She said, ‘I’m so afraid.’ And I said, ‘Why?,’ and she said, ‘Because I’m so profoundly happy, Dr Rasul. Happiness like this is frightening.’ I asked her why and she said, ‘They only let you be this happy if they’re preparing to take something away from you.

Page 230

In a nutshell


The Kite Runner is a multi-timeline novel that tells the story of Amir, a young boy who grew up in the Wazir Akbar Khan district in Kabul. Cared for by his father Babba and their servant Ali. He grows up flying kites with Ali’s son and his best friend – Hassan. Their friendship is destroyed in the aftermath of an incident following the local kite flying competition. Their relationship is further distanced when Amir and his father flee Afghanistan following the Russian invasion. Decades later, Amir is pulled to return to Afghanistan, now under Taliban rule, to seek the one thing his new world in America cannot give him – redemption.

Book Club Notes


The Kite Runner was published 20 years ago and went on to become a bestseller. It’s easy to see why – it’s a timeless novel and one of the best books I’ve read this year. It is a vivid and engaging story that takes you into Amir’s world and life in Afghanistan before the Taliban came into power and during their rule. 

When I started the book, it felt familiar – like I had read it before, but at some point halfway the story became unfamiliar, leaving me to wonder why I never finished it. My conclusion is that I must have read it at a friend’s house and only gotten halfway before leaving. Because the Kite Runner is not a book you don’t finish, it’s one you stay up all night reading.

The Kite Runner was written after hearing about the Taliban’s ban on kite flying (something the author had grown up doing in Afghanistan). It began as a short story that blossomed into a 340 page book. It’s a book that lingers in your mind long after you turn the final page on the full circle moment. It is beautiful, tragic, raw, hopeful and leaves your mind soaring like a high flying kite.

Read If


You’ve read any of Khaled Hosseini’s other books, have an interest in Afghanistan and its people , or you simply want to read a book you know is going to be breathtakingly brilliant. 

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Storyline – 10 /10
Writing – 10/10
Character Development – 10/10
Plot Twist – 10/10
Shareability – 10/10
10.0Overall Score
A note on our book ratings

Storyline: How good is the storyline? Is it believable and complex or does it make you shake your head in its ridiculousness?

Writing: How well written is the book? Do you find yourself wowed by the writing or unimpressed?

Character Development: Do the characters evolve and grow through the book and are they multi-dimensional?

Plot Twist: Were you able to predict the end, or did the author give you some surprises along the way to keep you on your toes?

Shareability: How likely are you to share the book?

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