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Summary

Taking us from Afghanistan in the final days of its monarchy to the present, The Kite Runner is the unforgettable and beautifully told story of the friendship between two boys growing up in Kabul. Raised in the same household and sharing the same wet nurse, Amir and Hassan grow up in different worlds: Amir is the son of a prominent and wealthy man; Hassan, as the son of Amir's father's servant, is a Hazara - a shunned ethnic minority. Their intertwined lives, and their fates, reflect the eventual tragedy of the world around them. When Amir and his father flee the country for a new life in California, Amir thinks that he has escaped his past. And yet he cannot leave the memory of Hassan behind him.

The Kite Runner is a novel about friendship, betrayal, and the price of loyalty. It is about the bonds between fathers and sons, and the power of fathers over sons - their love, their sacrifices, and their lies. Written against a backdrop of history that has not been told in fiction before, The Kite Runner describes the rich culture and beauty of a land in the process of being destroyed. But through the devastation, Khaled Hosseini offers hope for redemption.

©2003 Khaled Hosseini (P)2003 Simon and Schuster Inc. All Rights Reserved. AUDIOWORKS is an imprint of Simon and Schuster Audio Division, Simon and Schuster Inc.

Critic reviews

Alex Award Winner, 2004

"A beautiful novel...ranks among the best-written and most provocative stories of the year." (The Denver Post)
"Powerful first novel...tells a story of fierce cruelty and fierce yet redeeming love." (The New York Times)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant

I didn’t expect to but I thoroughly enjoyed this. I found it a little tough to remember the names early on but once I had some blocks of time then I really got to grips with it. I really enjoyed the full circle. Well worth a listen.

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fantastic, captivating

I have also read the book, unfortunately there were some bits missing. The major scene at the end of the 1st chapter is told in significantly less detail to give an example!

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Captivating and heart wrenching

Hearing the author tell the story moved my heart even more. I don't think I've ever been so transfixed by a novel before. I listened to Kite Runner during my morning run and it was the perfect companion.

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Gripping and moving storyline!

Better than I expected. The storyline is intense yet moving at the same time!

Highly recommended, well worth a listen.

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Very enjoyable and poignant.

I found it enlightening listening to this story based in the Afghan culture. It is both moving and compelling.

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  • Robin Johnson
  • 15-02-13

Loved it!

Would you listen to The Kite Runner again? Why?

I would definitely listen to this story again. It was a poignant and honest tale of how our jealousies and fears cause us to do things we are ashamed of but that we sometimes get the chance for redemption. I loved the book and highly recommend it and A Thousand Splendid Suns.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Eric J. Toll
  • 10-12-08

Wow

Prior to this book, I was not a fan of audio books. I never believed that someone reading a book to me would be worthwhile. This audio changed my view. I was going on a long drive, and a colleague suggested trying Audible. The Kite Runner was the first book I downloaded. It kept me enthralled for the entire trip. It is well read, the character voices are consistent and appropriate. I would highly recommend this audio version of the book. It is better than the movie.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 18-04-09

Kite Runner

A cultural must read. I first read "A Thousand Splendid Suns", though it was the author second book, the order does not matter.
Both books brought tears to my eyes, and sympathy to my heart.
Wonderfully written and wonderfully read.
Your heart will break for the poor, simple, innocent people of Afghanistan that have nothing to do with their countries politics or hatred of the west. They struggle each day to fight for the basic human rights we so take for granted. A roof overhead, food and education for their young. You will feel shame for the things we take everyday for granted.
A brilliant author. I couldn't recommend it enough!

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • E. Covington
  • 17-08-07

One of the best books I listened to all year

Excellent book, well written and engaging. Some grime moments but worth every minute.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Kerry
  • 03-08-08

The Kite Runner

– this book was recommended to me I don’t think I would have chosen to read this with out guidance. Having just seen the film though…..wow the reading effects are so much better. Never getting anything that is current due to going to the library and selecting talking books up until I joined, meant I never knew how a book could be better than a movie. I think had I not read the book I definitely would have wanted my money back if I went to watch it on the big screen. I love having the book read to me. I think though that by reading the book you have expectations of how a movie would be shot. I remember thinking while listening I wonder how they depicted this in the movie? That’s easy – they didn’t! Or briefly and weakly. I think the message was of good intent but the story was just above average.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mark
  • 30-07-08

Fantastic

What a fantastic story. It brought me close to tears a few times. For a grown man to be brought to tears while driving his car has got to tell you how powerful this book is. Author does a great job of narrating.

Starts off a little slow and is hard to keep up with unusual character names but stick with it. Recommended.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Jon
  • 21-05-07

Great Choice

This kept me wondering and kept me interested all the way through. Great book w/ unique perspective on Afghan life. Thumbs up!!!

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Lola522
  • 06-07-18

A story of the haves and have nots

Khaled Hosseini weaves a tale of two lifelong friends. There's love, betrayal, lies, deceit, and restoration in this story from the streets of Kabul and across the ocean to California. That's all I'm going to divulge.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kirk
  • 21-09-18

Dark with heart-heavy emotions, but masterful

Dark with heart-heavy emotions, but masterfully written with naked humility. Great read, but brace yourself...

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-07-18

Beautiful, captivating!!

Khaled Hosseini read it perfectly. I loved every second. I HIGHLY recommend The Kite Runner.

Thank you, thank you Khaled!!!