I wrote this review as a part of my assignment submission at SCMHRD, however, the Director proclaimed that we all plagirised our work and has cancelled the assignment. Well, I wrote it all myself, and it deserves a mention, even if its utility is no more….
“The Kite Runner” by Khalid Hosseini, is a story on human relationships, of friendship, brotherhood, guilt and kindness. The story based in Afghanistan, Pakistan and USA, revolves around the friendship shared between Amir and Hassan. While Amir is a privileged boy, Hassan is the son of a servant in Amir’s house. While Amir is a literate, Hassan is an ignorant but sharp child.
The story starts at the time when Afghanistan was still a monarchy in the 70s, about a time when Kabul was a happy place, when Amir’s father was regarded as Toophan Agha for his bravery and was well respected by people around him for his compassion and goodness. Amir’s struggle with his father’s towering figure, and his inability to stand for himself keep nibbling him from within. With Hassan he is able to discover true happiness, conquer imaginary monsters and share his life like a brother, but there is a big societal divide between them. Amir is a Sunni and Hassan is a Shia, Amir is a Pashtun and Hassan is a Hazara. This divide comes to haunt Ali’s father, and finally haunts Amir all through his life when he fails to protect his ‘Kite Runner’ from the older boys of the locality. While Hassan had dared to challenge the older boys earlier to protect his dear friend Amir, all Amir could do was witness a terrible atrocity being committed on his Hassan.
His guilt at not helping Hassan tortures his conscience, and he tries to distance himself from Hassan, who as an ever faithful friend doesn’t want to let go. Amir’s guilt even makes him plant money under Hassan’s bed so that he could be thrown out of the house, and here’s when Hassan and his father leave. Its also during this phase when communism hits Afghanistan, and Amir has to leave to seek asylum in US.
Life goes on, Amir grows up and marries, his father dies, yet he is not able to forget the past, because the past claws its way out. One fine day, his father’s best friend Rahim Khan calls him, and gives him a chance; to be good again.
The journey home, in a violence torn Afghanistan led by Taliban not only gives Amir a chance to redeem his guilt but also to know some facts about his life which were left untold and hidden.
Written in lucid and simplistic language, this book not only describes human emotions with extreme tenderness but also makes the reader empathic the sufferings people undergo in a once beautiful country called Afghanistan. This novel, expresses the pride and honour of Afghanis, and is sprinkled with stories, customs and traditions of the people, which give a true feel of the place.
Tashakor, Mr Hosseini for writing such a moving tale of love, kindness and friendship, of why sometimes guilt leads to good.