The Kite Runner (10th Anniversary Edition)

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Overview

The 10th anniversary edition of the New York Times bestseller and international classic loved by millions of readers.

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 that is in the process of being destroyed. It is about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption; and an...

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The Kite Runner

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Overview

The 10th anniversary edition of the New York Times bestseller and international classic loved by millions of readers.

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 that is in the process of being destroyed. It is about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption; and an exploration of the power of fathers over sons—their love, their sacrifices, their lies.

A sweeping story of family, love, and friendship told against the devastating backdrop of the history of Afghanistan over the last thirty years, The Kite Runner is an unusual and powerful novel that has become a beloved, one-of-a-kind classic.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Novels about a young Pashtun boy in Kabul and his father's servant's son are not generally expected to become runaway word-of-mouth bestsellers, but Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner did exactly that when it was first published in 2003. The 10th anniversary paperback edition contains a new foreword by the author. If you haven't yet read it; now is the time.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594632181
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 3/26/2013
  • Edition description: 10th Anniversary Edition
  • Sales rank: 139,220
  • Product dimensions: 6.42 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.24 (d)

Meet the Author

With more than ten million copies sold in the United States of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, and more than thirty-eight million copies sold worldwide in more than seventy countries, Khaled Hosseini is one of most widely read and beloved novelists in the entire world. The Kite Runner spent 103 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, and A Thousand Splendid Suns debuted as a #1 New York Times bestseller, remaining in the #1 spot for fifteen weeks, and spending nearly an entire year on the bestseller list. Hosseini is a Goodwill Envoy to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the UN Refugee Agency, and the founder of The Khaled Hosseini Foundation, a nonprofit which provides humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan.

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    1. Hometown:
      Sunnyvale, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      March 4, 1965
    2. Place of Birth:
      Kabul, Afghanistan
    1. Education:
      B.S. in biology, Santa Clara University, 1988; M.D., UC San Diego School of Medicine, 1993
    2. Website:

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2274 )
Rating Distribution

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(1653)

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(129)

2 Star

(29)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 2277 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 25, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    unforgettable....

    The Kite Runner takes place in both Afghanistan and California. It's told from the perspective of Amir, first as a little boy and later on as a man. Amir grows up a privileged boy in Afghanistan. His best friend is Hassan, the son of the family servant. Amir is Pashtun, Hassan is Hazara. Amir is Sunni, Hassan is Shi'a. Their differences don't change the fact that these boys were breastfed together, learned to crawl together and are basically inseparable. Then everything changes. Amir witnesses a horror done to Hassan and cannot forgive himself for not stepping in to help him and to do what is right. In 1975 Afghanistan is in turmoil and Amir, then 12 years old, and his father move to San Francisco. Amir grows up feeling guilt and self-hatred over the issue with Hassan and the subsequent results. Then one day, twenty five years after Amir has left Afghanistan, he receives a phone call summoning him back to the place he had hoped to forget. The caller tells Amir "there is a way to be good again."<BR/><BR/>The Kite Runner has for it's hero a very flawed human being.....but that's what makes him so believable. Amir the boy does a very cowardly, dastardly deed but Amir the man stands up to the Taliban and even more importantly, he stands up for what is right. This book has forgiveness, redemption and courage for it's main themes. We see how strong the ties of friendship and loyalty can become through the eyes of Amir and a broken little Afghan boy. The setting in Kabul and the culture of the Afghan people make for an interesting backdrop to an unforgettable novel.

    86 out of 92 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 16, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Kite Runner

    The story is tragic and heart rending. At some points I really disliked the main character, but I could relate with his frustrations and guilt. He redeemed himself with his bravery in the end. The characters are deep, and the interactions between them are as natural as if the author had witnessed them himself (or, indeed, experienced them!). There is a little bit of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn in the main character and his hair-lipped friend, respectively. I loved how many plot threads from the main character's childhood came back to him in adulthood, which brought back all the main character's childhood anxieties. I have never known a thing about Afghanistan, except what I hear on the news, but this book brought that beautiful, beleaguered country to life for me in ways I never could have imagined. I was transported to and immersed in a world that is totally beyond the awareness of most westerners. Through Hosseini's magic, I became part of that world and literally felt young Amir's and Hassan's every feeling. A superb novel, both historical and relevant for our times. This is a well written novel that's very culturally and politically aware, and it is certainly worth the time.

    29 out of 35 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    Has become my most treasured book.

    I was given this book about two years ago and it sat on my shelf until now, and I cant believe I didnt read it sooner. I cried, I laughed, and feel in to deep thought throughout this whole book. Its beautiful and you will fall in love with the characters right away. Hassan was my favorite character and you will love him too. I cried so much throughout this book because it evoked such feeling inside of me, do yourself a favor and BUY THE BOOK!

    25 out of 29 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2008

    GREAT NOVEL

    This is an amazing novel. I read this book because my cousin recommended it as a good summer read. I did not think that I was going to enjoy it but I was very wrong. This is one of the best novels I have ever read. I have to admit that the beginning seemed slow to me, but after one of its most controversial episodes I was hooked and could not put the book down. This novel was an emotional rollercoaster and surprisingly suspenseful at times. The writing is excellent and allows the reader to get into the mind of the protagonist, Amir, during all of the events he goes through. It is almost as if the reader is feeling the same emotions as Amir. The themes in this novel were very interesting to me. They range from relationships between family members (especially father and son) and loyalty among friends to the horrors war and social problems of the era. This leads me to another aspect that kept me so intrigued with this novel. I learned many new things about the history and culture of Afghanistan and it people. It was shocking to see the problems Afghans faced during the time while Russia had control of the region. In addition it was astounding to see the difference in social class based on the race or different sects of Islam. I knew that Sunni and Shi¿a had problems but I did not know to what extent. It was fascinating to learn so much history and culture but still have a beautiful and inspiring story. The relationships between the characters in this novel are amazing. It is filled with so much emotion that I could not help but to feel for all the characters. Each character has there own story and importance which keeps the reader entertained. When these stories come together is when it really gets appealing. I have to say that my favorite parts were the scenes that show the conditions of war during the Taliban control. Many of the events are filled with suspense during these parts I could not stop reading. This book really is a page-turner and I recommended it highly to all readers in high school and up. One of the most important and influential things I learned about in this book was the power of loyalty and how if someone feels like they have broken that loyalty they will do anything to get it back.

    12 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 18, 2008

    Worst book I think I have ever read

    I do not understand all of the good reviews for this book. The only good part of the book is the historical perspective. The main character is a horrible person. The writer¿s idea of redemption is pathetic in my opinion.

    11 out of 91 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2005

    Unbelievably Moving

    I just finsihed reading this book. I have not stopped crying for an hour. It really moved me!!!!!!!! I lived & traveled in Afghanistan & the Middle east & India from 1976 to 78. The Shah was in power, Indira Gandhi also. When I was there Russia was just starting to invade. I went & watched a buscachi tournament in that fatal stadium. The Afghan people were & still are my favorite people in that part of the world. This book gave me so much more insight that I never new about the Afghan people & their culture & customs. Thank you!!! I am horrified & disheartened as an American that we have not done more for these amazing compassionate, generous people & country. They are truly victoms of this so called 'war on terrorism', Thank you Khaled Hosseini for this book, for the gift of your magnificant words. I am humbled!!!!

    11 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    "For you, a thousand times over."

    The author weaves a stunning portrait of a country torn by war, depicted as once beautiful. His language draws the reader into the novel like a true artist into a painting full of color and truth."The Kite Runner" was one of the most amazing books I have ever read. Every page was a new adventure for Hassan or a new discovery for Amir. The title of my review is the central quote of the book.It represents all Hassan's unwavering loyalty to Amir, which is perhaps the most dangerous part of the story.
    The central themes are some of the most important topics of our time. Themes debated include rich vs. poor/social barriers, right and wrong, life choices, protecting those you love or yourself, admitting wrongdoing, and helping others even though it hurts yourself.I would recommend this book to anyone who has a little time and a lot of appreciation for good literature.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 21, 2013

    This was an absolutely amazing book. One of the best books I've

    This was an absolutely amazing book. One of the best books I've ever read. 

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 28, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Loved it!!!!!!

    If you enjoyed A Thousand Splendid Suns, then you will love this one.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 13, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A beautifully haunting story

    The Kite Runner left me at a loss for words. The story is great. It's totally worth reading. But this is probably the most depressing book I've ever read. Not depressing in a bad way, the story is just emotionally difficult. It is a beautiful and gritty story of a boy's life and the guilt he must overcome. The story has some great plot turns (I even said "holy crap" out loud when I got to them), and is superbly written. Hosseini has written quite a masterpiece-impressive for this being his first novel. This story is filled with horrible things, although not entirely graphic. Hosseini describes horrible acts in such a powerfully impacting manner, but he doesn't resort to gratuitous description to achieve his impact. Hosseini's characters are so deep and well-thought out, that I found myself postulating how these characters lives would have been different had they made different choices. These characters came alive in me, and I suddenly felt as if I was reading a non-fictional account rather than fiction. I wanted their lives to turn our differently, and I wanted Afghanistan to turn out differently. I wish Kabul was spared the Soviets and the Taliban, and that children were still out kite fighting and eating kabob.

    This is a must read. It is an amazingly deep story that deserves plenty of time of thought and discussion. It is a new classic that should be in our future children's high school literature curriculum. Beautifully written, and a beautifully haunting story that will stay with me for a long time.

    Concerning the Illustrated Version: The photographs are a nice addition to the book, but the pictures do not directly correlate to the story (as in "The Da Vinci Code" Illustrated Version). There are sections of photographs, much like a non-fiction book where the pictures are centered in a group. I enjoyed looking at the photographs as they did relate to the story, but I would not miss them if I was reading the regular non-illustrated version. However, the Illustrated Version is a little nicer all around, including a nice jacket and embossed pattern on the hard cover, as well as thick, glossy pages. This is a wonderful gift book or addition to your library if you are a book person like me. But if you'd just as soon toss a book once you're done reading it, then I would stick with the regular mass paperback edition.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2012

    Excellent

    This was an excellent and fast read. I wished I had read it sooner. This book kept me intrigued and interested. Most important it kept me out of the fridge and my TV stayed off. Who needs cable vision when we have Khaled Hosseini to entertain us. Thank you Dr. Hosseini.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 3, 2010

    Important read.

    I read this book then saw the movie and i remember more from the book. It wasnt too graphic and taught me history and culture about another part of the world.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 2, 2010

    The Kite Runner

    The Kite Runner is a fiction novel written by "Khaled Hosseini". It mainly takes place in Afghanistan which is where Amir grew up and where the Kite fighting competition takes place in the 1970's. This story is about the journey of Amir's life from when he as a little twelve year old boy to becoming a grown man in his 30's.
    When Amir was born, his mother had died after she gave birth to him, which caused a lot of pain to Baba, Amir's father. Amir loved his father very much, but thought that his father didn't love him back because he was the reason his mother had died. Amir had a best friend and his name was Hassan. Hassan was the son of Amir's father's best friend Ali, Hassan and Ali were also Amir's and his father's servants. When Amir was a young boy, he always wanted to be the last one standing in the Kite fighting competition so he would be known is great ways by his father and his community. Amir end's up winning the Kite fighting competition just as he hoped; Hassan tells Amir that he would go get the Kite that Amir cut to show his victory. Amir went looking for Hassan and found him in a dark ally, but soon realize that he was not alone. Hassan was being held down by Wali and Kamal while being raped by Assef. These three boys always made trouble with Hassan and Amir and Hassan would always be the one to defend the both of them.
    Amir decided to pretend he never saw or knew that Hassan was raped. During Amir's thirteenth birthday, one of Baba's closest friends Rahim Khan walked up to Amir and asked him if he knew anything about Hassan's being so quiet and sad looking lately; even though Rahim Khan already knew. Amir said he had no clue just like he was planning to do. Later on Amir is felling so guilty by then and decides that it's time for Hassan to leave. Amir left money and his watch that he got for his birthday under Hassan's bed and told Baba that Hassan had stolen it from him. Even though Hassan knew he didn't do it he still says he did; Ali and Hassan decide to move away and out of Baba's house.
    Years later Baba and Amir leave Kabul because of the war that's going on and decide to move to America. It took about two years for them to finally reach Fremont, California where they have decided to live. Amir finished the rest of his high school years in Fremont when he was 20 years old, and enrolled in college to become a writer. Amir met the love of his life when he and his father were at a flea market; the girl name was Soraya who ended up being the daughter of one of Baba's old friends from Kabul. Not to long after Amir and Soraya had been talking, Baba was diagnosed with lung cancer. Amir then told his father that he want to ask Soraya's father for her hand in marriage. Baba talked with Soraya's father, General Taheri who agreed and let Amir marry his daughter. After the wedding about a month later Baba had died from the cancer. Amir and Soraya had decided that they wanted to start a family; they tried for years but they couldn't get pregnant. Amir was still continuing his writing career and ended up becoming a famous fiction writer.
    After a few years, Amir gets a phone call from an old friend Rahim Khan and hears the news that he is very sick and Rahim wants Amir to come and visit him. Amir arrives at the house Rahim is living at and is told how a lot has changed since after the war and the Soviets were kicked out by the Taliban. Rahim also had a letter for Amir from Hassan that was written six months earlier; and Amir

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2010

    Thoughtful and Touching!

    I recently read The Kite Runner, a novel by Khaled Hosseini, and was blown away by the images he could paint in my mind, his thoughtfulness, and his ability to show a country that has been relentlessly criticized and slandered from a different perspective.
    Afghanistan really came to life for me in this novel. Events and situations were so detailed and precise that I found myself able to picture the scene in my mind down to the style of sunglasses the Taliban member was wearing. Paragraphs that were meant to haunt me, haunted me. Sections that were meant to shock me, shocked me. Khaled Hosseini did an excellent job getting his points across. In all the best books, the readers feel pain when the characters are in pain, feel relief when the characters are relieved. I cried, laughed, sighed, and smiled countless times throughout this novel.
    I was extremely impressed by how concise the novel was. I could tell that Khaled Hosseini thought about every word he typed out. Every page, paragraph and word was carefully thought out and had an important meaning to it. Nothing was ever there just to take space. I never got bored while reading, because every part of the novel there were barely any wordy and unnecessary sections.
    Before reading this book, the only thing I new about Afghanistan was that it had crazy terrorists who wanted to destroy America. I never realized how much the country as a whole was suffering. The Kite Runner talked about Afghanistan through native eyes, and I was able to look at each situation from a different perspective. For example, I used to think that Afghans respected the Taliban. From this novel, I realized that they obey out of fear, not out of respect. This made me able to empathize more with them instead of blaming them for events that happened because of their rulers. Why is there always a prosecution AND a defense in a trial? There are always two sides to every situation. The Kite Runner tells Afghanistan's side of the story when no one else dared to.
    The Kite Runner will scare you, shock you, and haunt you. It will bring both tears of joy and tears of sorrow to your eyes. More than that, it will show you a different facet of the situation we've been hearing about for years. It will allow you to take a look from inside the war zone. It will harshly knock you to the ground with its gritty realities and then carefully help you back up again with its story of love, redemption, and compassion.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2008

    I'll have to agree with Ella

    I am an avid reader. This book was recommended to me as ' the best book you can ever read.' I am in shock by the multitude of amazing reviews. This book was so disturbing to me that I had trouble even finishing it. There was nothing positive or enlightening about it. I will never forget it. If that is what the author wants to create, then the picture will stick in my mind, but it was extremely disturbing to me. Society must thrive on reading gloom and doom. My mom, who loves to read, could not even read it, she thought it was so disturbing. You couldn't pay me enough to go to sit through the movie. This book sits on my shelf along with all of my other books, but somehow it is haunting. I will give it to anyone who wants it, just to get rid of it from my sight.

    3 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2013

    Very good book!

    The Kite Runner is such touching book that can rarely be found in literature

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2013

    The Kite Runner is about an Afghani boy Amir and his family

    The Kite Runner is about an Afghani boy Amir and his family servant's son Hassan. They were raised together and were best of friends throughout their childhood. The main conflict of the novel is an internal conflict, man vs. himself. One day after a kite tournament, Amir witnesses a horrendous action done to his friend while he does nothing to try and stop it. This regret lives with him as he grows up to a man. About 20 years after he and his father moved to America, Amir receives a phone call from an old family friend. He tells him there is a way that he can right his wrong doing, so he decides to accept the offer and travels back to Afghanistan for his mission. Here, he puts himself in grave danger to save a young boy who has had a rough life and help him to a better place.
    What I like about this book is that for once, the main character isn't a flawless being that doesn't make mistakes. In this book, it's more lifelike and something you can relate to, which causes it to hook you. Also, I liked how Amir went from a coward and fearful, to courageous and more loving, which is an interesting twist in the story. Also, the style of writing makes it feel like you are there with them when all of it is happening. You get to know the characters so well that you can almost predict what will happen next. I think that's what makes a great book. I would highly recommend this book to anyone no matter what taste in books you have. I guarantee you will be moved in many parts of the novel. Also, it teaches a lot about their culture. It's truly an unforgettable book and will be in the back of your mind.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2013

    At the beginning of the story, Baba is Amir¿s dad. Amir¿s best f

    At the beginning of the story, Baba is Amir’s dad. Amir’s best friend and servant is Hassan, who is accompanied by his father. When Amir and his father Baba move into the United States, Amir meets his soon to be wife Soraya, and her parents, General Taheri and Khali Jala. The main conflict of this story is the character vs. his sins against Hassan, who he let get raped by older Afghan boys for getting the kite during the tournament. The first main plot event was when Amir and Hassan won the kite tournament but Hassan had to go get the kite to ensure their win, after Hassan gets it, Assef rapes him. Amir sees this, but doesn’t do anything, which pretty much ruins his life because of the guilt. One of the main plot events are Amir getting Hassan’s son Sohrab, Amir is kicked in the stomach by one of Assef’s accomplices, both of them are a part of the Taliban. Amir is only able to leave with Sohrab if he can leave alive with a beating from Assef with brass knuckles on. During the beating, Sohrab pulls out his slingshot and hits Assef in the eye, allowing them to leave.
    One of the main things I liked about this book is the reality of it. Most other stories have issues, but towards the end everything is fixed without too much suffering. In this book, Amir is doing right, but along the way he faces a lot of strife and physical suffering. Another is the fact that it is set in recent times, the 1970s. Not a lot of wars went on in that time, and it was about an overlooked war so we can see what civilians thought of. The third reason is when Afghans moved to America, they had opinions about American people. In this book we can see their opinions of the American people.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2013

    The main characters in The Kite Runner are Amir and Baba. Other

    The main characters in The Kite Runner are Amir and Baba. Other important characters are Soraya, Sohrab, Hassan, Rahim Khan, and Assef. Amir is the son to Baba and Amir, during his childhood, always wanted to please Baba but he always found it hard to do so. Baba is a very tall and stocky man and he is the type of person that makes himself known to everyone he meets. Soraya is Amir’s wife and she is a very nice woman and Sohrab is Amir’s nephew. Hassan is Amir’s brother and Rahim Khan is Hassan’s “dad”. The main conflict in this book is an internal conflict for Amir but there are some external conflicts as well. The two main internal conflicts for Amir are that he always wants Baba to be proud of him but it was hard for him to please his father. The other internal conflict is that during the book Amir finds out that his whole life was a lie and he cannot believe that he was lied to his whole life. The external conflict is that Amir and his father are trying to escape to America because in their hometown in Kabul, there is a war going on and they want to escape from it. Two events happened that gave rise to the rising action. One event is when Amir finds out the truth about his life and who was his brother actually is. Another event is when Amir finally is able to please his father by accomplishing two events that makes his father proud.
    What I liked about this book is that Amir and his best friend Hassan always stick up for each other. For example, Assef is trying to bully Amir but Hassan pulls out his slingshot and this makes Assef step back. I also like when Amir gets older, he has to save Sohrab from Assef and Assef only will give Sohrab back to him if they fight. While they are fighting Sohrab pulls out his slingshot, hits Assef right in the eye, the pebble gets stuck in Assef’s eye and they are able to escape. One thing that I did not like about the book was that Amir’s childhood was a lie and he never knew the truth until he got older. I would recommend this book to people because it is an awesome book and its plot development is incredible and it seems like it can be a true story.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2013

    The Kite Runner By Khaled Hosseini is one of the most well-writt

    The Kite Runner By Khaled Hosseini is one of the most well-written books I have read. It has a powerful story with details so realistic it makes you feel there, which most of the time isn’t a very good place. This story about a boy aging into manhood in the most gruesome of places until being able to escape. Afghanistan is painted as one of the worst places to be. 
    Khaled Hosseini writes about a boy named Amir living in Afghanistan during the change into a democracy then the invasions by the Soviets. Him and his father must escape and do so, but Amir must go back when he is an adult to visit a dying friend and sees what his homeland had become.
    This book had outstanding visual details and supreme storytelling, along with a haunting plot that makes this book so good. The details show just how bad some things in life can be. The book has many emotional themes that make it hard to push through. The horrible things some human beings can do is conveyed by the author well in The Kite Runner. Some things in the book could be drawn out. It could have been brought along smoother.
    Most of the other reviews I agree with. The book is widely thought to be well wrote. The Kite Runner was a fantastic book. The story, details and riveting meaning come together to make a great novel.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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