Often in our lives we commit mistakes that leave us in overwhelming guilt. In absence of a suiting redemption, we end up living our lives under the burden of this guilt. Khaled Hosseini’s debut novel ‘The Kite Runner’ is about how this guilt and later a desperate attempt at redemption drives the life of Amir.
With Afghanistan in turmoil as the background, it is a story of friendship and betrayal. Hassan, a lower class Afghan, is Amir’s father’s servant and best friend of Amir. Amir is the son of a wealthy upper class Aghan. They share many relationships: Master-Servant, Friends and later as discovered half brothers. Hosseini touches on many angles in his book with the main theme of guilt and redemption.
The story builds on an event in which Amir leaves behind Hassan in time of need and loses his friendship forever. What he earns in return is the burden of guilt. There are some unnecessary parts of the story like Amir’s love life and wedding which could have been done away with.
However, the reason why this book should be read is because it gives a glimpse into the culture, social conditions and language (to some extent) of Afghanistan before it was taken over by Taliban. It’s quite refreshing to read about this aspect of Afghanistan.
The book has been also adapted into a movie with the same name and was released in 2007.
Highly recommended. A must read.