In the soon-to-be war-torn streets of Kabul, a young privileged boy by the name of Amir goes about his life, oblivious of the trials and tribulations to come. His servant, and also best friend, Hassan and he appear to have intertwined fates, which becomes more and more apparent as the novel progresses. As time passes, events occur that threaten the duo's friendship, and set the two down a path filled with crimes, but later redemption. Khaled Hosseine's The Kite Runner warmed me with a story of friendship, heroism, and redemption.
During the childhoods of these children, the two rascals spent much time shining light into their neighbor's house with a mirror, as well as shooting the neighbor's dog with a slingshot. As time progresses, a kite fighting tournament starts up in their neighborhood. They decide to enter, and they win. However, that is merely half the battle. The real winner is the person that runs after the second place kite, retrieves the kite, and keeps it. They have the most honor. Hassan decides to run after the kite after Amir and he cut the string. That choice leads the two of them down paths never before imagined. Paths which would separate them and ultimately bring them back together in the most unexpected way. Paths that will lead one into the truth of who the other really was. Along this path lies war and much suffering, but in the end, redemption and hope.
Hosseini did not just write this book as a method of telling an interesting story. He also did not write this to till about Afghanistan's suffering. Not entirely anyway. Hosseini uses this novel to convey central themes that are necessary for humankind to understand. Among these belongs the theme of guilt leading to the purest form of redemption. Near the beginning of the book, Amir wrongs Hassan in a terrible way. Actually, he does this multiple times. As he grows older, he realizes just what he did, and regrets the fact terrible. He becomes an insomniac, and when he does dream, he has nightmares revolving around that occurrence. Later, Amir gains an opportunity to redeem himself, and save a close relative of Hassan. Along the way, he learns a secret of his father's which could have completely changed his mind about the matter and justified him quiting. However the fact only spurred him on. By doing this action, Amir gains peace from his scarred past, and acts as, "his brother's keeper."
In The Kite Runner, a crudely elegant, touchingly raw, and humbly powerful tale is told. Hosseini pulls no punches so to speak in this novel. At times this book seems repulsive, enfuriating even, and yet engrossing all the same. At other times the book appears uplifting, and then catastrophe strikes and a gloom decends over the reader, for a time anyway. Honestly, this must be a favorite book of mine, and a must-read for pretty much any teenager or adult.