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The Kite Runner

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  2,863,064 ratings  ·  87,976 reviews
1970s Afghanistan: Twelve-year-old Amir is desperate to win the local kite-fighting tournament and his loyal friend Hassan promises to help him. But neither of the boys can foresee what would happen to Hassan that afternoon, an event that is to shatter their lives. After the Russians invade and the family is forced to flee to America, Amir realises that one day he must ret ...more
Paperback, UK Edition, 340 pages
Published 2004 by Bloomsbury Publishing (first published 2003)
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Phil Laurette It depends on the young adult. There are a number of disturbing events including rape, brutal beatings and public executions. These things are uncomfo…moreIt depends on the young adult. There are a number of disturbing events including rape, brutal beatings and public executions. These things are uncomfortable for adults to read and although it is a work of fiction it is written in such a graphic and believable voice that it is hard to separate yourself from the idea that it is based on actual events. You really have to decide for yourself whether your young adult is mature enough to digest such possible realities. I read it myself before allowing my kids to read it and for me my 15 year old could handle it but many could not. Definitely not a "fun" novel to read purely for pleasure.(less)
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Sam In most cultures, family loyalty rests above friendship. Even though Amir did not identify Hassan as his brother, their bond could not have been anyth…moreIn most cultures, family loyalty rests above friendship. Even though Amir did not identify Hassan as his brother, their bond could not have been anything but brotherly. However, Amir didn't know that brotherhood was less about blood and more about how people relate to/treat/defend one another. In short, I think Amir's reaction would have been the same. For one, he only saw Hassan as a servant, not a friend or brother, and treated him like one too. In addition, Amir only wanted people to accept him and give him attention. He already recieved that from Hassan ,because of Hassan's unwavering loyalty, and there was nothing else he needed. Furthermore, he already knew he was not a virtuous person. For example, his treatment of Hassan, when deriding him for his illiteracy, and his use of toys and food instead of apologies to reduce his guilt. Finally, Amir's cowardice was part of his nature. He grew up in spendor and did not know the hardships others had to face. Amir grew up hiding from his problems in imaginary lands and fiction. He had no real grasp of reality so he feared everything. (less)

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Average rating 4.33  · 
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 ·  2,863,064 ratings  ·  87,976 reviews

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Nov 10, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Finished this book about a month ago but it's taken me this long to write a review about it because I have such mixed feelings about it. It was a deeply affecting novel, but mostly not in a good way. I really wanted to like it, but the more I think about what I didn't like about the book, the more it bothers me. I even downgraded this review from two stars to one from the time I started writing it to the time I finished.

Let's start off with the good, shall we? The writing itself was pretty good
Jun 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In 2012, when I was Mathematics teacher at a private high school in Iran, I had an Afghan student in my class. Sometimes, I discussed with my students about literature, and I told them of novels and poem. I found it very strange that my students had no interest in literature and even sometimes looked with hostility to this discussion. Days passed and much time was left to the end of school year. One day I saw Ali, Afghan student, came to me and had a booklet in his hand and I saw in his eyes sev ...more
J.G. Keely
This is the sort of book White America reads to feel worldly. Just like the spate of Native American pop fiction in the late eighties, this is overwhelmingly colonized literature, in that it pretends to reveal some aspect of the 'other' culture, but on closer inspection (aside from the occasional tidbit) it is a thoroughly western story, firmly ensconced in the western tradition.

Even those tidbits Hosseini gives are of such a vague degree that to be impressed by them, one would have to have alm
Nov 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"For you, a thousand times over."

"Children aren't coloring books. You don't get to fill them with your favorite colors."

"...attention shifted to him like sunflowers turning to the sun."

"But even when he wasn't around, he was."

"When you kill a man, you steal a life. You steal a wife's right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone's right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness. There is no act more wretched than stealing."

"...she ha
May 21, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned, poop
Due to the large number of negative comments I've received, including death wishes, I've added the following request:

Please do not take this review (or yourself) too seriously when reading it.

I became what I am today at the age of twenty-nine, on a frigid overcast day in the winter of 2008.

What I am about to tell you about what I became is going to be very shocking. It is going to manipulate your emotions. It may include some random words in my native language for no reason whatsoever. It w
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Kite Runner, 2003, Khaled Hosseini

The Kite Runner is the first novel by Afghan-American author Khaled Hosseini. Published in 2003 by Riverhead Books.

It tells the story of Amir, a young boy from the Wazir Akbar Khan district of Kabul, whose closest friend is Hassan.

The story is set against a backdrop of tumultuous events, from the fall of Afghanistan's monarchy through the Soviet military intervention, the exodus of refugees to Pakistan and the United States, and the rise of the Taliban reg
Tharindu Dissanayake
Sad stories make good books.

"I became what I am today at the age of twelve, on a frigid overcast day in the winter of 1975."

There are two types of books, usually, that makes one feel like there are no words to describe the experience: They are either unbelievably detrimental, or exceptionally (and positively) impactful. Given the overall high rating, it is redundant to tell, to which category does The Kite Runner belong. I don't think there are that many books, especially fiction
Lisa of Troy
Dec 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
WOW! This book was beautiful, exquisite.

This book follows the story of a rich boy named Amir who grows up playing with his buddy Hassan who is the son of his father's servant. This story is one of friendship, betrayal, love, redemption, and family.

There were so many different twists in this book that I never saw coming. It was also so real that I had to Google, "Is The Kite Runner based on a true story?" If you are wondering, no, it is not.

Honestly, this book was so moving and beautiful that I
Emily (Books with Emily Fox)
It's been a while since I've been this frustrated with a main character... ...more
Will Byrnes
This is a wonderful, moving novel set in the Afghanistan of the early 70’s and of today, about a young boy and his friend growing up in Kabul. Amir desperately wants his father’s approval, but Baba is not quick to give it. He is a rich man, brimming with macho vibrancy, while his son is a different sort altogether. Amir is fast friends with Hassan, the son of his father’s servant. They are as close as brothers. But, beset by bullies, an event occurs that changes Amir’s life. There is much death ...more
Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
”When you kill a man, you steal a life. You steal his wife’s right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone’s right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness. There is no act more wretched than stealing.”

I’m going to be honest with you. To read this book was a constant struggle, not because I didn’t like the writing style, not because it was bad and not because it was boring. No, if anything “The Kite Runner” was so hard to read becau
Federico DN
Two little friends, an unspeakable secret, and a quest for redemption.

"Amir" and "Hassan" are two little boys living in the peaceful Afghanistan of 1975, before the russian invasion, and the subsequent civil wars. Amir is the spoiled son of a wealthy and prominent merchant. Hassan is the cleft lipped son of an inferior caste, and a servant in the house they both live in. During their childhood they become fervent competitors in kite fighting tournaments, and unquestionable friends. Until one fat
Caz (littlebookowl)
Oct 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
4.5 stars!

Oh, my heart. This was heartbreaking and beautifully written!
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
‘for you, a thousand times over.’

no words can describe the heaviness i am feeling in my heart right now.

i will never re-read this as it is too emotionally devastating (i genuinely cant remember the last time a book made me cry so much), but i know it is a story that will stay will me for the rest of my life. of that, i have no doubt.

also, john, thanks for recommending this book, but i will be sending you my bill for all the therapy i will need after this.

5 stars
Jan 14, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
i really wanted to like this novel. judging from its thousands of 'five-star reviews' hailing it as the one of the 'best books ever written,' i'm in the minority when i state that this novel, while well-intentioned, just left a little bit of sour taste in my mouth.

my problems with the novel are as follows: first of all the writing itself is so ham-fistened, heavy-handed, distracting and otherwise puzzling that by the midway point, i seriously considered chucking the book against the wall. each
I liked this book a lot. Due to the uncomfortable nature of the story told, I'll probably never read it again, but I'm glad that I did read it once. I saw it as the story of one not very likeable boy growing up in a soon to be war torn region and his eventual struggle for redemption.

I was quite surprised to see how popular some of the negative reviews of this book were and I'd like to comment on a few of the comments they contained.

One condemnatory critic said "This is the sort of book White A
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini ( Berliani M. Nugrahani, Translator) is a 2004 Riverhead Books publication.

Earlier this year I read Moloka'i by Alan Brennert, another book, like this one, written back in 2004. It seemed I was the only person in the world who had not read the book, and once I’d finished reading it, I wondered why it had taken me so long to read it. This got me to thinking about all the books that I’d intended to read, but never got around to. So, despite my strong feelings ab
Dr. Appu Sasidharan
Sep 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites

Evocative, invigorating, heart-wrenching, riveting, realistic, poignant, complex, brilliant, emotional, gripping, intriguing. I can use many more words to describe this book. Still, I will feel that it is not enough.

The story of the extraordinary friendship between Amir and Hassan told against the devastating backdrop of the history of Afghanistan will incontrovertibly move your heart and bring some tears to your eyes. If you are a person who reads only 5-6 books a year, this one should be a
Nilufer Ozmekik
Oct 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
We move backwards to early seventies’ Afghanistan , Kabul to meet with Amir who is a young boy, whose only happiness related with his father’s approval and his best friend Hassan: who is father’s servant’s son!

As monarchy of Afghanistan is under threat by Russian invasion, those boys’ life will never be the same!

This is one of the darkest, most effective, heart wrenching stories you’ve ever read! Sometimes incidents you’ve read are extremely hard to absorb. You want to take a break, closing yo
Henry Avila
Sep 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amir, a little boy growing up in the early 1970's in Kabul the capital of Afghanistan, has the idyllic life a wealthy father Baba, a widower the mother died giving birth to Amir he believes the father hates him for that, in the most beautiful house some say in the city, a great friend Hassan the son of Ali, a servant and loyal to the family. Baba and Ali had been friends too in childhood strange since Hassan's father is just a Hazara (Mongol), Hassan's promiscuous mother had left them to join a ...more
Check out more of my reviews at www.bookaddicthaven.com

'The Kite Runner' had been sitting on my TBR list for years. I kept putting it off because while I was sure that it would be a fantastic book, it isn't the type of smutty romance that I usually read. I knew that I'd have to be in the right kind of mood to read it. Finally, I found myself wanting to read something a little different to break me out of a reading rut and I downloaded the Audible version of 'The Kite Runner' and started listenin
Aug 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“There are a lot of children in Afghanistan, but little childhood.”

I’ve read books before with an unreliable narrator and also read accounts of cowardice and shame. Amir, the first-person protagonist and narrator from Hosseini’s 2003 novel, filled me with such disgust and loathing that I almost put the book down at 25%.

My doctor would say that Amir suffered from AWDD – Ass whooping deficiency disorder and I would enthusiastically second that diagnosis.

That said, I invite everyone to read the boo
La Petite Américaine
After pondering long and hard, I'm going to try now to articulate just what it was about this book that sucked so much, why it has offended me so greatly, and why its popularity has enraged me even more. This book blew so much that I've been inspired to start my own website of book reviews for non-morons. So let us explore why.

First, let's deal with the writer himself. Hosseini's father worked for Western companies while in Afghasnistan. While daddy (who I am guessing, from Hosseini's tragic ac
Jul 24, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book a failure of courage and imagination -- all the more upsetting for the author's astute sense of detail and wonderful psychological depth. But ask yourself this: if the Taliban are real humans than why are they not represented as such? No doubt we will all love the movie as well.

If you want to read a book on Afghanistan, I recommend Jason Elliot's An Unexpected Light.

Below is my complete review:

I started out loving this book. Hosseini is dead on target in his depiction of child
”For you, a thousand times over.”

We are currently experiencing some expressional difficulties.

Should be back in business once emotions are in full functioning mode.

Peter (on semi hiatus and trying to catch up)
The Kite Runner is emotional and immersive, a story that is amplified with its spotlight on society and culture within Afganistan - both past and present. The story relates to the lives of two boys, Amir and Hassan, growing up in Kabul and narrated through the eyes of Amir. There are major societal and lifestyle differences between them but it is the character and principles of the two boys that defines this literary classic. Amir is the son of a rich man, he is educated, refined, and mos
Aug 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own

Before I started this book, I distinctively remember running my hands over the cover, over the embossed letters that read, The Kite Runner, with not a thought spared but just a sense of hope and anticipation.

Now, after I've finished it, I'm once again running my hands over them.
Those letters that read, The Kite Runner.
Those letters that mean a lot more than what they seemed to a few days ago.







This is just a tiny fraction of "Oh"s that I felt during my journey through thi
Jackie Gill
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Reading_ Tamishly
"Tank you wery match."
Sohrab squeezed my soul then and there. I love this kid so much.

I love Hassan too much too. But there's no normal way of talking or writing anything without crying whenever that name comes up. I cannot believe a name can make me cry anytime anywhere now.

But Hassan never asked for sympathy. But my heart ... (Sorry, I just wailed for the umpteenth time while writing this sentence...) is so broken at the moment. I don't think I will ever get healed from this pain and sorrow.

Margaret M - semi hiatus  (With lots of catching up to do)
“I opened my mouth, almost said something. Almost. The rest of my life might have turned out differently if I had. But I didn’t. I just watched. Paralysed”

Five stars for a stunning book where remorse, guilt, injustice, prejudice, and forgiveness play a significant part in the heart-breaking stories of Amir, son of Baba, and Hassan, son of Rahim Aga, a loyal friend and servant to the Amir’s father, set against the backdrop of some of Afghanistan’s most turbulent years.

'The Kite Runner' is an unfo
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Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, in 1965. In 1970 Hosseini and his family moved to Iran where his father worked for the Embassy of Afghanistan in Tehran. In 1973 Hosseini's family returned to Kabul, and Hosseini's youngest brother was born in July of that year.
In 1976, when Hosseini was 11 years old, Hosseini's father obtained a job in Paris, France, and moved the family there. They were u

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