Searching for redemption in “The Kite Runner “
The Kite Runner is a novel written by Khaled Hosseini, an Afghan-American author and published by Riverhead Books in 2003. It tells the story of an Afghanistan-born young boy, Amir, who hails from Kabul, with his closest friend Hassan, and his servant’s father. The Kite Runner is an unforgettable, heartbreaking story about the rare friendship between a wealthy boy and a son of his father’s servant. It also stands as a well-written novel whose plot is set in a country under the destruction process, and it is driven by reading, redemption possibilities, exploration of the powers possessed by fathers over their sons (sacrifices, love, truth and lies), and the price paid for betrayal. It is also viewed as a sweeping story of love, family, and friendship brought out against the historically devastating backdrop in Afghanistan for the last thirty years.
The story is set in tumultuous events associated with the fall of the monarchy in Afghanistan due to the intervention of the Soviet military to the country. According to Hosseini, ‘the overthrowing of the king by the Soviet military was the genesis of the issues affecting Afghanistan.’ The revolution was characterized by gunfights and random loss of life, ‘huddled together in the dining room and waiting for the sun to rise, none of us had any notion that a way of life had ended.’ The revolution resulted into many Afghans seek refuge in Pakistan and the United States of America, furthermore leading to the rise of the Taliban regime which opposed the occupiers.
Hosseini often referred to the story as a father-son story that emphasizes the usual narration aspects that he further employs in his other works. In the whole story, Amir and Baba together with Hassan and his dad Ali are at the center of the narration of almost every element of the story. The themes of redemption and guilt are prominent with the climax depicting violent act the two friends Amir and Hassan cannot stop from happening. Amir could not let the transgressions he did to Hassan while in their childhood go by as he was ready and willingly went to afghan to look for Hassan’s son. Amir accepts his transgression when he admits to the boy through his advice ‘there is a way to be good again’. “I hope you will heed this: A man, who has no conscience, no goodness, does not suffer.” Growing up, Amir saw Hassan as an inferior person as a result of his lower social status thus was never that close to him ‘in the end I was Pashtun and he was Hazara. I was Sunni and he was Shi’a’.
In this novel, we are introduced to different characters, who contribute to the fantastic portrayal of events in the novel.
The writer uses these characters well to bring out the themes of the novel, portrayal scenes and helps the author utilize the different literary styles especially flashback. Its rich content is the reason why it is greatly appreciated and recommended in society for different purposes like educational purposes.