Brylee asked:

Is this a YA book? If not is there anything in it that makes it inappropriate for teens?

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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 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.
Suzanne Gibbs This is pretty intense and has some horrific events in it. I wouldn't recommended it as a YA.
Arielle This is not a YA book. If I had to rate the book, I would give it an 'R' rating for language, violence, adult themes, and very graphic rape and implied rape. I'm sure some young adults would enjoy the book (and it is a beautiful story), but parental discretion is advised.
Montzalee Wittmann One of the main characters, a small boy, is raped. It is violent in the beatings, and executions. I wish I hadn't read it. Disturbing.
Read any book first if you have doubts or just don't give it to them. This is Not a teen book but maybe older. Read first.
Saara I'm 17 and I read this book at age 15. So I don't think it has that much of an impact on a child's psyche. I mean, I wasn't much traumatised after it, other than the fact that this book touched me irrevocably.
Esteryn As people said, it mostly depends on the reader's sensitivity and personal background.

It IS graphic and disturbing but maybe the best thing to raise awareness (and thus prevent teenagers getting abused) and care / respect (between teens and towards victims of abuse) is to talk about these things to teenagers rather than to hide them.

There really should be some talk with young readers though because some elements (child sexual abuse, domestic almost treated like slaves, racism, sexism etc) are very chilling and realistic and it is best to talk about these things in order to fight them. And honestly, though the book is sold as a beautiful friendship, i saw no friendship in this story, on the contrary, i was most shocked by this supposed friend's attitude toward Hassan than by his haters, because well, he trusted his friend. It's more an abusive relationship throughout with just a bit of brightness at the end but imo, it does not make up for all the horror before. And that is something that would deserve to be underlined, that it is not a right way to behave (treat people as inferiors, abuse them and so on as teenagers are often confronted to bullying, either as victims or perpetrators)
Kristen Dastrup No, this is not a YA book. At least it's not something I would want my teenage children reading.
Jorge I read this during my sophomore year of high school as part of my English class. There are some touchy topics but nothing your average teenager wouldn't be familiar with. I think its fine for anyone 13 or above.
Erin With the kind of Movies Youth of that age group watch anyway today, I would say it depends on the teen. Personally, I would prefer my teens to have read this than the 50 Shades collection, or watch the Saw collection... It does have some fairly strong stuff in it but it's not graphic out of context and the effect is one of profound thought. I did recommend it to my girls, who were in the YA age group at the time.
Carole The message about friendship between two young boys is profound and in an abridged version wonderful for a YA to read.
So are topics about the implications of class . It is not a really YA book in my opinion, if you mean 12-15....I'm not sure the important topics will be understood by all YA. It would be a good book to discuss in school with some direction. Probably all older teens could benefit by understanding the topics in this book. But, many issues in the book and movie are disturbing and don't deserve to be just glossed over. If it is used in school, some parents and administrators would object in my experience. However, I think college age is still YA and this book is highly appropriate for them. I think reading this book one might miss some of the intense impact that is very apparent when watching the movie. This is one book that I do think was very successful as a movie. Unfortunately, I don't know anyone who has read the book or seen the movie. I guess that is why I joined Goodreads.
I consider it as a contemporary must read.
But, anyone recommending it to their own YA should read it first.
Neil There is some pretty disturbing content in the book (realistic violence and abuse, including rape of a child). But I'll say that I read the book when I was 16 and I wasn't traumatized or scarred for life or anything like that. The book was actually assigned summer reading in an AP class I took. I definitely remember being disturbed by some of the content in the book, it's heavy stuff, but let's be honest. If you have a 16+ year old they've might have already read about (or seen) equally f***ed up stuff online by this point.
Gavin Abdollahi I'm 15, and my dad had been holding me back from this book until recently. I can definitely see why now.
The book is a horrific eye-opener, graphic and brutally unforgiving, and the fact that its both well-written and at the same time real and true only increases these facts.
Female and, more graphically and commonly, male children are raped by men, varying in age from teenagers to adults. The book revolves around the narrator's guilt of watching his innocent friend held down by two teenagers and violated by another, and doing nothing about it. Thrusting, groaning and clenching buttocks are used to describe the scene. Afterwards, drops of almost black blood fall from the boy's pants.
A member of the taliban buys children of both sexes from an orphanage and sexually abuses them. He brings a boy that he has bought into the room and makes him dance, then stands behind him and does things like rubbing his hand up and down the child's belly and nibbling hos ear while talking to his guest. To make the scene more disturbing, the boy has mascara on and is dressed in certain clothes and has bells attached to him. While this time around, sexual activity isn't described, it's obvious what this boy's purpose is.
There's a public execution via stoning, a body hanging in the middle of town, a golden ball shot into a man's eye by a child. A father wails over his dead son and pops a pistol into his mouth, causing a splash of red. A depressed child cuts his own wrists.
There is also strong language, like f*ck and c*nt and sh*t, as well as brief mebtions to making love.
All in all, this is a mature book, and one that haunts you, at that. Heck, it even made me afraid when I closed my eyes, made me fear that when I opened them the taliban would be there. Be careful when deciding whether or not a teen should read it.
William Wehrmacher I think this book would be perfectly appropriate for teens, especially in our time in history. There is nothing in the book that isn't seen on TV. There are horrible things that happen when a government, in this case ostensibly based on religion, becomes, or begins, 'misguided.' The same sort of thing happened when Hitler became chancellor and later dictator of Germany. That story is taught in our high schools, with perhaps more filtering that I think appropriate.

From a personal standpoint, I think the followup book, "A Thousand Splendid Suns", is every bit as compelling and appropriate.
Jason Fiore I think it depends on the teen.

Because of the graphic nature of some of the incidents in this book, I don't think it's appropriate for elementary and junior high students. If you have *any* doubt about its appropriateness for your child, please read this book before giving it to your child.

This book turns up on many summer reading lists for high school students. I think it's VERY wrong for schools to require incoming freshmen and sophomores (14 / 15 year olds) to read this--even though some 14 and 15 year olds are emotionally mature enough to handle this material.
Bill Callahan Each year, our local high school has all students choose one of four books to read over the summer to discuss in class. This year, one of the books is The Kite Runner. I've read the book myself and would say that though it does deal with adult themes, it is done in such a way that I am not at all worried about my son reading it. Of course I know my son and his reading habits. Other people may not find everything appropriate for their children. Be aware that there themes that include violence, including sexual violence. It is handled in a way which is not exploitative, and which is necessary to the novel, but it may not be appropriate for some children, especially younger ones. I think that a typical fifteen year old can handle it, but you know your child best.
Holly I feel like this book should be read when one is older. Violence aside, the main theme of the book, to me, is how the bonds of our youth remain and even shape our lives and our choices. I'm not sure a teenager would really appreciate it fully, given the simple fact they haven't had the life experience to connect to it. I read this book in my 30's and felt it quite profoundly. It is one of only 2 books in my life that literally made me weep.
Edel AMAZING is all I can say..this book was in my house for years and sadly I never read it sooner ..then a friend gave me a present of it and once I started reading it I was hooked. Just such a beautiful story about the sacrificial nature of friendships and forgiveness..
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RaeofSunshine It's a very good book. I read it for my English class sophomore year of high school I believe. Based on the fact, it was approved by my high school I think it's appropriate for most older teens (15+). It definitely deals with tough topics such as assault however.
Ruri Lots of teens read this for school, even though it isn't Y/A and touches dark themes. I think guidance while reading the book would be appropriate. The story is overwhelming, but I think is a must for everyone as it broadens your mind as regards Afghani cultures and things that are happening again now.
mishel i know this question is old but if people still look up this question, i guess i can answer with my own experience about it. i'm almost 14 and i read this book when i was 13. my mom recommended it to me. keep in mind that my parents don't really want me to read books with explicit scenes in them. this book had descriptions of really hard topics as mentioned above but nothing is too graphic. if you're okay with violence, then you can read it. i don't see why teens shouldn't read it, since we hear all about topics like these, in real life. i also had some great conversations with my mom :)
Z No, this is not a YA book. There is extreme profanity, violence, child rape, beatings, suicide attempts, and executions. So basically, every single thing you do not want your child to read.

It is not appropriate for anyone under 18, and I wish I did not have to read it.
Shreyoshi Chaudhuri Depends on where you come from, and what level of brutality you're used to. It's contains harsh truth and the reality of certain third world and war-stricken countries, and blaming the book will not change the reality. It is graphic, but it has really heart touching scenes and it's one of the classics every teenage above 14 should read. After all, even if it's fiction, it's set upon quite a real background, so brace yourself for some heavy scenes, but don't miss out on such an outstanding book.
Eishma Its not inappropriate for teens but a life changing book that one must read.
This book introduces us to that side of the coin which we usually neglect or fail to understand.It consists of the best childhood memories of two boys but at the very same point it presents to us the most dangerous consequences of their decision which dreadfully change the lives. Therefore it might be a little dark for a young teen but appropriate for a teen of more than 14 years of age.
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Chinecherem I read this book when I was In tenth grade at my school. I think this book is for teens, although it has horrific events in it. I think you should read if you're over 14.
Jeffrey I agree wholeheartedly with Carole's answer. There are teens who could handle and understand this book, but parents must pre-read it and make a careful decision for their own children.
Hafsa i am 14 and i read this book when i was 13 and i just couldnt stop once i started reading it.
Sam Glasbrenner (Sassyowlreads) I also had to read this when I was in AP. Traumatic things happen in the book but I wouldn't deem it inappropriate for a teen by any means. In fact, I think more students should have to read it. My AP teacher liked books that didn't have happy endings and forced us to think about the tragedies that happen daily in the world. This book satisfies both of those qualifications. The ending is happier than I'd anticipated but it is no Cinderella story.
Robyn My sister is currently 15years old and it's her English set book in High School so I'd think it's fine.
Hannah I'm 14 and currently on page 269 (83%) and if I am honest, yes it has been upsetting but nothing that has completely 'broke' me or given me nightmares.
Eleanor Bouley We were assigned to read this for my AP English class. There are some tough things that happen, but I think a lot of teenagers are mature enough to handle the harsh realities discussed in this book.
Amanda Matthews My daughter is in year 9 at school and it is the English novel they are studying at the moment.
SueK I read this book six years ago, and the rape scene in particular stays with me still. It is troubling, at least to someone my age, though it may not be as off-putting to a teenager. I think those who responded "depends on the teen" are correct. It is, in my opinion, one of the most worthwhile books I've read in helping to understand the culture and mindset of the Afghani people, and the ordeals they've endured.
Shishir check epub version of kite runner
Matthew Just thought I should add that I'm studying this for my AS English Literature.
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by Khaled Hosseini (Goodreads Author)
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