This is another book review and chances are that if you are into reading fiction then there is a 99% chance that you might have come across the title The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini who is an Afghan-born physician and a writer who is a U.S citizen and has other popular books to his credit such as A thousand splendid suns, And the mountains echoed etc. The book is all about the protagonist’s, Amir’s, narration and his childhood friend Hassan, when Amir has to make a trip back to war-torn Kabul because he gets a phone call from his father’s, Baba’s, best friend Rahim Khan who opens a can of worms and provides a path for redemption through his violence-stricken watan or Afghanistan. The timeline captures the upheaval right from the overthrow of the king Nadir Shah till the present time of Hamid Karzai.
|The Kite Runner|
The geography of the region, the depiction of the sects and cultural differences have been captured with refreshing delight and the way of life in strife or dire straits is something that is commendable. Amir, the Pushtun, and Hassan, the Hazara form a rivetting bond in spite of seemingly insurmountable odds. The Brotherhood, the angst and the contrasting characterizations could have been a Hindi film potboiler or Jeffrey Archer’s Kane and Abel which might be a case of over-simplifying matters but I’d like to delve into a more pertinent point between the east and the west with all due respect. Sure, we are not the third world without a reason but what really sets this space apart is because of the density of population per square kilometre and the lack of resources as a byproduct, what the western world cannot comprehend is that coincidences are a way of life here whereas they might not happen with such abandon in a western suburb because of the development and the technology. Might be a bit far-fetched but something that I would want to stick my neck out with because I live in India but have most of the comforts of the western world that money can buy.
The reason why I wouldn’t recommend the movie by the same name is not that I am averse to shortcuts but believe there are only a handful of movies that recapture the essence of a book such as The Godfather but such instances are few and far in between and the novel’s movie adaptation falls in the latter. The movie has a rating of 7.6 on IMDBdotcom and was released in the year 2007. I would definitely recommend the novel because it is a contemporary classic to better understand a patriarchal mindset in and around the Khyber Pass.
Ps- Zendagi migzara. Life goes on.