The only question I was asking myself after I finished reading this book is: Why didn’t I read this masterpiece before?
The Kite Runner piqued my interest from the first few pages itself. The language exuded class yet was dipped in an ocean of simplicity. The intricate relationship that Baba, Amir, and Hassan share was depicted with such expertise that by the time the first 30% of the novel was completed and the first heart-wrenching scene arrived, (I won’t reveal it as it could be a spoiler) I was drenched in a pool of tears.
The characterization of all characters is excellent, despite having a single POV throughout the book, except for one chapter (from Rahim Khan’s POV). All the characters are bathed in shades of white or dark, but still one can empathize with them. The pace is excellent throughout. I never felt bored for even a single second. The secret of a main character which is revealed at around half of the book was totally unexpected and devastating.
The language is exemplary; poetic and literary to the core, despite using simple words. Several sentences made you pause, re-read them, and marvel at their beauty. There are Indian commercial authors who have the ability to tug at your heartstrings (like Ravinder Singh, Durjoy Datta), but their language leaves a lot to be desired. And there are literary authors like Arundhati Roy, Jhumpa Lahiri who write well but fail to move you. However, Khaled Hosseini maintains perfect balance, melting your heart despite keeping the literary quotient at a very high level. Kudos to such rare talent. I can only recall ‘Trail of Broken Wings’ as a literary book which was capable of evoking strong emotion, especially towards the end. Although the author blends a few Afghan words into the narrative every now and then, they are well explained and suited to the scene/dialogue.
Towards the end of the book I was dissolved in an ocean of tears. The Kite Runner is a heartbreaking yet realistic tale. In the review of ‘The Notebook’ by Nicholas Sparks I said 5 stars is insufficient for that book, especially the last chapter. But for this, 100 stars doesn’t do justice to the quality and soul of this breathtaking, moving book. Khaled Hosseini has got another die-hard fan now – me. This book and its deep emotions will stay within me forever.