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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 (9252 )
5 star
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3 star
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Overall
4.6 (4324 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.5 (4291 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (52)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Ann Staunton, VA, USA 01-24-07
    Ann Staunton, VA, USA 01-24-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    I truly enjoyed listening to this audiobook. The author reading it added even more authenticity to the characters and the story. What a powerful telling! Americans should take time to learn more about the Afghan culture and what has happened in their country since 9/11. This book, although fiction, rang true in my ears. I'd recommend it to those with conscious and a compassion for others.
    Excellent literature!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cynthia 12-29-06
    Cynthia 12-29-06 Listener Since 2006
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    37
    1
    Overall
    "Great story"

    This was one of the best books I've read in a long time. Having the author read it was the best part.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katy J. Berner Amherst, NY United States 11-09-06
    Katy J. Berner Amherst, NY United States 11-09-06 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    127
    14
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Good but Mature"

    Like another reviewer noted this books turning point is a somewhat graphic and incredibly emotional event. That I think this moment is what makes the book so great - we all have a moment in our life which changes us - for the narrator his changes our lives too. It is beautifully written novel that gives readers a look at a world most of us may never experience. It is truly a wonderful experience, although like our lives - it is slow in parts - but the story is worth it. Beautiful book, incredible characters, and a story that sticks with you. Hopefully we all can learn about ourselves as well as the lives of his characters.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew Crystal Lake, IL, USA 09-30-06
    Andrew Crystal Lake, IL, USA 09-30-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    16
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Powerful! Moving! Incredible!"

    Unforgettable! Even though at times the story was almost too tragic to take and the end left me wanting just a bit more hope, this is one incredible book! I connected with the characters immediately and by the end I felt a profound connection to the history and culture of Afghanistan and a deep appreciation for its tragic history over the last 40 years or so.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephanie Hollis, NH, USA 09-29-06
    Stephanie Hollis, NH, USA 09-29-06
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    "Loved this book!"

    The story is great, the narration is fantastic. I couldn't stop listening! The fact that the author (an Afghan-American) narrates adds an incredible sense of credibility and personalization.

    I can't stop thinking about this story, or tell enough people how great it is, even months later.

    Can't wait to hear more from this author...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deborah Parker, CO USA 09-12-06
    Deborah Parker, CO USA 09-12-06 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    119
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    85
    28
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
    0
    Overall
    "Beautiful, beautiful story!"

    This book will take your breath away. The main character is at once, both noble and despicable. The landscape is haunting and the listener can appreciate the love the Afghan people have for their homeland. If you would like to have a firm grip on the action of the book, open an Atlas and take a look at the maps of Afghanistan and Iran. The place names are difficult, but seeing them on the map helps to orient you to the locations in the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Raoul RoermondUnited Kingdom 08-18-06
    Raoul RoermondUnited Kingdom 08-18-06
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    Overall
    "good, but middle part bit boring"

    Good book, although the middle part was a bit hard to get through. Overall worth listening to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert cypress, TX, USA 08-14-06
    Robert cypress, TX, USA 08-14-06 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    109
    17
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Mixed Review"

    I have a hard time recommending this book yet, I am glad I listen to it. It gave me insight into a world and culture so different from my own and very real in today's war driven society. I found character names and places hard to follow. The language was difficult to comprehend at times. But the story is gripping and character's very real.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rene San Marcos, US, Canada 08-14-06
    Rene San Marcos, US, Canada 08-14-06 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    33
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Compelling"

    Beautifully written, the reader will be transported into the day and age of the main character. Couldn't put it down.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robin Tampa, FL, USA 08-02-06
    Robin Tampa, FL, USA 08-02-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    20
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "To kill a mockingbird"

    This book was a treat and to have it read by the author in perfect English and to hear Farsi pronounciations was a gift. The story is nothing like the classic To Kill a Mockingbird and yet has the same emotional impact with similar themes (prejudice, relationships, love, honor, standing up to bullies), the same elegance of structure and trust that the reader will connect the dots on a deeper level, and same transportation to a different community.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • 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.

    9 of 9 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.

    8 of 8 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.

    3 of 3 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

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • a little bit of a grumpy old so and so
    London,UK
    2/3/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Simply a brilliant epic story"

    This is the harrowing tale of Amir from his early days in Afghanistan through to the U.S. and back to find the boyhood friend he betrayed. It's backdrop is a period of almost continuous war from the Russian invasion, through to the time of the brutal Taliban regime. It is harrowing in places, brilliantly written and performed and impossible to put down. In my top 10 any day.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Miss Melanie Gedge
    2/2/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "outstanding"

    Absolutely fantastic! Hosseini's voice really transports you to the streets of Kabul. A moving story which will stay with you forever.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • missmandii
    1/26/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "loved it!"

    Loved it, can't wait to read/listen to other books by this author! Bravo as the author said

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Lisa
    1/10/15
    Overall
    "Breathtaking!"

    Could not leave the book if I wanted to. It became part of my thoughts. I had to keep listening.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Corrado M.
    10/22/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Magnificent"

    One of the best books I've come across. An incredible experience enriched by the narration of the Author himself.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Greenfly
    Lincolnshire, United Kingdom
    8/13/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wow, what a story!"

    I loved this book it gave a new insight into the troubles of Afghanistan, brutal in parts, made me flinch but for all that a great tale of love, betrayal & consequence. Didn't want it to end & the author Khaled Hosseini was a brilliant narrator!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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