Book Reviews

Khaled Hosseini’s Kite Runner: Kulsoom M. Hassni

The Kite Runner is a story of a little boy named Amir who is living in Kabul, Afghanistan with his baba, his servant Ali and Hassan who are Hazaras while Amir belong to Sunni-Muslims. Ali is baba’s close friend who is like a family member in their house. Rahim Khan is also an honest servant to them. Though Amir is fond of his baba yet he is not that much close to him as, usually a son is to his father.

Amir believes that his father hates him because while giving  birth to Amir, his wife lost her life. However, Hassan is the son of Ali and both of them are the servants of the house but Hassan apart form being a servant, is Amir’s friend as well and Amir loves him so much but he is sometimes jealous of him because his father is equally affectionate to Hasan as to Amir. He always praises Hassan and brings whatever he buys for Amir.

Additionally, one day, when Amir and Hassan have participated in Kite Running competition that is going on in the city, suddenly three boys appear Asif, Wali and Kamal. They as being Sunni-Muslims always been harsh to Hassan for being a Hazara and Hazaras are Shia. When after the competition Hassam goes to bring Amir’s favorite blue kite for him, three of the boys on his take advantage of Hassan.

Amir while coming behind Hassam sees all the act in front of him, but he does not react and went silently. When Hassan comes, he pretends that he doesn’t know what happened. Afterwards, Amir becomes guilty of his cowardice that he couldn’t save his friend. Despite these, he has a hatred for Hassan. On his birthday, Baba gifts him an expensive watch. He hides the watch under Hassan’s pillow.

The next morning, he claims that Hassan has stolen his watch. His Father trusts Hassan, so he doesn’t agree and says to check, when they discover the watch, Hassan admits that he has not done it. Later, Ali (Hassan’s father) comes to baba and seeks an apology and moves away with Hassan forever.

Anyhow, when Russia and Afghanistan’s conflict begins, Amir and baba escape Kabul and move to Fremont California, where his father works in a gas station and also finds his old friend general Tahir’s with his daughter Suraya. Amir likes her and speaks to his father for asking General Tahir’s daughter’s hand. General Tahir accepts the proposal. Amir’s baba gets ill and doctors say that he has lung cancer because of excessive smoking. General Tahir arrange Amir and Suraya’s wedding quickly because of Baba’s bad condition. Baba dies after one month of their marriage.

Later, Amir receives a call from Rahim Khan that he is sick and wants to talk to Amir and he ask him to come in Pakistan and meet him. They meet after a week. He tells him all about Kabul devastation and says Kabul is in awful condition and Taliban rule there violently. He wants Amir to do him a favor and tell him about Hassan. He says he convinced him to live in your home with his wife and little boy Sohrab.

When he went Kabul after few a years, a neighbor of Hassan told him that Taliban has killed both Hassan and his wife and, sent Sohrab is sent into an orphanage. After discovering this, Amir gets extremely worried that he has lost a true friend who he betrayed in childhood.

Similarly, Rahim Khan also admits to Amir that Hassan was his father’s son and he was his step brother. He (Rahim Khan) wants Amir to bring Sohrab back in Pakistan where a couple wants to adopt him. Amir agrees and goes to Kabul, and he finds the orphanage but the director of the orphanage says that Sohrab isn’t living here and he harshly tells Amir to leave. Then, Amir discovers that Taliban has taken Sohrab from orphanage.

Nevertheless, he goes to Taliban and ask them about Sohrab and when the head of Taliban entered, Amir was able to recognize him as he was that same boy Assef who raped Hassan in his childhood. The same he does at that time as well, now he sexually abuses the little orphans of Afghanistan. He starts beating Amir and keeps a condition if he wins the battle then he can take Sohrab with him. He beats Amir to death. Sohrab saves Amir by shooting the slingshot in Assef’s eye like his father, and then both escape from there.

Lastly, when Amir comes to Pakistan with Sohrab, he gets to know that Rahim has passed away so he decides to adopt Sohrab and take him to US. For taking Sohrab to US there was a process and the adoption official forbid him and stopped him to take Sohran to US. Sohrab has to live again in a poor orphanage. Amir talked to his wife all about the situation and she becomes very happy to adopt Sohrab because she was told she cannot give birth. After, she talks to a lot of adoption officials and they agree to give Sohrab. Finally, they bring Sohrab to California but he stops speaking entirely.

One day, they take him to a park where many people are running kites. Amir buys a kite for Sohrab and one for himself. He starts flying the kite by using Hassan’s favorite  trick to run a kite. They win the kite running competition and Sohrab smiles and they go home happily.

The writer is a student of school of intensive Teaching Hub, Balochistan