I came to this book with no pre-conceptions, but I have to say I ended up disappointed.
First the positives: the language and style of the writing are solid. The author does a very good job of reading his own work, which is rare in this industry. The novel feels authentic. It is a touching subject matter.
But my opinion of the book dropped sharply the more I heard, mostly for one reason. The plot is so predictable that it had me rolling my eyes at some points. I feel obligated not to list them here as they might spoil other readers, but there are very many heavy-handed plot devices in this book. Nearly every major plot point was heavily foreshadowed, and the level of coincidence caused me to actually laugh out loud at some inappropriate points. It's hard to feel much suspense when you know the author is taking a safe path all the time.
It will be interesting to see how this translates into movie form, where I expect many others will notice that the plot falls down once the prose is stripped away.
This book provides a totally new perspective on the culture and character of the Afghan people. Not all Afghans are Taliban or terrorists. The author tells a well written and spellbinding story that is hard to put down. The occupation by the Russians, the terror of the Taliban raids, and the bombing of their country highlights the hardship that the real people of this country have endured. I cannot say it erased all prejudice, but the characters in this book touched my heart.
This was a little slow at the beginning, but it picked up & I really liked it. It was interesting to hear what Afghanistan was like before the Russian invasion & to get a a glimpse of what it was like under the Taliban. I liked the way the author didn't make the ending all sugar and spice, but kept it real.
Joseph Campbell said that there is but one real story: the hero's journey. "The Kite Runner's" protagonist Amir makes for a most unlikely hero. He is neither physically strong nor capable of the great deeds for which his towering father is known. But this is every man's story: loss, redemption and renewal. To hear the author read his own words was a privilege and brought life to the spoken word. 11 hours is a long running time, but in Hosseini's hands time flies and I enjoyed every moment of it. I highly recommend this title to those who know that there is a little bit of hero in all of us.
I spend most of my time travelling and fill the long spaces between destinations with audio books. Others have written more comprehensive reviews, so I will keep it brief and say that this book filled the time completely. Wonderful story, well told and totaly engaging.
The Kite Runner touches on relationships with our families that reaches across cultures and religions. It also gives greater insight to what Afganistan was once like and how greed and war change everyones life that it touches. It also shows the ruthlessness of the Taliban and gave me a greater understanding of what the US is dealing with in the Mid-east.
This is an amazing book on growing up and realizing how mistakes can have a domino effect.
I went to sleep at night listening to this book. I did not want to put it down.