The Kite Runner Study Guide

The Kite Runner

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

The Kite Runner is the story of Amir and Hassan, two boys in pre-Soviet Afghanistan. Amir is the son of a wealthy merchant, Hassan a servant. The two have an uneven friendship. Hassan is secretly Amir's half-brother, a product of his father's indiscretion with a servant. The two grow apart during the war and the subsequent rise of the Taliban and Amir journeys to America where his father passes away. He returns to Afghanistan to claim Hassan's son in the wake of Hassan's death at the hands of the Taliban.

Amir enters Afghanistan with the help of Farid, a man who has contempt for Amir because he was born with privilege. Farid dislikes Amir at first because he believes that the only reason Amir is returning to Afghanistan is so he can sell off property, and ultimately make money. Farid takes Amir to Wahid's house. There, Amir is served a dinner, which he offers to share with Wahid's children. Amir notices that the children are staring at his watch. During dinner, Amir reveals to Wahid and his family that he has returned to Afghanistan in order to rescue his half brother's son. This is suprising, because Amir is very reluctant to reveal his father's lack of pride and honor. Later on, he overhears Wahid and his wife arguing that they had to give food to Amir since he was a guest, even though they barely had any food for themselves. Farid thinks better of him when he learns why he is going to Kabul. Farid and Amir leave the house, and Amir gives his watch to one of the children. However, Amir realizes the kids weren't staring at his watch at all, they were staring at his food. At the very end of the chapter, Amir puts money under his matress for the children to find and buy food with. He also realized it had been 26 years since he had put money under someone's bed; the first time, however, was for a terrible purpose. This reveals how much Amir has grown and changed as a man.

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