- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 12 hours and 6 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
- Audible.com Release Date: August 1, 2003
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0000BZ2U8
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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The Kite Runner Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
And now it brings "The Kite Runner," a beautiful novel by Afghan-American Khaled Hosseini that ranks among the best-written and provocative stories of the year so far.
Hosseini's first novel -- and the first Afghan novel to be written originally in English -- "The Kite Runner" tells a heartbreaking story of the unlikely friendship between Amir, the son of a wealthy Afghan businessman, and Hassan, the son of his father's servant. Amir is Sunni; Hassan is Shi'a. One is born to a privileged class; the other to a loathed minority. One to a father of enormous presence; the other to a crippled man. One is a voracious reader; the other illiterate.
The poor Hassan is born with a hare lip, but Amir's gaps are better hidden, deep inside.
Yet Amir and Hassan live and play together, not simply as friends, but as brothers without mothers. Their intimate story traces across the expansive canvas of history, 40 years in Afghanistan's tragic evolution, like a kite under a gathering storm. The reader is blown from the last days of Kabul's monarchy -- salad days in which the boys lives' are occupied with school, welcome snows, American cowboy movies and neighborhood bullies -- into the atrocities of the Taliban, which turned the boys' green playing fields red with blood.
This unusually eloquent story is also about the fragile relationship fathers and sons, humans and their gods, men and their countries. Loyalty and blood are the ties that bind their stories into one of the most lyrical, moving and unexpected books of this year.
Hosseini's title refers to a traditional tournament for Afghan children in which kite-flyers compete by slicing through the strings of their opponents with their own razor-sharp, glass-encrusted strings. To be the child who wins the tournament by downing all the other kites -- and to be the "runner" who chases down the last losing kite as it flutters to earth -- is the greatest honor of all.
And in that metaphor of flyer and runner, Hosseini's story soars.
And fear not, gentle reader. This isn't a "foreign" book. Unlike Boris Pasternak's "Dr. Zhivago," Hosseini's narrative resonates with familiar rhythms and accessible ideas, all in prose that equals or exceeds the typical American story form. While exotic Afghan customs and Farsi words pop up occasionally, they are so well-defined for the reader that the book is enlightening and fascinating, not at all tedious.
Nor is it a dialectic on Islam. Amir's beloved father, Baba, is the son of a wise judge who enjoys his whiskey, television, and the perks of capitalism. A moderate in heart and mind, Hosseini has little good to say about Islamic extremism.
"The Kite Runner" is a song in a new key. Hosseini is an exhilaratingly original writer with a gift for irony and a gentle, perceptive heart. His canvas might be a place and time Americans are only beginning to understand, but he paints his art on the page, where it is intimate and poignant.
The Kite Runner is a book based on two young boys who lived together but were never close to each other due to their social status.
Storyline: Amir, the son of a rich man in Kabul, Afghanistan is befriended by Hassan, a boy who is born to a low caste Hazara. Hassan, though is the servant’s kid, is allowed to play, dine and assist Amir in his daily routine. The innocent loyalty of Hassan towards Amir is so high that Amir’s father treats him as his second son and never treated him like a servant. But Amir doesn’t replicate the same to Hassan many times, particularly one day when Hassan was attacked by a group of anti-Hazara boys from the neighbourhood, when Hassan runs to fetch the kite struck and won by Amir in the famous Kite Festival of Kabul. This guilt of betrayal makes Amir to distance himself from Hassan though the later never minded it. This leads to Hassan leaving Amir’s home forever. Amir and his father later migrate to America after Afghanistan was taken over by the Russians. Hassan is forgotten by Amir in due course. After some years, Amir gets married in America and decides to visit Afghanistan followed by a phone call by his uncle Rahim. There he comes to know of his life secret that Hassan is non other than his half brother born to his father and the servant maid. Hassan dies in a Taliban attack trying to protect Amir’s house in Kabul a little earlier and is survived by his son, Sohrab. This child of Hassan is abducted by the Talibs from an orphanage and sexually abused. Amir takes the responsibility of rescuing Sohrab from the Talibs and adopts him, as a remorse to all his sins of betraying his father. Moreover Amir himself is childless. But the emotionally insecure Sohrab will not be able to gel into the new family as he misses his parents and freedom. After Afghanistan is freed from the Talibs, Amir and his family re-visits his homeland to do some charity activities. During one such activity, Sohrab takes interest in flying a kite and Amir flies the kite for him just like the way Sohrab’s father used to do for Amir. The story ends with Amir cutting the opponent’s kite and running for the severed kite just like the way his brother Hassan, used to do for him.
Pros: A great emotional story of live of two happy kids from different social strata, transformed into a tragedy for no fault of theirs. A story which shows how millions of lives have tragic endings due to an unexpected turmoil in the form of constant war, killings of the innocents and suffering of the survivors. Lucky were the one who were dead and dilapidated were the lives of the left behind. A highly emotional writing with apt usage of classic prose that will leave no reader tearless while reading this book. I would recommend this book to every reader to know how some lives end up in tragedy simply for no fault of theirs. I appreciate the author’s talent in highlighting the Afghan culture and tradition in the most desirable way.
Cons: Child abuse was the point I hated to read in this book. Though this was the most disturbing fact of the day and ever growing menace in today’s world, I could not stand the way Hassan and his son were abused sexually by the upper caste during their childhood days. How can one do it to a kid? Disgusting!!! No wonder such kids will grow with extremist ideas and replicate the same after they grow up, inculcating the mindset of violence in their behavior..
My rating is 4.25 out of 5