This is Khaled Hosseini’s debut novel. The story about the friendship between two boys begins in pre-war Kabul, Afghanistan. Amir was the son of a wealthy man, Hassan was the son of the servant. They were born a year apart. Amir’s mother died giving birth to him, Hassan’s mother abandoned him and his father five days after he was born. Amir and Hassan were nursed by the same woman and grew up together.
Hassan’s love and loyalty to Amir knew no bounds. There was nothing he wouldn’t do for Amir. “For you, a thousand times over”, he said. Hassan’s loyalty was betrayed on one tragic winter day, which led to Hassan’s father deciding to leave Amir’s family home.
When war broke in Afghanistan, Amir and his father fled to Pakistan and later migrated to U.S. Amir graduated from high school, and later, college. He met the love of his live. His father who was then seriously ill, died shortly after he married.
Amir became a successful author and was enjoying the fruits of his success. One day, he received a phone call from Rahim Khan, his late father’s best friend. Rahim Khan was very ill and asked Amir to go to Peshawar to see him. There is a way to be good again, he said to Amir.
Amir made the trip to Peshawar, where Rahim Khan revealed a shattering secret about Amir and Hassan. There is a way to redeem yourself, said Rahim Khan, return to Kabul and safe Sohrab, Hassan’s orphaned son. Given the circumstances, Amir had no choice but to make that trip. Not only to safe Sohrab, but to redeem himself so that he can forgive himself and his father.
I’ve read many, many, many books. There is something about Hosseini’s style that sets him apart from other authors. His books are mesmerizing (an understatement). Even after I finished reading “The Kite Runner“, I couldn’t put it away. I kept re-reading various sections of the book… there is something hypnotizing about his words.