The Kite Runner Audiobook | Khaled Hosseini | Audible.com
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The Kite Runner | [Khaled Hosseini]

The Kite Runner

Why we think it’s a great listen: Never before has an author’s narration of his fiction been so important to fully grasping the book’s impact and global implications. Taking us from Afghanistan in the final days of its monarchy to the present, The Kite Runner is the unforgettable story of the friendship between two boys growing up in Kabul. Their intertwined lives, and their fates, reflect the eventual tragedy of the world around them.
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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

4.4 (6220 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Tiffany Corona, CA, United States 06-01-09
    Tiffany Corona, CA, United States 06-01-09 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    134
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    37
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    9
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    "Loved It!"

    This starts out slow. In fact, I was complaining to a friend that it was so boring I wasn't sure I wanted to read it. But once you get past the important set up, this has to be one of my favorite books. It's all about how seemingly simple decisions can alter the course of your life. I loved the glimpse into another culture and the getting the narrator's (the author in this case) perfect pronunciation.

    My only issue is that it starts out saying it is an Audible kids book, which it absolutely should not be. This is defintely adult material. Not only that, the themes of coming to terms with growing up and one's past would be beyond most kids. Other than that, I highly recommend this book. It's a wonderful read (listen)!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allen Larchmont, NY, USA 08-18-08
    Allen Larchmont, NY, USA 08-18-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    54
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    18
    16
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    "Ear vs Eye"

    I have listened to this book and just now saw the movie. I have to vote for the spoken word in this case. Mr. Hosseini's accent is lyrical and adds a unique quality to this material that would be missing in the film or print. I hold this in the same high regard as Frank McCourt reading Angela's Ashes.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    11-28-07
    11-28-07 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    4
    1
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    0
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    "Powerfully written"

    What an incredible story. It's inconceivable to me that this is fiction. If so, Hosseini's ability to develop characters with such depth and intensity is a true gift. The story is wrapped with such detail and emotion is was difficult to put down. Don't cut yourself short with the abridged version, you will want to hold onto every single word!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MadMadeleine Los Angeles 05-24-07
    MadMadeleine Los Angeles 05-24-07 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
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    10
    2
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    0
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    "A Dissenting Voice"

    To me the book was interesting because of the setting. The descriptions and details created a vivid portrait of a foreign culture. But the book is not well written. The irony is that the main character is learning to be an author. He comments on the use of cliches, but uses them anyway. One of the chapters ends with a foreshadowing that is a groaner. The plot crosses the line into the preposterous. The evil character is a cross between a Taliban and a nazi, maybe because being in the Taliban just wasn't bad enough. Part of the story is entertaining, even informative, but in the end the events became more and more unbelievable. The violence seems like a Hollywood movie rather than authentic and frightening. The reading by the author was harsh and awkward, and strangely unemotional. And why doesn't the author use the English pronunciation for "Afghanistan" and other Afhgan words? That was confusing at first, and then annoying.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marcy Raleigh, NC, USA 11-16-05
    Marcy Raleigh, NC, USA 11-16-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    13
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    "You must read this book!!!"

    We've all done it, stood and watched when we should have interefered, lay silent when we should have spoken up, especially as children. Amir had the luxury of being born into the right family, which is about all the kid as going for him in the beginning. This story introduces an Afghanistan that many of us do not know. It is timely and relevent to what's going on in the world. As readers we are taken on a journey with Amir to reconcile his character deficiencies in a country he no longer recognizes. Through will and determination he did not posess as a child, he is able to atone for his sins and "make everything right". This is a beautiful, heart wrenching story that I know I will never forget. It has affected me deeply, for which I am thankful.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    College Student 09-14-05 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
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    "Wow"

    Wow, this is a true gem. The story is vivid and compelling and translates into spoken word marvelously. Even more amazing (for some reason) the author has a real day job, he is a physician??

    As for listening, having the author narrate can be a risky proposition, but Khaled has a wonderful voice and brings a feeling and flavour to his work that adds another dimension to an already great tale.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. J. Hodges Sunnyvale, Ca USA 09-02-05
    R. J. Hodges Sunnyvale, Ca USA 09-02-05 Member Since 2001

    kendoka_ca

    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
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    12
    2
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    Overall
    "Outstanding work"

    This book truly captivated me. I listen to Audible books often on my lengthy commute, but this time I spent considerable "driveway" time listening to this book. I would routinely arrive home but not be able to stop listening to the compelling story playing through my car sound system.

    The poignant story itself will be enough to hold most listeners interest, but the rich language that creates the vivid landscape in which the story unfolds is addicting. The primary character's childhood fears, selfishness and angst is the core of the story and is revealed in the first person in an intimate and provocative way. The symmetry of the the entire story, from beginning to end, evolves naturally and completely. It is impossible not to be touched by this story.

    This book is also unique in that the narration is done by the author himself. Like many of the reviewers whose reviews I have read and found helpful, I have come to make my Audible.com selections as much for the narrators as for the authors themselves. My favorite slections have been those when a great story was matched with wonderful narration. This was such a case. The author/narrator's subtle accent and fluent pronunciation of Afghan names and places reinforced the authenticity of the book. Beyond that, his voice and the production quality of the recording was outstanding.

    If I was going to guess what the author himself would most want to hear is that he has told a wonderful story in an authentic voice.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sylvia Lac Le Jeune, British Columbia, Canada 08-07-05
    Sylvia Lac Le Jeune, British Columbia, Canada 08-07-05 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    12
    4
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    0
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    "Just excellent"

    I've listened to many audiobooks, but this was the best so far. The narrator is excellent and the story is incredible and easy to follow. The length of this book is justified -- just the right amount of detail. I will definitely listen to this one again.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shaddi Laguna Niguel, CA, United States 07-25-05
    Shaddi Laguna Niguel, CA, United States 07-25-05 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    133
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    425
    23
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    5
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    "A must read!"

    In these times, this story is a beautiful introduction to the afgani culture and people. You learn about the people you hear about on the news in the context of a beautifully written story.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. David Mintz Cary, NC USA 07-13-05
    R. David Mintz Cary, NC USA 07-13-05 Member Since 2003

    rdavidm

    HELPFUL VOTES
    87
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    13
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    "Amazing...beautiful...profound"

    This is the best Audible book I have ever enjoyed. Brilliantly written, read wonderfully by the author, absorbing from start to finish...I loved it.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 31-40 of 474 results PREVIOUS134548NEXT
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  • Laura
    bere regis, DORSET, United Kingdom
    7/2/05
    Overall
    "Touching and gripping."

    Excellent; a window on another world as well as a touching story of love, devotion and atonement. I highly recommend this book.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Lynne
    ArgentonFrance
    3/6/07
    Overall
    "Wonderfully Poignant"

    This a beautifully written poignant story of unconditional love during turbulent times in Afghanistan and of how an adolescent boy's jealousy has long and devastating repercussions. This book is a journey of emotions from the first page to the last.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Sarah J
    Kent.UK
    1/15/11
    Overall
    "Not as good as the hype."

    Before listening to this I had heard many rave reviews of the book and therefore began to listen with high expectations. However, I found the story very disappointing, mainly due to the lack of affection I felt for the main character. He seemed to be amoral and self-centred, which resulted in me not really caring what happened to him. Although the book is well written, I found that my lack of connection with the main character meant that I had to force myself to listen to the whole book. I ended up being relieved when it was over, and confused about what everyone else seems to love about this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Paul & Susy
    London United Kingdom
    5/17/08
    Overall
    "Painted and insightful picture of Afghanistan"

    It's a story of honour, regret and redemption; and two families divided by ethnic prejudice.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Catherine
    angus, United Kingdom
    3/25/08
    Overall
    "stunningly good"

    I don't usually read books about war and strife preferring to be entertained, but came across this book because of all the hype and thought I would give it a go. I was hooked from the beginning - it is a hauntingly good book and although it is set in troubling times it looks at the very real human problems that happen to individuals caught up in uneasy times. I listened all the way through in one day, and then went straight on to download his next book. Buy it - you certainly won't be disappointed

    1 of 1 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
  • Sigrin
    Valdisere, France
    2/3/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A must read"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Kite Runner to be better than the print version?

    Yes as It was read by a Afghan who took me to his home and I felt I understood it better


    What other book might you compare The Kite Runner to, and why?

    Its a male version of a Thousand splendid suns


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

    Khaled Hosseini is an amazing writer


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

    Yes I felt I knew the people in the book like my family so laughed and cried with them.


    Any additional comments?

    Please get his "and the mountains echoed" into Audiobooks in English please

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • MRM
    UK
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Disturbing yet heart-warming tale"

    It was wonderful to have this amazing book read by the author himself. He writes and reads with such sensitivity. He brings to life an era of Afghan history which is now gone. The changing perspectives of the narrator as a child and an adult provide a very human dimension. I became completely absorbed in the character. I'd highly recommend it to anyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • MR
    United Kingdom
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Brilliant"

    The Kite Runner is the first book I have read by Khaled Hosseini and it is without doubt one of the most moving I have ever experienced. At times it had me close to tears (not quite as I am a man...) and on a few occasions laughing out loud. I also downloaded, A Thousand Splendid Suns by the same author which was also decent but not on the same level. Not too long in duration. Highly recommended by myself!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Andy
    Uxbridge, United Kingdom
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Loved it!"

    This was one of the very first audiobooks that I purchased and from then on I was hooked. The story was beautiful, humbling, frightening and inspiring. An excellent book of modern day Afghanistan providing vivid context of the life and trials of it people.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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