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The Kite Runner Audiobook

The Kite Runner

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: We've learned the hard way that authors don't always make great narrators, but Khaled Hosseini is remarkably gifted in both roles. I have listened to the The Kite Runner again and again to be transported to Hosseini's Afghanistan and can appreciate it all the more because of his authentic pronunciations. —Diana Dapito

Publisher's Summary

Taking us from Afghanistan in the final days of its monarchy to the present, The Kite Runner is the unforgettable and beautifully told story of the friendship between two boys growing up in Kabul. Raised in the same household and sharing the same wet nurse, Amir and Hassan grow up in different worlds: Amir is the son of a prominent and wealthy man, while Hassan, the son of Amir's father's servant, is a Hazara - a shunned ethnic minority. Their intertwined lives, and their fates, reflect the eventual tragedy of the world around them. When Amir and his father flee the country for a new life in California, Amir thinks that he has escaped his past. And yet he cannot leave the memory of Hassan behind him.

The Kite Runner is a novel about friendship and betrayal, and about the price of loyalty. It is about the bonds between fathers and sons, and the power of fathers over sons - their love, their sacrifices, and their lies. Written against a backdrop of history that has not been told in fiction before, The Kite Runner describes the rich culture and beauty of a land in the process of being destroyed. But through the devastation, Khaled Hosseini offers hope for redemption.

©2003 Khaled Hosseini; (P)2003 Simon & Schuster Inc. All Rights Reserved. AUDIOWORKS. is an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division. Simon & Schuster Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • Alex Award Winner, 2004

"A beautiful novel...ranks among the best-written and most provocative stories of the year." (The Denver Post)
"Powerful first novel...tells a story of fierce cruelty and fierce yet redeeming love." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (9106 )
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4.6 (4193 )
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4.5 (4157 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Thomas Plano, TX, USA 08-15-05
    Thomas Plano, TX, USA 08-15-05 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
    127
    ratings
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    112
    12
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    "Should be Award Winning"

    If their was an award for books written and read by the author, this book should win. Truly a classic. I believe it will live on beyond the current year. It reveals so much of people and how they all have similar hopes and dreams. It makes a case for what the US is doing in the middle east and at the same time reveals the issues as internal to the countries there. I never would have guessed I would like this book. I was asked to read it by a friend. The audio version is a true delight. The author gives us the correct pronunciations which I could never have gotten from reading the book. The author gives us the true passion that existed in the charaters of his mind. Be prepared to feel strong emotion with this book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alison New Hope, PA, USA 08-11-05
    Alison New Hope, PA, USA 08-11-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    185
    ratings
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    20
    19
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    Overall
    "Riveting and well-read"

    This is a riveting novel, with wonderful characters who really come to life as the story unfolds. It also deals with the troubles and horrors of Afghan history since the 1960s. The reading is done by the author himself, a real advantage here because his passion for the material is clear and he gives authentic pronunciations to the Afghan words in the story.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ace46 Winnipeg, Canada 05-10-05
    Ace46 Winnipeg, Canada 05-10-05

    Ace Chucker

    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
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    113
    4
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    "Inspiring and disturbing"

    It was hard to want to continue listening to a young man so weak and self-absorbed, but I kept listening. Maybe it is because I thought he would mature, but more likely simply because the characters are just so real (I had to keep reminding myself that this is fiction).

    This book works on many levels. It does a terrific job telling the stories of people who live through internal turmoil and/or external tragedy, and grow from it. It also puts human faces and human emotions to individuals who live through tragedy in ethnic or religious conflict. It shows the challenges of immigration to the West, both in getting here and establishing a life, and it shows the sacrifices that parents make for their children. It is disturbing and inspiring at the same time.

    It is easily the best book that I have ?listened? to since I joined Audible, and I would highly recommend it to any other listener.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan 03-29-05
    Jan 03-29-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    5
    5
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    "Listen - don't read!"

    A friend recommended I read The Kite Runner - but finding it on Audible I chose to download and listen. I thoroughly recommend this option. The author's voice (and accent), reading his own story, gives it added drama and charisma. One of the very best books I have "read" through the magic of audible - it gave me hours of walking pleasure - in fact I extended my daily walk from 3 to 5 kilometers, so I could hear more!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leslie Laguna Beach, CA, USA 11-23-04
    Leslie Laguna Beach, CA, USA 11-23-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
    ratings
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    137
    4
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    0
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    "Kite Runner"

    This year I have listened to 24 audio books and this is my favorite. Just an amazing book that manages to convey--in the author's own voice--the global universe that we are all becoming a part of, in its horror and its promise.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane 10-27-04
    Jane 10-27-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
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    185
    4
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    Overall
    "A good book"

    The Kite Runner is not an upbeat book. It is more like a classic Greek tragedy. Events and human frailty inevitable lead to pain and suffering. The book was sometimes disturbing, but there are bright moments. The writing style was excellent, the story engrossing, and the reading a listening pleasure. Add to that insights into Afghan culture and you have great book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Garry Grossman Bethesda, MD USA 08-31-04
    Garry Grossman Bethesda, MD USA 08-31-04 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    58
    1
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    1
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    Overall
    "The Kite Runner--MAGNFICENT"

    This could be the best book you read this year. And the reading performance by the author is nothing short of inspired. My sole disappointment was that I wanted the book to be nonfiction!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    steve kearny, NJ, United States 06-28-14
    steve kearny, NJ, United States 06-28-14 Member Since 2010

    Addicted to Audible since 2009

    HELPFUL VOTES
    852
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    375
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    Story
    "Really Good!"

    After hearing about how great this book was, I decided to give it a chance and found that this book was completely not what I was expecting. Yet, I still thought this was a really good listen. The author, who is also the narrator, does a terrific job with the narration. He is also an excellent writer as this book was creative and well-written. It takes the reader/listener on a roller coaster ride of emotions and I couldn't get enough of it. Two thumbs up!!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G. House Sr. Sherborn, MA, United States 04-04-14
    G. House Sr. Sherborn, MA, United States 04-04-14 Member Since 2016

    I am an avid listener. I listen between 75-100 hours per month on my iPhone: 60% fiction to 40% non-fiction.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2465
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    "A Timeless Story of Guilt and Redemption and Hope"

    I had been told that this book was wonderful. I have to admit that after the first 1.5 hours of listening I was bored out of my skull. If I hadn't committed to read it for the book circle I'm in, I would have stopped. Then like a sudden gust, they story took shape and I was hooked. This is a story about guilt and coming of age in a country of turmoil. It is about friendship,jealously, fear, betrayal, redemption and anguish. But is also a story of hope and determination.

    The story is read by the author and though his pace his slow, I think he makes the book come alive. There are plenty of allusions that after you complete the novel that you will ponder. If you are a romance, sci-fi or thriller lover you will find this book tiring. Yet, if you like thrillers and near-to-true-life stories, it is a must. I give it a solid thumbs up.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sam Motes Tampa 05-25-13
    Sam Motes Tampa 05-25-13 Listener Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    231
    ratings
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    381
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    "Thousand times over better than expected"

    This book pulled me in like no other in recent memory with its tale of betrayal, heart break, bravery, rendition, forgiveness, and full on unconditional love. I have seen the movie which was beautifully done but the book was so much more layered and engrossing. Best book I have read in along time.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • smile
    10/7/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great story"

    I found the narrators voice hard to listen to at the beginning, but definitely worth a listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • J
    10/1/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful story - annoying voice"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Kite Runner to be better than the print version?

    No


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Kite Runner?

    Its a great story


    Which character – as performed by Khaled Hosseini – was your favourite?

    i found his voice annoying, but that's aa personal comment and a shame as its a great story and this is the first time I think I'll buy the book and read it


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    who has the time?


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Charles
    9/25/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent Story but Hate the Narrator"
    Would you try another book written by Khaled Hosseini or narrated by Khaled Hosseini?

    I would read another of his books but not listen to anything narrated by him..


    How could the performance have been better?

    Hate his voice and accent..


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • elPaco
    6/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Stunning"

    A quite beautiful book. Heart- wrenching story - beautifully written - beautifully narrated. I had seen the film already and whilst there were a couple of changes from the book, I still thoroughly enjoyed reading/listening to the book. Probably one of the best........
    I loved it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sophie
    5/13/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Terrible narration ruined it."
    Any additional comments?

    I just kept wanting this book to end. I drifted in and out of it, didn't fully concentrate.
    It has potential, maybe I will blame the narration not gripping me enough? hmmmm

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Emma
    5/9/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Compelling"

    I finished this book in 3 days as I could not stop reading/listening to it.
    The story is beautifully constructed and tugs at your heart-strings on a number of occasions.
    For me the most memorable part has to be the ending as it makes you reflect on all that had happened throughout the story, as if you were a part of it.
    Khaled Hosseini is a wonderful author/narrator and his voice fits perfectly to the voice of Amir.
    I highly recommend this book, but fair warning: this isn't a 'light' read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • M.
    3/27/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "for you, a thousand times over"




    loved it! recommended it to others already! Beautiful descriptions. Vivid writing style!definitely a book to talk about and remember.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Carrie
    uk
    8/2/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Stunning"
    Where does The Kite Runner rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is the best audio book I have ever heard, and is easily in the top 10 books I've come across in my 47 years


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The lead character is beautifully flawed. The characters are real, you can feel them, you can smell them and you can relate to their humanity.


    Have you listened to any of Khaled Hosseini’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    This is the first book I've heard the author perform but I will listen to anything he does in the future and read everything he writes.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I listened to the whole book in a day and a half! I wanted to eek it out but I could. I will actually read it at some point in the future, it is that good.


    Any additional comments?

    Beautiful and immense in it's humanity.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Crafty jan
    5/12/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A life enhancing experience in Reading this bookI"
    What did you like most about The Kite Runner?

    I actually feel ashamed of the really stereo type opinion I had of Afganastan and it's people before reading this book . It really opened my eyes to the fact that away from all the horrors of the war and terrorism , the ordinary people are just like us and love their families .


    What did you like best about this story?

    The graphic descriptions of the feelings and emotions of the main character , and how one seemingly random incident can colour and affect the rest of your life .


    Which character – as performed by Khaled Hosseini – was your favourite?

    I felt in all honesty that all the main characters carried equal weight in the story , at different times in the life of the main character .


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    The book had a real emotional effect on me in that I finished the story wishing I could know what happened next . Clearly not just a happy ending , but an idea of how the horrors of the war would be affecting the next generation .


    Any additional comments?

    An excellent read and I would highly recommend it , but be prepared to have some of possibly preconceived ideas on the country and it's people overturned .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. R. J. King
    Cambridge, UK
    2/4/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A great book"

    This is a great book; a brilliant story. Sci-Fi is my first love, but The Kite Runner slots effortlessly into my top-five. I feel like I've been to Afghanistan , admired Baba and been terrified of Assef. I want to sit on top of the hill and eat pomegranates and run kites.
    This is, without doubt, one the best books I've ever read. There's nothing spare. Every word adds to the story, and I'm sorry I finished it today.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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