Reading Journal #2
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Khaled Hosseini’s novel, The Kite Runner, is a masterpiece that focuses on Amir’s life,
from his early days in Kabul and his contribution to his later experiences as an established writer
in California. The first part of the book introduces the reader to Amir’s desire for redemption.
For example, in the first three chapters, Amir recalls his early days in Afghanistan and the events
around 1975. He recalls his relationship with his father, Baba, his servant friend, Hassan, and the
trials that led to their separation. Although the novelist does not immediately tell the reader the
actual events of 1975 that led to the separation of Amir and Hassan, he alludes to the theme of
redemption from the perspective of the protagonist. For Amir, the events of 1975 reflect the reali-
ty of his present life notably although it was distant in history. So through the first part of the
book, Amir expresses his need for redemption from his childhood actions and experiences, espe-
cially towards Hassan.
In the first part of the book, the author introduces the reader to the main characters, Amir
and Hassan, and their personality. He describes the sensitive and sometimes selfish personality of
Amir, his Pashtun heritage, and his desire to please his dad Baba. He also develops the character
of Hassan to contrast Amir’s and function as a platform for further plot development. The novel-
ist introduces the reader to the friendship of Amir and Hassan, their differences, and the huddles
each had to overcome (Hosseini, 2013). The writer also introduces the reader to the cultural prac-
tices of Kabul, which is the setting for the first part of the book.
In addition, through the contrast of Amir and Hassan’s heritage, the writer familiarizes
the audience with the religious, ethnic, and cultural perceptions the main characters. Through
cultural practices of the Afghan such as kite fighting, the author hints to the meaning of the book
title and its essence in understanding the main themes. In other words, the setting and plot of the
book form the basis of Amir’s later desire to redeem himself from his past. It establishes a con-
trast in tone between the young and the old personality of Amir, and his desire to correct his for-
I like this book because of its tone and character development. For example, Amir retro-
spectively considers his life in Kabul and the changes he wishes he made. Besides, the introduc-
tory language of the book offers many vocabulary options useful for improving my English lan-
guage proficiency. It offers various descriptive and literary forms that are easy to understand, es-
pecially for students that use English as a secondary language like me.
I like this book because of the suspense it creates. For instance, in chapter one of the
book, the narrator recalls the events of 1975 as a 12-year old boy in Kabul. He mentions that they
were responsible for his later outlook in life. However, he does not give any specifics or details
about them. The author uses suspense to let the reader temporarily ignore the importance of the
events of 1975 in Amir’s life.
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