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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 (6776 )
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4.5 (2083 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Wenying New York, NY, USA 02-12-05
    Wenying New York, NY, USA 02-12-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
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    0
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    Overall
    "Good at the first glance"

    The story is well-told and the writing style is good. However, at the end of listening, you know that it is just a STORY, and nothing more. There are a significant number of holes if one muses for a while. For example, the father not giving Hussein the most important gift - education; the quick transition from a person who has neither courage nor a sense of fairness to a super-hero... Thus, the book seems contrived and artificial, like a Chinese dish with too much MSG.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dolores L. Loftin Sun Lakes, AZ, US 02-12-05
    Dolores L. Loftin Sun Lakes, AZ, US 02-12-05 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    72
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    72
    34
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    "The Kite Runner"

    I have been an avid audible "reader" for years and this book is one of the best "reads" I've listened to. Looking for other books by this author.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elena Jefferson Valley, NY, USA 02-11-05
    Elena Jefferson Valley, NY, USA 02-11-05 Member Since 2005
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    Overall
    "Vivid storytelling"

    A genuinely compelling story. Rich in detail wrapped around the loss of innocence and culture as a young man grows up in Kabul, immigratres to the US, and then returns to redeem an action be did not take in his youth. I agree with another reviewer at the surprise in being so engrossed with a character that at first appeared so self-absorbed and weak. In the end I believe it made the character's life experience more accessible. Not a "5" because the narrator's voice was a bit whiney - thought not unlike the young man described.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Betty Lou Fockler Centerburg OH USA 02-07-05
    Betty Lou Fockler Centerburg OH USA 02-07-05 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
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    29
    10
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    "Put this Book at the TOP of your list!"

    I'm an avid audio book lover who has listened to hundreds. This book is added to my All Time Greatest. It is captivating from the very beginning and (my test of a great book) I was sad when it ended. I wanted more. You will enjoy this book if you like getting to know your characters as "new friends." I thoroughly enjoyed learning how the Afghanistan wars affected "real" people and their struggles. It is nearly a 12 hour listen, but it went much too quickly. It is read by the author and I believe his slight accent makes this book come more alive through his use of his language here and there. Wonderful book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Margaret Brooklyn, NY, USA 02-04-05
    Margaret Brooklyn, NY, USA 02-04-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
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    3
    3
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    "It was OK"

    What I enjoyed most in this book was the immersion into the Afgani culture. The story was good, if unbelievable and often predictable. However, the "writing" itself was mediocre. The editor should have worked harder with this first-time author. I was often bored and often annoyed at the predicability of it. However, the story line and the timeliness of the book redeemed it for me.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steven Evanston, IL, USA 01-31-05
    Steven Evanston, IL, USA 01-31-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    43
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    18
    14
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    1
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    "Wonderful"

    Don't miss this one.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emilio Atlanta, GA, United States 01-29-05
    Emilio Atlanta, GA, United States 01-29-05 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    114
    4
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    "beautiful story"

    Pinpoint perspective about a demographic so misrepresented in view of present events.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Skarie ND 01-29-05
    R. Skarie ND 01-29-05 Member Since 2003

    jadia

    HELPFUL VOTES
    70
    ratings
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    23
    3
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    0
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    Overall
    "A Truely Great Book"

    All I can really say about this book, is that it is simply one of the best i've ever read, and the Narration is very good, easy to understand. This is the sort of book that simply, just tells a good story, gives you an insight into the different minds, the different cultures, and the different things that makes us human. No matter what genre of story You enjoy, I am sure you will like this one. It is not a drawn out love story, nor an action pact racer, but a page turner just the same. I Truely enjoyed this audio book and would recomend it for Everyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gingerpenny95 Fairfield, Ca, United States 01-27-05
    gingerpenny95 Fairfield, Ca, United States 01-27-05 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    131
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    400
    33
    FOLLOWERS
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    6
    1
    Overall
    "The best download I have ever listened to."

    I have been an Audible member for almost two years now, and this was the best of the books I have read. This novel has everything you could want in a good read - humor, irony, fascinating plot, humanity. I am going to listen to it again, something I don't often do with my library.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patty Huntington Beach, CA 01-15-05
    Patty Huntington Beach, CA 01-15-05 Member Since 2004

    Patty

    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
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    18
    8
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    "My best listen yet"

    Loved it! I was hesitant to buy it as it sounded so far afield of what I usually like. But wow! My husband who prides himself on not reading fiction was so engrossed in it that he was consistently late to work sitting in the car once he arrived in the mornings. Best book I've gotten from audible. A must read!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 451-460 of 484 results PREVIOUS145464749NEXT
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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
  • Karen
    HAYLING ISLAND, United Kingdom
    4/8/13
    Overall
    "Great story - tissues needed for lots of tears!"

    A great story which takes the reader through a myriad of emotions - be prepared for tears!



    I loved the twists and turns of the story - most of which I could never have predicted.



    Without wanting to, I always had great sympathy for the central character - his misdemeanours were obviously key to the plot and had such devastating effects and yet, I felt so sorry for him.



    The descriptions of the characters and scenery was powerful and deep so it made them very believable, and I thought that the story may have been autobiographical until I checked!



    Well written and powerful.

    1 of 1 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
  • 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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lesley
    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!

    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
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