Book Review Of The Kite Runner Novel English Literature Essay
|✅ Paper Type: Free Essay||✅ Subject: English Literature|
|✅ Wordcount: 1400 words||✅ Published: 1st Jan 2015|
The book entitled The Kite Runner is an interesting book. As I started reading, I was impressed by the way the characters were being presented. The interpretation of the two drastically different cultures of Afghanistan and America were the main scenarios of this book that could catch the sight of a curious reader. This book is fascinating because it reflects the people’s natural behavior. It also discusses the life of Afghani people during the period of the Russian invasion to the Taliban regime.
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The story is set against a backdrop of tumultuous events, from the fall of the monarchy in Afghanistan through the Soviet invasions, the mass exodus of refugees to Pakistan and the United States, and the Taliban regime. Moreover, the novel became more interesting when Baba and Amir had to escape to the United States and had to start a completely new life there. It was very difficult and challenging for them because of the differences in their religion and culture. Their religion was Islam, and it was almost impossible for them to find similar culture in America. The father and the son had to adapt in a completely new environment with new culture and new experiences which made them miserable for the first few months. It was a difficult experience to them when they had to work for their own living, which was different from their native country. As stated in the novel, Amir felt unexpected to live with his father sharing a single room. Moreover, Baba, who was once regarded as the strongest person in Kabul, was no longer revered in the United States. Baba, who lived a majestic life, had lost his fame and dignity and no longer enjoyed living in California.
The book begins with the story of Amir, a well-to-do Pashtun boy from the Wazir Akbar Khan district of Kabul. He was haunted by the guilt of betraying his childhood friend, Hassan, the son of his father’s Hazara servant. Though the book says that Amir and Hassan were childhood friends who spend most of their cherished times together, I feel they never became close friends. Hassan, being Hazara origin and also the servant of Amir, was treated differently. Hassan used to treat Amir as his intimate friend, which can be inferred from the event of the kite tournament. Amir, on the other hand, used to test his loyalty to Hassan frequently. I think Hassan was the soul-sacrifice for Amir, but Amir was a barrier for him. Amir was aware of the talents of Hassan and therefore, feared being close to him. Amir felt that if Hassan would be closer to him, he would dominate Amir sooner because Hassan was liked by everybody; even his father. Amir was jealous of Hassan being well-treated by his father. His jealousy is explicitly expressed when Baba remembers Hassan’s birthday and gives him a gift. He felt that Baba did care more for Hassan than him. But, later when Amir and his father had to leave for the United States because of some political disturbances, he began to see his father differently. There in California, Baba was working very hard, making money for food, house rent, and his college expenses. Then Amir began to think of his father as his role model. Amir felt that his father did this for the sake of his bright future. Because of his father’s generosity, he was successful in his field of literature, embarking on a successful career as a novelist.
In this novel, the author presents an idea of how different origins of people affect their relationships. According to the book, Amir, the protagonist of this novel, expresses his rancor towards the Hazara by showing his behavior towards his childhood friend, Hassan. At the beginning of the story, Hassan says nothing can change the hostile relationship between Pashtuns and Hazara. However, Amir being Pashtun as his origin shows his conservative attitude toward Hassan. By showing such behavior of Amir, the author wants to depict the existence of the caste system in Afghanistan. He wants to specify the reason behind the hatred between these groups of people and also wants to find out its remedy. By presenting Baba’s generosity, the author wants to clear the bad concepts of misbehaving by the people of the same religion. In this novel, Baba acts as a reformer. He treats his son Amir and Hassan equal regardless of their origin. Baba’s concept towards the existing caste system in Afghanistan was neutral. He neither followed the caste system nor opposed it. In fact, he was very much different than the real Afghanis. Regarded as a strong man over in Kabul, he wanted his son to be like him, but Amir failed in every attempt. Amir had an interest in literature and used to compose short stories. However, when he tried to tell his father, Baba used to show no interest in his stories. This made Amir think Baba was a careless father. But, it’s not the fault of Baba for ignoring or listening to his stories; rather it is the misconception of Amir comparing this situation with Baba treating Hassan well. I think the misunderstanding between the characters plays a vital role in thinking of unfair treatment between Amir and Hassan.
In this novel, Amir and Hassan are characterized as childhood friends. Hassan, though, a servant of Amir, got support and encouragement from everybody, even from Baba. Moreover, he showed his defense towards Amir by threatening to shoot out Assef’s eyes with his slingshot. Looking at this characteristic of Hassan, Amir was so jealous of Hassan that he felt that Hassan would achieve more fame and popularity among others if their friendship lasted. In order to weaken his inborn talents, Amir sometimes used to resent Hassan and constantly used to test how loyal he was. Therefore, I think it was not only the tension between the Pashtuns and the Hazaras, but it was also the jealousy of Amir towards Hassan that compelled Amir to treat Hassan unfairly.
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The book Kite Runner is mostly about the redemption. In my opinion, everybody faces some kind of challenges in life. Struggling through those harsh situations, they experience positive and negative consequences. It is obvious that an individual earns most of the things by atoning away the past mistakes through realization, which is the reason of human development. In the book, Amir atones for his treatment of Hassan by bringing Sohrab to America. By helping his son, Sohrab-who was living helplessly under Taliban control, Amir displays his generous character. Actually, it was the jealousy of Amir which made him compelled to treat Hassan unfairly. Later, when he knew from Rahim Khan that Hassan was his half-brother, he felt that he was guilty for not treating his brother fairly, and he tried seeking forgiveness from dead Hassan. I think that it was Amir’s inner force that drove him to return to his country because at that time Amir had realized most of his past mistakes when he spend his life with his father in America. Furthermore, knowing the fact that Hassan was his half brother from Rahim Khan, he was more driven by the feeling of brotherhood, and tried to seek forgiveness towards Hassan by rescuing Sohrab.
Before reading the book, I had some knowledge about Afghanistan because my country Nepal, shares similar cultures and traditions with Afghanistan. Though I had some superficial ideas about the people of Afghanistan, I had an opportunity to gain in-depth insights into the facts of the people and their cultures after reading the book. Before reading this novel, I wondered why Afghanistan could not develop in most areas. However, after reading it, I had a clear picture that Afghanistan was experiencing most of the political instability like invasions of Soviet and North Alliance and also the Taliban invasions. I also found out that the prevailing caste system also affected Afghanistan’s developmental infrastructures. In fact, this novel helped me to understand the value of a mankind and encouraged me to respect others as well. It also helped me to visualize everybody in equal aspects regardless of their origin. Therefore, I think treating everybody equal aids in human development. Furthermore, I think that having a due respect towards mankind encourages the citizens of the country to value their country’s development, which is an important message to the modern developing nations like Afghanistan.
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