Thursday, April 9, 2009

The kite runner

Just finished Khaled Hosseinis' book 'The Kite Runner' about a boy of privilege growing up in Afganistan in the '70s before the Soviet invasion, the Taleban and the American invasion. His friendship with a servant boy highlights the intractible nature of the class and religious system which has led to the excesses of the Taleban but also gives a brutally honest account of how a societys' rules get handed down and ingrained in the children.
The title comes from the sport of kite fighting where opponents try to cut each others string and the 'runner' searches for the defeated kite and brings it back as a trophy and the author paints a picture of the beautiful city of Kabul brought to ruin by the time of his subsequent return from the USA as an adult.
For most of the book I thought Hosseini was telling his own story and felt a little cheated (why? because truth is stranger than fiction?) when I found out he wasn't but it's a stunning story, well written and worth reading.

2 comments:

Shubhajit said...

Its a good novel though sometimes bit dramatic..Khaleed Hoseeni is marvelous storyteller. I liked the part when kid Amir wrote a story a and Rahim Khan also praised him but Hassan raised something very common doubt about the story..

I recommend to read the second one of Khalid Hosseni 'thousand splendid suns'. It is more tragic but again very gripping..

chook said...

Even though Hassan couldn't read or write. But you don't need education to have intelligence.
I liked the way Hosseini seemed to write with open honesty and it made me squirm to think of some of the things I have hidden over the years.
Thanks, I'll check out 'thousand splendid suns'