you wouldn't even imagine happening until you read it here.
Date published: 2018-03-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking A tragic story that will make you cry but also want more. Khalid Hosseini truly is a genius as he has given us one of the best novels of all time.
Date published: 2018-03-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully Written! A book you can read over and over. Sweet and bitter at the same time.
Date published: 2018-03-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from One of my favourite books I received this book as a gift from a loved one and I absolutely adore this book. It has taught me so much and introduced me Khalid Hosseini!
Date published: 2018-03-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from heartbreaking this book was beautiful and yet terrible in a sense of its moral tellings. this book left me awestruck and i had to think about the content for many days after. i think this book it wonderful and its written very well.
Date published: 2018-03-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An interesting read I thought the book was very well written. It provides a glimpse into Afghan life and portrays the Middle East in a positive light, contrary to what we see in the media and American culture. I liked how Khaled Hosseini stressed the importance of family in Afghan culture.
Date published: 2018-03-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Read Beautifully written, a heart breaking story about racism, friendship, loyalty and betrayal.
Date published: 2018-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book I read this after so many recommendations and it just opened my perspective to a whole new level. I never knew that Taliban has been so cruel to people. This book is beautifully written and must read for all
Date published: 2018-03-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book Such an emotional and well-written book! Definitely recommend this to anyone.
Date published: 2018-02-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Brilliant This was a reading selection for my book club. Brilliantly written.
Date published: 2018-02-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from definitely worth reading It's a beautiful but heartbreaking story. #plumreview
Date published: 2018-02-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from SO GOOD so amazing.. so in love with his story... heartbreaking
Date published: 2018-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Recommended Amazing story. Amazing lessons. Recommended for everyone that is looking for a good story.
Date published: 2018-02-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent book I read this book in high school years ago, and I still think about it (years later, in my mid-twenties). It's poignant, stark and hard to put down. I've recommended this book so many times over the years, and I still want to read it again myself.
Date published: 2018-01-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing story This book has an amazing story that breaks your heart but keeps you enthralled in the book the entire time. Definitely a good read #plumreview
Date published: 2018-01-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Worth the Read, but Very Heavy In my highschool, most students read this book in their grade 10 English class. My class decided to read a different story, and I am so glad they did. Now that I am in my 20's reading this book, it is a lot easier to get through the heartbreaking tragedies and also understand the deeper underlying meaning, and the truly complicated main character.
Date published: 2018-01-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from heartbreaking This book was so beautifully written but also devasting and heartbreaking. In my top 10 ! #plumreview
Date published: 2018-01-23
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Difficult But Good An incredible, intense, heartbreaking story that I would recommend anyone to read at least once. However, I did find it a bit difficult to get through.
Date published: 2018-01-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Definitely worth reading Heart-wrenching and heart-warming at the same time, with a lot of poetic imagery.
Date published: 2018-01-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent Book I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I'd read it several years ago but picked it up again because I didn't remember the story. I enjoyed it even more the second time I read it. The story is emotional and heartbreaking but ultimately optimistic. Beautiful book!
Date published: 2018-01-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from heavy, but worth it one of my favourite stories. it adds weight to your life
Date published: 2018-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Classic I read this book back in high school and absolutely fell in love with the novel and Khaled Hosseini. He reminded me how much I love reading. This book is unbelievably eye-opening and really makes you thankful for everything that you have.
Date published: 2018-01-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from He did it again Khaled is one of the only writers who knows how to make me cry. Heart wrenching from beginning to end, but I'm addicted to the emotion. He is a beautiful storyteller. #plumreview
Date published: 2018-01-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favourite Book I read this book 4 years ago, and until date it is probably my favourite book. Very bittersweet story that tugs at your heartstrings. Would highly recommend; it changed my outlook on life.
Date published: 2017-12-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Tugs at your heart! This was such an emotional read for me and the story just came to life in my eyes. As a reader, I was definitely pulled in!
Date published: 2017-12-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing I read this book in high school and I can honestly tell you that this is one of the best books i've ever read. Easily one of my favourite books!!
Date published: 2017-12-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from favorite book this is my favorite book ever. the author has a really nice style. couldnt put the book down.
Date published: 2017-12-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from If I could give it six stars, I would Honestly, words can not explain how beautiful this novel is. It is devastating and stunning all at once. I would definitely recommend this book, even to the pickiest of readers.
Date published: 2017-12-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from heartbreaking story I really enjoyed this book, truly a heartbreaking story of one mans journey Highly recommend
Date published: 2017-12-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from touching i cried while reading the book, such a touching story.
Date published: 2017-12-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book This is such a wonderful book. Couldn't put it down.
Date published: 2017-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favourite Beautifully written, amazing story. Hard to put down. A must-read
Date published: 2017-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Book! I read this for school and it has inspired me to read more books and learn more about the ongoing problems in this world. It is a little graphic but it adds to the feel of the story.
Date published: 2017-11-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Simply Marvelous I had to read this novel years back for one of my high school English classes. Little did I know that it would remain as one of my all-time favourite books. The way the author makes you feel so involved in the story, as if you were a character yourself, forces you to feel a myriad of emotions. It touches upon many issues and will definitely remain in your heart and mind forever.
Date published: 2017-11-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Eye Opening Definitely recommend this great book. It usually takes me a month to finish a book, but The Kite Runner was so engaging I could not put it down. A must for all readers.
Date published: 2017-11-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Must-read! It is a very-well written story. Definitely not a casual read (I wanted one for the summer). It took me awhile to get into. Overall, a good must-read!
Date published: 2017-11-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A great book I read this book in the 6 months before I deployed to Afghanistan with the army, and it was fascinating to read about a world so different to mine. It breaks my heart that there are people living real lives with real struggles and dangers, while my life is so safe and mundane.
Date published: 2017-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A must read Such an amazing novel, heart-wrenching and captivating.
Date published: 2017-11-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This needs to be read by every book lover, it is amazing.
Date published: 2017-11-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book I was not much of a reader when I picked up this book. This book was so engaging and left me with so many emotions that I have now become a reader (in hopes to find a book that could leave me feeling as uncomfortable, happy, angry, hopeful, and sad as this book was able to make me feel). A extremely well written novel that drives a variety of emotions as you are walked through the story.
Date published: 2017-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully Written Novel Read it as a class novel, it was a book I did not want to put down!
Date published: 2017-11-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Prepare to cry! Beautifully written story about brotherhood, fatherhood, friendship, and morals. Khaled Hosseini does an incredible job at captivating the reader - I couldn't put this down!
Date published: 2017-11-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Start here and Cry! If you are looking to start reading this authors books this is where you should start. But get ready to get addicted to the book and have tissues ready!
Date published: 2017-10-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A must read I put off reading this book for ages. I'm so glad I finally got around to doing so. I highly recommend reading it- and to take your time whilst doing so. I have a habit of reading so quickly it seems as though I'm skimming books. This is an incredibly moving story, and worth taking the time to digest.
Date published: 2017-10-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful and eye opening I had been wanting to read this book since I was in school and when I my coworker was giving away a bunch of books I knew I had to read it! After reading I'm very interested in reading other works by Khaled Hosseini
Date published: 2017-10-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this book! This book left it's mark on me. For a good part of the book, I could not look away! It had taken over me!! Yes, towards the end it was pretty predictable, but these things had to happen to make this story! It was tough to read, but I couldn't stop. It was emotionally draining to read, but I needed to read it. I will definitely be reading more books by Khaled Hosseini in the future.
Date published: 2017-10-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic Novel A chilling book about redemption with important themes and life lessons. Would DEFINITELY recommend!
Date published: 2017-10-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Tragically beautiful story about loss and redemption I read this book in Grade 11 English class and absolutely loved it. The story spans most of Amir’s childhood and into his mid-adult life. There are so many emotional layers and interesting explorations of the father-son relationship. Part I was my favourite, when Amir and Hassan are children living in Kabul, especially the chapters about kite fighting and Hassan being a natural kite runner. The brotherly dynamic of their friendship is a thread that runs through the entire book, and I really like how it comes full circle in Part III. Although told from Amir’s point of view, it is plain to see that this book is about Hassan. Khaled Hosseini is a brilliant writer, including rich details about the settings and characters.
Date published: 2017-10-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I have never before experienced such level of tragedy in a book I used to have a habit of taking a 2km walk to a McDonalds every morning, ordering coffee and sitting down with a book to start off my day. When I tried that with this book, I had to leave the store because I didn't want to be that weirdo who cries at McDonalds. Khaled captures a level of emotion in his novels that I've never experienced before. I would say this book is definitely worth the read.
Date published: 2017-10-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A chilling book for everyone I read this book at a young age and I am so happy I did. taught me lessons, well written.
Date published: 2017-10-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A fascinating novel I got the book few weeks ago and finished reading it quite quickly. This is a book about friendship, relationship between father and son, and the choices people make in life and their consequences. After reading it, the quote that Hassan says to Amir, and at the end Amir says to Sohrab, stays in my mind and I cannot forget it: "For you, a thousand times over."
Date published: 2017-10-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Classic great story and characters
Date published: 2017-10-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful and haunting I read this book years ago and it still is one of favourites. Great book!! Highly recommend.
Date published: 2017-09-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favorite books! This book brought me to tears and ripped at my heart but will live inside me forever.
Date published: 2017-09-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My favourite book! I read this book for the first time for an essay I had to write in school. In the beginning I didn't realize how much I would love this book, but out of all the books I have read, this is my favourite one ever! I bought an extra copy just so it can stay in my collection with no bent pages! Such a powerful story, so well written beyond words, many deep meaningful life lessons. This book has won my heart and I don't think no book can replace its place.
Date published: 2017-09-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVED IT!! This book is soo good, I loved the story. It was sad but a beautiful story and loved the characters!
Date published: 2017-09-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't stop reading till the end! I bought this book and later found out I was going to read it in my AP English class. I read the whole book in a day and read it twice after. Emotionally and mentally touching. I highly recommend it if you want a good read!
Date published: 2017-09-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully written novel! Spectacular! I only recently started to read leisurely, and I'm so glad I chose this novel to read. I regret that I've lost so many years at experiencing absolutely amazing novels such as The Kite Runner. It was such a powerful novel with such meaningful life lessons. There's no words to explain how stunning this novel is and how much it touched my heart. I will definitely read this novel again. Highly recommended!
Date published: 2017-09-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An Amazing Book This book is a must read. The plot and characters were amazing and beautifully depicted and written!
Date published: 2017-08-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Read Read this book for in English class and while I found myself crying at several parts, I fell in love with it. Great characters and a heartfelt message. Highly recommended.
Date published: 2017-08-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Highly recommended I love this book. It made my eyes wet several times with amazing characters, scenes, stories and messages. A story of a man and his road of redemption for the betrayal he had done to his childhood true friend. "There is a way to be good again." It's never too late to treasure what you have or what you have lost. Go and read this book. I have learned so much from it: The history and culture of Afghanistan, story, writing, and the human heart. Highly recommended.
Date published: 2017-08-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Must Read The Kite Runner is a powerful read. I read this book for a high school Ap English course. I still remember that one shocking scene from the book. While at parts the novel is hard to read, it is necessary to read.
Date published: 2017-08-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love and Regrets A poignant and touching story about the friendship of two boys through the eyes of Amir. Betrayal, rape, war, religion, immigration and other sensitive topics are all brought together in this wonderfully crafted narrative. Our narrative and flawed protagonist has a way to become good again and the flashbacks only add on the suspense of what happened to change the lives of Amir and Hassan forever.
Date published: 2017-08-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Must read This book puts you on an emotional rollercoaster. Beautifully written and a gripping novel. I couldn't put it down.
Date published: 2017-08-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I couldn't put it down! I have read this book from cover to cover multiple times now and each time I read it, it becomes better. This incredible story brought me to tears many times and I personally think that if you read this and don't have a good cry your not human. This novel really made me think about the privileges that I have been afforded in my life and the struggles that many people go through, its brutally real and an incredible piece of literature.
Date published: 2017-08-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This book is amazing. Everyone needs to read this book.
Date published: 2017-08-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Must read! This book has an incredible story, but will bring you to (near) tears. It is very well written. A must read for sure!
Date published: 2017-08-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from SO GOOD! I read this book when I was in grade 12 and honestly this book really kept me hooked. Finished this book in 2 days! Such an amazing story. Sad but such an amazing story!
Date published: 2017-08-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A must read This is the best book I have read in a long time. I was disappointing that it took me so long to grab it from my shelf. It is truly moving.
Date published: 2017-08-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful! Loved this book. One of the first book club books we read and I adored it. (We all did!) Make sure to also read A Thousand Splendid Suns - another beautifully written novel.
Date published: 2017-08-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVED IT The book is amazing, sad as well, but an amazing story!
Date published: 2017-07-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing But Heart Wrenching Story I was gifted this book by a friend and read it when I was twelve. It has heavy content and can be harsh for young readers. The book deeply touched me and I would recommend it to anyone who is emotionally stable because it can be triggering and it made me look at life in a different perspective from a young age. The story follow a young boy, Amir, and his friend/ servant Hassan. They both go through hardships in life and when Amir and his father move to America, contact is lost. After years pass by, Amir receives a letter and decides to go back to Afghanistan and do right by Hassan.
Date published: 2017-07-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from All time FAV ! the story, characters, flow is absolutely perfect !
Date published: 2017-07-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great read!! The test of friendship is exemplified cover to cover. Emotional and fun read!
Date published: 2017-07-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful story This is the #1 book that has had impact in my life. Reminded me of my relationship with my Father the first years of our emigration in Canada from the Philippines. I read this every year and get the same feels every time, as if I am finding out about the story for the first time ever.
Date published: 2017-07-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Such a great story of a great friendship.
Date published: 2017-07-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from beautiful story one of the most beautiful tales of friendship written!
Date published: 2017-07-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Tragic and Well Written I could not put this book down. The symbolism really added to this meaningful and tragic story.
Date published: 2017-07-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read! This was the first book I read by Khaled Hosseini, and I immediately fell in love with him as an author. His stories are starkly honest, making them difficult to read at times but all the more compelling and difficult to put down. An amazing read, along with his other novels. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-07-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved beautiful book. will make you cry. loved all Khaled Hosseini's books. he is a gifted writer.
Date published: 2017-07-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Devastating, but a great read. Khaled Hosseini is a gifted story teller. This book is a testament to that fact. The story is devastating, but it was so beautifully told that I could not put it down.
Date published: 2017-07-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing!! Loved every bit of it. Couldn't put it down, it was a real page turner.
Date published: 2017-06-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An emotional journey Be warned, this book can be very hard to read at times. The subject matter is too important to be sugar-coated, so it is quite a heavy novel. I read this in high school and it was sad but moving. It really shows how much of an effect one person has on so many lives, and how seemingly minor decisions can have such tragic consequences. Ultimately, this is a hopeful story, surrounded by loss. It's told from Amir's point of view, and we follow him as he navigates growing up and dealing with his demons.
Date published: 2017-06-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favourite book of all time! I could re read this book over and over again. Khaled does a phenomenal job with his writing and engages the reader right until the end. You will fall in love with this book and become engaged in a world that you will leave having learnt so much!
Date published: 2017-06-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Inspiring This book is a beautifully painful journey to some wonderful conclusions. The exploration of a this culture is so refreshing and the characters make you ache for them.
Date published: 2017-06-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from SUPERB!! This book is beautifully written!! It taught me a lot about family, loyalty, courage, hope, culture, social classes, and racial issues, especially in Afghanistan. "For you, a thousand times over..." -- KH
Date published: 2017-06-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from WILL NEVER FORGET THIS BOOK!! I learned a lot about Afghanistan through this novel. Especially the Hazara people. It was really rivetting and had a lot of shocking elements at the end. Beautifully written.
Date published: 2017-05-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Simply amazing I was unable to put The Kite Runner down. It sheds light on the situation in Afghanistan and the value of family.
Date published: 2017-05-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book!! I just loved this book. It really paints a picture of the harsh realities of life in Afghanistan. The characters are so well drawn and the story really moves along. It's a really great read!#plumrewards
Date published: 2017-05-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from classic one of my all-time favorite !
Date published: 2017-05-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderful I laughed, I cried, I conquered. I certainly couldn't put it down until I finished, which is a great sign, and wanted to punch certain characters in the face, also a good sign. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-05-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it Wonderful and compelling story.
Date published: 2017-05-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read! One of those books that are written so vividly, that it leaves a pit in your stomach when moments are tense and/or criminal in nature. However, I could not put it down! Definitely worth it :)
Date published: 2017-05-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from powerful and well written story powerful and well written story
Date published: 2017-05-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from powerful and well written story powerful and well written story
Date published: 2017-05-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great I loved it I read it a couple years ago and want to read it again! great story and message
Date published: 2017-05-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING! Was such a great story spanning the decades in Afghanistan and the US. It is definitely worth the read. What I liked most about it was the descriptions of what life was like in Afghanistan before outsiders changed it all.
Date published: 2017-05-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The book that made me love reading.. .. and it is still the best book I have read! Absolutely love this book and I recommend it to anyone and everyone. Do yourself a favor and read it.
Date published: 2017-05-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing!!! This was really good, I am left speechless.
Date published: 2017-04-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from really good this is one of the best books i have read. i was crying 80% of the time i was reading this.
Date published: 2017-04-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heart-wrenching but worth it I bought this book for school but ended up being completely obsessed with knowing how it ended. I ended up crying in the lobby of my workplace as I waited for my ride, and I rarely (if ever) cry over books. This is a difficult book to read. It's painful and it destroys you and you want to wring the lead characters neck more than once. But you learn to love him as you see him grow up and that's the beauty of Hosseini's writing. You despise the characters that are despicable and you love the characters that are just trying their best and the whole time even the smallest detail is enough to get your heart to clench in your chest. The ending was horribly sad in that hopeful way that some avid readers may recognize from lots of horrendously sad books. It's worth it.
Date published: 2017-04-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent! Heartbreaking but a must read!
Date published: 2017-04-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from You need to read this. I read this novel a number of years ago and still it stays with me. I gained much historical information in a way that made me see the worl through a different lens. I think in many ways, this novel is more relevant than when it was first written.
Date published: 2017-04-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from beautifully written I love the way Khaled Hosseini writes. The Kite Runner really makes you feel personally attached to the characters as they are so well developed.
Date published: 2017-04-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a wonderful read! I have recommended this book to many of my friends.
Date published: 2017-04-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Highly Recommend There's a reason this book is a best-seller. It was hard to put down, great story!
Date published: 2017-04-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect. I 100% recommend this to everyone, beautiful tragic story.
Date published: 2017-04-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from beautiful writing Heartbreaking and devasting story...
Date published: 2017-04-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really good book! I actually had to read this book for English class and I ended up really really liking this book!!! It had such a great story and you really feel for the characters
Date published: 2017-03-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book! This book seems to give such a real look into a society that is so foreign to us here in North America. The author develops the characters carefully and intentionally and the way that the plot twists and turns keeps you on your toes. Hosseini touches on friendship, social hierarchy, forgiveness and regret. Heartbreaking, but an incredible book that you won't be able to put down.
Date published: 2017-03-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book! Very good read! Makes you appreciate things.
Date published: 2017-03-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't put it down After reading a few chapters I could not put this book down. It's an amazing story about redemption, love and friendship. I would recommend it to anyone.
Date published: 2017-03-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Liked it An amazing read. best book I have read in a long time.
Date published: 2017-03-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This book is such a good book that really makes you appreciate our life in Canada! Like someone else said, it is life changing
Date published: 2017-03-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking & captivating Hauntingly beautiful - Khaled Hosseini has an amazing way with words. Parts of this book had me weeping like a child. Nearly impossible to put down, I read this book in 2 days - we ordered take-out one night because i couldn't put the book down long enough to cook dinner for my family. Highly recommend this. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking & captivating Hauntingly beautiful - Khaled Hosseini has an amazing way with words. Parts of this book had me weeping like a child. Nearly impossible to put down, I read this book in 2 days - we ordered take-out one night because i couldn't put the book down long enough to cook dinner for my family. Highly recommend this. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Life-changing This book should be read and experienced by all. It has the ability to touch the hearts of so many. It has a deeper meaning to life and one can truly learn the importance of friendship, hardships, love, and pain.
Date published: 2017-03-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from True classic This book will leave you feeling all sorts of things. Beautifully written
Date published: 2017-03-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This book will become a classic I have been hearing about this book for years and I'm not sure exactly why it took me so long to buy and read it, but I am so glad that I finally did. This book gives you such a perspective into the lives of people who don't live the same way as you do and shows you how much we can take for granted in our lives. This book makes you take a step back and think about your own life and the way you have wronged people in the past and the rippling effects it can have forever on somebody's life and even your own.
Date published: 2017-03-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Captivating This novel is so well written! The story of these boys; the way their lives are affected by a hate crime and war, yet the childhood friendship cannot be forgotten, is moving. I read this novel quickly, as everyone else has commented. I haven't read any other novels by Khaled Hosseini but I plan to when I have some time off work to enjoy devouring them whole #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Thoughtful Classic I read this one a few years ago and I have yet to come across a book that has outdone this one. It is truly one of my all-time favourites. It is thought provoking and hits you straight at your core. An incredible example of how decisions can have a rippling effect even years on and how you can't escape the past.
Date published: 2017-03-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartwrenching & Thoughtprovoking We really don't know how good our life is in North America! A very poignant novel that everyone needs to read! There are the 'haves' and the 'have nots' even within North America! This book reminds us that our status quo lies in a very delicate balance which could easily be upset and our lives could be changed forever as happened historically in Afghanistan! Please take the time to read this tragic story and reflect on what life could be like IF North America became fragmented and had warring factions today!
Date published: 2017-03-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from all time favourite A book I have ready many times over, and it continues to be one of my favourites. The book is well written in terrific detail, and the characters stay with you forever.
Date published: 2017-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So good I loved this book that I read in high school
Date published: 2017-03-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! one of the best things i've read!
Date published: 2017-03-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from YESS I loved reading this, was a bit dissapointed that I guessed the end, but it kept me on the edge before that .
Date published: 2017-03-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved! Loved this book from start to finish.
Date published: 2017-02-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a good read I never got to read this in high school, but I picked up a copy at a used book sale. it's only been 3 days and I'm hooked. It took a little bit to get into, but then all of a sudden the story picks up and you can't put it down.
Date published: 2017-02-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible Read I read this novel when I was in grade 12 and loved every minute of it. So well written.
Date published: 2017-02-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from really good story it takes a while to get to the point but, once it does OMG..it drives your emotions
Date published: 2017-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing! I could not put this book down. I literally pulled an all nighter to finish it. I have since read the authors other books and they are all beautifully written.
Date published: 2017-02-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this! An incredible book, and would definitely read again!
Date published: 2017-02-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favourite books of all time I read this in one day, it's that amazing. Such a heartfelt, emotional and heart breaking story that keeps you turning the pages until the wee hours of the morning.
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Definitely a must read! Overall amazing and intense! there are some mature content that has so much meaning to it. Lots of foreshadows and great themes. An amazing book for ISUs or school work. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful This was the first book I had ever read that made me cry. What a touching story. So raw. So much truth to it. So much to learn from it. I absolutely recommend this book.
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic This was an amazing novel. If you have not read it YOU MUST!!!!
Date published: 2017-02-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A must read! Haven't finished it yet but I am captivated by the story, such a soul cultivating novel about friendship, social class gap, betrayal, and redemption.
Date published: 2017-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing. Though the novel was simple enough to read, the story was captivating, heartbreaking, and consuming. Absolutely worth the read. If you enjoy this novel, read "a thousand splendid suns" (also by Hosseini).
Date published: 2017-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Spectacular When you first begin this story, you’ll be surprised by its simplicity. But don’t be fooled; it will quickly pick up the pace and barrel forward. This treasure of a book is a heartbreaking story of two boyhood friends, and how their relationship evolves over the next 40 years. It is extremely difficult to put down this book about friendship, betrayal and redemption that begins just prior to the Russian invasion and moves forward to a war-torn, Taliban-ruled Afghanistan. Don’t miss this one! It is one of the best books I’ve ever had the good fortune to read.
Date published: 2017-02-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from one of my favourite books Loved it, amazing writing, sad and intense story.
Date published: 2017-02-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVE #plumreview Great book! I did it for a novel study and it was a great read.
Date published: 2017-02-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful but will cause you to cry I absolutely adore this book. There is a part that will just break you but overall the story is beautiful
Date published: 2017-02-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing All I can say is amazing. Such a great story of friendship and hardships. Easy to read and hard to put down
Date published: 2017-02-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Emotional A touching story about friendship and conflicts about war.
Date published: 2017-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This is the first book that ever made me cry, and I loved it. The Kite Runner was required reading in my Grade 12 English class, and I was in the story's grips for weeks after finishing it. Until then, I had never read a book that had moved me to tears the way that this one did. At one point, I actually threw the book across the room because I was so angry. Prepare to have your heart ripped out of your chest, but, if you read to the end, it just might soar. This will forever be the book that made me fall in love with reading.
Date published: 2017-02-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Huge fan! A wonderful book, it depicts life in the middle east, the horrible lives some have lived and the prejudiced views. Beautiful book but left me sad and crying in some parts.
Date published: 2017-02-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book! This was a great book. It is a "must read".
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from BEST! #plumreview One of my all time favorite books!
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! It was one of the best Novels that I've ever read!
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved it heartbreaking and beautiful
Date published: 2017-01-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved It! I've read this book at least three times, and it never gets old! Heartbreaking and emotional, but it's worth it.
Date published: 2017-01-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great I read this in school. Really left an impact.
Date published: 2017-01-28

Read from the Book

OneDecember 2001I became what I am today at the age of twelve, on a frigid overcast day in the winter of 1975. I remember the precise moment, crouching behind a crumbling mud wall, peeking into the alley near the frozen creek. That was a long time ago, but it’s wrong what they say about the past, I’ve learned, about how you can bury it. Because the past claws its way out. Looking back now, I realize I have been peeking into that deserted alley for the last twenty-six years.One day last summer, my friend Rahim Khan called from Pakistan. He asked me to come see him. Standing in the kitchen with the receiver to my ear, I knew it wasn’t just Rahim Khan on the line. It was my past of unatoned sins. After I hung up, I went for a walk along Spreckels Lake on the northern edge of Golden Gate Park. The early-afternoon sun sparkled on the water where dozens of miniature boats sailed, propelled by a crisp breeze. Then I glanced up and saw a pair of kites, red with long blue tails, soaring in the sky. They danced high above the trees on the west end of the park, over the windmills, floating side by side like a pair of eyes looking down on San Francisco, the city I now call home. And suddenly Hassan’s voice whispered in my head: For you, a thousand times over. Hassan the harelipped kite runner.I sat on a park bench near a willow tree. I thought about something Rahim Khan said just before he hung up, almost as an afterthought. There is a way to be good again. I looked up at those twin kites. I thought about Hassan. Thought about Baba. Ali. Kabul. I thought of the life I had lived until the winter of 1975 came along and changed everything. And made me what I am today.TwoWhen we were children, Hassan and I used to climb the poplar trees in the driveway of my father’s house and annoy our neighbors by reflecting sunlight into their homes with a shard of mirror. We would sit across from each other on a pair of high branches, our naked feet dangling, our trouser pockets filled with dried mulberries and walnuts. We took turns with the mirror as we ate mulberries, pelted each other with them, giggling, laughing. I can still see Hassan up on that tree, sunlight flickering through the leaves on his almost perfectly round face, a face like a Chinese doll chiselled from hardwood: his flat, broad nose and slanting, narrow eyes like bamboo leaves, eyes that looked, depending on the light, gold, green, even sapphire. I can still see his tiny low-set ears and that pointed stub of a chin, a meaty appendage that looked like it was added as a mere afterthought. And the cleft lip, just left of midline, where the Chinese doll maker’s instrument may have slipped, or perhaps he had simply grown tired and careless.Sometimes, up in those trees, I talked Hassan into firing walnuts with his slingshot at the neighbor’s one-eyed German shepherd. Hassan never wanted to, but if I asked, really asked, he wouldn’t deny me. Hassan never denied me anything. And he was deadly with his slingshot. Hassan’s father, Ali, used to catch us and get mad, or as mad as someone as gentle as Ali could ever get. He would wag his finger and wave us down from the tree. He would take the mirror and tell us what his mother had told him, that the devil shone mirrors too, shone them to distract Muslims during prayer. “And he laughs while he does it,” he always added, scowling at his son.“Yes, Father,” Hassan would mumble, looking down at his feed. But he never told on my. Never told that the mirror, like shooting walnuts at the neighbor’s dog, was always my idea.The poplar trees lined the redbrick driveway, which led to a pair of wrought-iron gates. They in turn opened into an extension of the driveway into my father’s estate. The house sat on the left side of the brick path, the backyard at the end of it.Everyone agreed that my father, my Baba, had built the most beautiful house in the Wazir Akbar Khan district, a new and affluent neighborhood in the northern part of Kabul. Some thought it was the prettiest house in all of Kabul. A broad entryway flanked by rosebushes led to the sprawling house of marble floors and wide windows. Intricate mosaic tiles, handpicked by Baba in Isfahan, covered the floors of the four bathrooms. Gold-stitched tapestries, which Baba had bought in Calcutta, lined the walls; a crystal chandelier hung from the vaulted ceiling.Upstairs was my bedroom, Baba’s room, and his study, also known as “the smoking room,” which perpetually smelled of tobacco and cinnamon. Baba and his friends reclined on black leather chairs there after Ali had served dinner. They stuffed their pipes -- except Baba always called it “fattening the pipe” -- and discussed their favorite three topics: politics, business, soccer. Sometimes I asked Baba if I could sit with them, but Baba would stand in the doorway. “Go on, now,” he’d say. “This is grown-ups’ time. Why don’t you go read one of those books of yours?” He’d close the door, leave me to wonder why it was always grown-ups’ time with him. I’d sit by the door, knees drawn into my chest. Sometimes I sat there for an hour, sometimes two, listening to their laughter, their chatter.The living room downstairs had a curved wall with custom-built cabinets. Inside sat framed family pictures: an old, grainy photo of my grandfather and King Nadir Shah taken in 1931, two years before the king’s assassination; they are standing over a dead deer, dressed in knee-high boots, rifles slung over their shoulders. There was a picture of my parents’ wedding night, Baba dashing in his black suit and my mother a smiling young princess in white. Here was Baba and his best friend and business partner, Rahim Kahn, standing outside our house, neither one smiling -- I am a baby in that photograph and Baba is holding me, looking tired and grim. I’m in his arms, but it’s Rahim Khan’s pinky my fingers are curled around.The curved wall led into the dining room, at the center of which was a mahogany table that could easily sit thirty guests -- and, given my father’s taste for extravagant parties, it did just that almost every week. On the other end of the dining room was a tall marble fireplace, always lit by the orange glow of a fire in the wintertime.A large sliding glass door opened into a semicircular terrace that overlooked two acres of backyard and rows of cherry trees. Baba and Ali had planted a small vegetable garden along the eastern wall: tomatoes, mint, peppers, and a row of corn that never really took. Hassan and I used to call it “the Wall of Ailing Corn.”On the south end of the garden, in the shadows of a loquat tree, was the servants’ home, a modest mud hut where Hassan lived with his father.It was there, in that little shack, that Hassan was born in the winter of 1964, just one year after my mother died giving birth to me.From the Hardcover edition.

Bookclub Guide

1. The novel begins with Amir’s memory of peering down an alley, looking for Hassan who is kite running for him. As Amir peers into the alley, he witnesses a tragedy. The novel ends with Amir kite running for Hassan’s son, Sohrab, as he begins a new life with Amir in America. Why do you think the author chooses to frame the novel with these scenes? Refer to the following passage: “Afghans like to say: Life goes on, unmindful of beginning, end…crisis or catharsis, moving forward like a slow, dusty caravan of kochis [nomads].” How is this significant to the framing of the novel?2. The strong underlying force of this novel is the relationship between Amir and Hassan. Discuss their friendship. Why is Amir afraid to be Hassan’s true friend? Why does Amir constantly test Hassan’s loyalty? Why does he resent Hassan? After the kite running tournament, why does Amir no longer want to be Hassan’s friend?3. Early in Amir and Hassan’s friendship, they often visit a pomegranate tree where they spend hours reading and playing. “One summer day, I used one of Ali’s kitchen knives to carve our names on it: ‘Amir and Hassan, the sultans of Kabul.’ Those words made it formal: the tree was ours.” In a letter to Amir later in the story, Hassan mentions that “the tree hasn’t borne fruit in years.” Discuss the significance of this tree.4. We begin to understand early in the novel that Amir is constantly vying for Baba’s attention and often feels like an outsider in his father’s life, as seen in the following passage: “He’d close the door, leave me to wonder why it was always grown-ups time with him. I’d sit by the door, knees drawn to my chest. Sometimes I sat there for an hour, sometimes two, listening to their laughter, their chatter.” Discuss Amir’s relationship with Baba.5. After Amir wins the kite running tournament, his relationship with Baba undergoes significant change. However, while they form a bond of friendship, Amir is still unhappy. What causes this unhappiness and how has Baba contributed to Amir’s state of mind? Eventually, the relationship between the two returns to the way it was before the tournament, and Amir laments “we actually deceived ourselves into thinking that a toy made of tissue paper, glue, and bamboo could somehow close the chasm between us.” Discuss the significance of this passage.6. As Amir remembers an Afghan celebration in which a sheep must be sacrificed, he talks about seeing the sheep’s eyes moments before its death. “I don’t know why I watch this yearly ritual in our backyard; my nightmares persist long after the bloodstains on the grass have faded. But I always watch, I watch because of that look of acceptance in the animal’s eyes. Absurdly, I imagine the animal understands. I imagine the animal sees that its imminent demise is for a higher purpose.” Why do you think Amir recalls this memory when he witnesses Hassan’s tragedy in the alleyway? Amir recollects the memory again toward the end of the novel when he sees Sohrab in the home of the Taliban. Discuss the image in the context of the novel.7. America acts as a place for Amir to bury his memories and a place for Baba to mourn his. In America, there are “homes that made Baba’s house in Wazir Akbar Khan look like a servant’s hut.” What is ironic about this statement? What is the function of irony in this novel?8. What is the significance of the irony in the first story that Amir writes? After hearing Amir’s story, Hassan asks, “Why did the man kill his wife? In fact, why did he ever have to feel sad to shed tears? Couldn’t he have just smelled an onion?” How is his reaction to the story a metaphor for Amir’s life? How does this story epitomize the difference in character between Hassan and Amir?9. Why is Baba disappointed by Amir’s decision to become a writer? During their argument about his career path, Amir thinks to himself: “I would stand my ground, I decided. I didn’t want to sacrifice for Baba anymore. The last time I had done that, I had damned myself.” What has Amir sacrificed for Baba? How has Amir “damned himself”?10. Compare and contrast the relationships of Soraya and Amir and their fathers. How have their upbringings contributed to these relationships?11. Discuss how the ever-changing politics of Afghanistan affect each of the characters in the novel.12. On Amir’s trip back to Afghanistan, he stays at the home of his driver, Farid. Upon leaving he remarks: “Earlier that morning, when I was certain no one was looking, I did something I had done twenty-six years earlier: I planted a fistful of crumpled money under the mattress.” Why is this moment so important in Amir’s journey?13. Throughout the story, Baba worries because Amir never stands up for himself. When does this change?14. Amir’s confrontation with Assef in Wazir Akar Khan marks an important turning point in the novel. Why does the author have Amir, Assef, and Sohrab all come together in this way? What is this the significance of the scar that Amir develops as a result of the confrontation? Why is it important in Amir’s journey toward forgiveness and acceptance?15. While in the hospital in Peshawar, Amir has a dream in which he sees his father wrestling a bear: “They role over a patch of grass, man and beast…they fall to the ground with a loud thud and Baba is sitting on the bear’s chest, his fingers digging in its snout. He looks up at me, and I see. He’s me. I am wrestling the bear.” Why is this dream so important at this point in the story? What does this dream finally help Amir realize?16. Amir and Hassan have a favorite story. Does the story have the same meaning for both men? Why does Hassan name his son after one of the characters in the story?17. Baba and Amir know that they are very different people. Often it disappoints both of them that Amir is not the son that Baba has hoped for. When Amir finds out that Baba has lied to him about Hassan, he realizes that “as it turned out, Baba and I were more alike than I’d never known.” How does this make Amir feel about his father? How is this both a negative and positive realization?18. When Amir and Baba move to the States their relationship changes, and Amir begins to view his father as a more complex man. Discuss the changes in their relationship. Do you see the changes in Baba as tragic or positive?19. Discuss the difference between Baba and Ali and between Amir and Hassan. Are Baba’s and Amir’s betrayals and similarities in their relationships of their servants (if you consider Baba’s act a betrayal) similar or different? Do you think that such betrayals are inevitable in the master/servant relationship, or do you feel that they are due to flaws in Baba’s and Amir’s characters, or are they the outcome of circumstances and characters?From the Hardcover edition.

From Our Editors

The unforgettable, heartbreaking story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant, The Kite Runner is a beautifully crafted novel set in a country in the process of being destroyed. It is about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption. And it is also about the power of fathers over sons -- their love, their sacrifices, their lies.The first Afghan novel to be written in English, The Kite Runner tells a sweeping story of family, love, and friendship against a backdrop of history that has not been told in fiction before, bringing to mind the large canvasses of the Russian writers of the nineteenth century. But just as it is old-fashioned in its narration, it is contemporary in its subject -- the devastating history of Afghanistan over the past thirty years. As emotionally gripping as it is tender, The Kite Runner is an unusual and powerful debut.

Editorial Reviews

"A wonderful work... This is one of those unforgettable stories that stay with you for years. All the great themes of literature and of life are the fabric of this extraordinary novel: love, honor, guilt, fear redemption...It is so powerful that for a long time everything I read after seemed bland." -- Isabel Allende "Stunning . . . an incisive, perceptive examination of recent Afghan history. . . It is rare that a book is at once so timely and of such high literary quality." -- Publisher's Weekly“In The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini gives us a vivid and engaging story that reminds us how long his people have been struggling to triumph over the forces of violence -- forces that continue to threaten them even today.” -- New York Times“A haunting morality tale.” -- USA Today“His passionate story of betrayal and redemption is framed by Afghanistan’s tragic recent past . . . Rather than settle for a coming-of-age or travails-of-immigrants story, Hosseini has folded them both into this searing spectacle of hard-won personal salvation. All this, and a rich slice of Afghan culture too: irresistible." -- Kirkus Reviews“Like Gone with the Wind, this extraordinary first novel locates the personal struggles of everyday people in the terrible sweep of history.” -- People“To many Western readers, [Afghanistan’s] can be an exhausting and bewildering history. But Hosseini extrudes it into an intimate account of family and friendship, betrayal and salvation that requires no atlas or translation to engage and enlighten us.” -- Washington Post“Hosseini does tenderness and terror, California dream and Kabul nightmare with equal aplomb. . .a ripping yarn and ethical parable.” -- Globe and Mail"A beautiful novel . . . a song in a new key. Hosseini is an exhilaratingly original writer with a gift for irony and a gentle, perceptive heart . . . one of the most lyrical, moving and unexpected novels of the year." -- Denver PostFrom the Hardcover edition.