This book was by far one of the most emotional books I’ve read. It had so many different types of tragedy that sadly I feel like I can relate too. I also lived in a middle eastern country for 5 years and some of the stuff that happened in this book for example the war between ethnic groups, city’s falling apart due to the war and family’s losing innocents to terrorist, all have happened.
I think that as you read through each chapter you learn more and more about not only Amir but how he grows as a person after going through loss and tragedys.
I recommend this book to everyone to be honest. Everything that you read about has happened or is still happening in different country’s around the world. Women being brutily beaten for no reason, children being raped, family’s and homes being destroyed, and innocent people having ther lives taken away. As wierd as it sounds it has made me thankful to have the safety I do here in Canada.
Amir rushes Sohrab to the emergency room. While waiting in the hospital Amir grabs a sheet and uses it as a prayer mat. He starts praying for the first time in over 15 years. Eventually he falls asleep in a chair and starts to dream of Sohrab. He sees the razor blade he used to cut himself and Sohrab just laying in bloody water. A doctor wakes Amir and tells him that Sohrab lost plenty of blood but will live. For days, Amir stayed in the hospital while Sohrab sleeps. When Sohrab wakes up Amir asks how he feels, but Sohrab doesn’t answer, he reads to him, but Sohrab pays no attention then Sohrab tells Amir he is tired of everything. He tells Amir he should have left him in the water and that he wants his old life back. Amir tells Sohrab that he was coming to tell him that they found a way to get him to America but Sohrab stays completely silent.
In August 2001 Amir and Sohrab arrive in San Francisco. General Taheri and Jamila come over for dinner and while Soraya and Jamila start to set the table, Amir tells General Taheri about the Taliban and what’s going on in Kabul. General Taheri held back from asking about Sohrab at first but finally asks why Amir had brought back a Hazara boy. Amir tells him that Baba slept with a servant woman. Hassan, who is their son is now dead and Sohrab is Hassan’s son and Amir’s nephew. Amir gets offended and tells General Taheri to never to call Sohrab a “Hazara boy” in his presence again. After 9/11 and the American bombing of Afghanistan that occurred after, Amir and Soraya take jobs helping to run and raise money for a hospital on the Afghan-Pakistani border.
In March 2002, Amir takes Sohrab, Soraya, and Kamila to a gathering of Afghans at the park. Sohrab who is still not speaking, stands out in the rain, but the weather starts to clears. Soraya points out that there are kites flying in the sky so Amir finds a kite seller. He buys a new kite then walks over to Sohrab. While Amir checks the string, he talks about Hassan. Then, he asks Sohrab if he wants to fly it. Sohrab doesn’t answer, but when Amir starts running with the kite Sohrab starts to follow him. Amir offers again, and Sohrab takes the string. A green kite approaches for a battle, and while Amir taught Sohrab he notices he looked scared. He showed Sohrab’s what used to be Hassan’s favorite trick. In one move, Amir and Sohrab cut the other kite’s string. People started cheeringn and Sohrab’s started to smile. Amir asks Sohrab if he should run the kite and but he nods yes. Amir replied by saying “For you, a thousand times over,” and starts to run.
After That tragedy happened with Sohrab I feel like nothing made him happy. But once Amir showed him something he and his father both did I think Sohrab started to feel better and open up more
Later on Amir and Sohrab arrive in Islamabad. Amir goes to take a nap and when he wakes up he realizes Sohrab was gone. He thinks of places he would be and then remembers Sohrab’s love for the mosque. When they arrived there they found him in the mosque parking lot and started talking about their parents. He asked if God would sent him to hell for what he did to Assef. Amir says Assef deserved it and Hassan would have been proud of Sohrab for saving Amir’s life. Sohrab is glad his parents can not see him because the sexual abuse he suffered makes him feel dirty and sinful. Amir tells Sohrab that he is not dirty nor sinful and asks him if he would like to live in America with him but Sohrab doesn’t give an answer. One afternoon he asks Amir what San Francisco is like and tells him that he is scared that him or his wife will get tired of him. Sohrab never wants to go back to an orphanage again. Amir promises that won’t happen and then after Sohrab agrees to go to America with him. Amir called Soraya to explain and then the next day called the American embassy but the man tells him that the adoption is almost impossible because without a death certificates, there is no way to prove Sohrab’s an orphan. He tells him that he should speak to Omar Faisal, an immigration attorney. Amir and Sohrab go to see Faisal the next day. He says it will be hard, but there are other options. He tells him that he can put Sohrab in an orphanage, file a petition, and then wait up to 2 years for the government to approve the adoption. That night Amir tells Sohrab he may have to go back to an orphanage but Sohrab screams and cries saying that they’ll hurt him. He cried until he fell asleep in Amir’s arms. While he sleeps, Amir calls Soraya who tells him that a family member names Sharif who works for the U.S. immigration department says there are ways to keep Sohrab in the country once he’s there. When Amir goes to tell Sohrab and finds him bleeding and unconscious in the bathtub.
Amir started to see blurry visions of a woman named Aisha, a man with the mustache, someone he recognizes while he goes in and out of consciousness. He wakes up and discovers he is in the hospital in Peshawar. The people he saw are doctors, and Farid was the man he recognized. Amir’s mouth is wired shut. His upper lit is split, the bone of his left eye socket broken, several of his ribs broken. Farid and Sohrab are there, and Amir thanks them both. Farid tells Amir that Rahim Khan has gone, but he left a note.
In his note, Rahim Khan says he knew everything that happened with Hassan and though what Amir did was wrong he was too hard on himself. He knows Amir suffered because of how Baba treated him, but baba did it for a reason. Baba couldn’t love Hassan openly so he felt guilty and took it out on Amir. But real good came from Baba’s remorse, Rahim Khan says. The orphanage Baba built, the poor that he fed, were his way of asking for forgiveness for himself. Rahim Khan also leaves Amir a key to a safe with money to cover Amir’s expenses. He has little time left he says, and Amir should not look for him. The next morning, Amir gives Farid the names of the American couple that runs the orphanage. Amir spends the day playing cards with Sohrab, who barely speaks. Amir decides Peshawar isn’t safe, and when Farid learns there never was an American couple to care for Sohrab, Amir leaves and takes Sohrab with him.
Amir and Farid arrive at the house where Amir will meet the Taliban official. While Farid waits in the car two guards lead Amir to the room where he is suppose to wait. The Taliban official enters with some guards and Amir and the official greet each other then one of the guards tear off Amir’s fake beard. The official asks Amir if he enjoyed the show at the stadium. Amir He said it wasn’t as good as when they went door to door shooting families in their homes. The official asked Amir was he was doing in America but Amirs only answer was that he was looking for Sohrab. Sohrab enters in a blue silk outfit, bells strapped around his ankles and mascara lining his eyes. The guards make Sohrab dance until the Taliban official orders them to leave. While the official rubs Sohrab’s stomach, he asks Amir whatever happened to old Babalu, a name Assef used to call Ali, and Amir then realizes that the Taliban official is actually Assef. Stunned, Amir says he will pay him for the boy. Assef replies that money is irrelevant and not why he joined the Taliban. He tells Amir he was once imprisoned, and one evening a guard began kicking him until the blows a kidney stone that had been causing him severe pain. He felt relief and began laughing. At that moment he knew God was on his side.
Amir says he wants Sohrab. Shoving Sohrab forward, Assef says he and Amir have unfinished business. Assef tells the guards that if Amir exits the room alive, he has earned the right to leave. Then Assef puts on a pair of brass knuckles. Amir remembers little after that. There are flashes of Assef hitting him and swallowing teeth and blood. Amir remembers laughing while Assef beat him, and feeling relief. He had looked forward to that, and felt healed for the first time. Sohrab told Assef to stop and held up his slingshot, and when Assef lunged at him, Sohrab fired, hitting him in the left eye. Sohrab and Amir ran out of the house to where Farid waited with the car. As they drove away, Amir passed out.
Farid drives Amir to Baba’s house but it had fallen apart. Amir finds his bedroom window and it starts to bring back old memories. He goes up the hill to the pomegranate tree where he and Hassan used to play, but Farid tells him they should leave. That night they stay at a dilapidated hotel. The next day they go to the soccer game at Ghazi Stadium. The field is just dirt and the crowd is careful not to cheer too loudly. At halftime, Talibans in red pickup trucks drive into the stadium. They unload a blindfolded man from one truck and a blindfolded woman. The woman is screaming uncontrollably.
A cleric on the field recites a prayer from the Quran (Muslim holy book). Another man steps out of a pickup, and Farid and Amir see it is the official they are looking for. He is wearing black sunglasses, as Zaman said. The official throws stones at the head of the man in the hole until his head is a bloody pulp and his chin hangs to his chest. Then he does the same to the woman. They pile the bodies into the back of a truck, and the second half of the soccer game begins. Farid tells one of the Taliban nearby that he has personal business with the official, and the official agrees to see them that afternoon.
On the way to Kabul Amir sees signs of the wars like broken takes and destroyed villages. When Amir and Farid reach Kabul, Amir does not recognize it. The trees are all gone. The Soviets cut them down because snipers would hide in them, and Afghans cut them down to use for firewood. Amir sees Talibans passing by, men with guns in pickup trucks.
Amir and Farid find the orphanage where they think Sohrab is but when they went to get him the director of the orphanage Zaman was scared and didn’t want to say Sohrab was there until Amir says he is his half-uncle. Zaman says Sohrab is not there, but he knows where he may be but it might en to late. Amir asks what he means, and Zaman tells him there is a Taliban official who comes every month or two. The official brings cash, and will sometimes take a child with him. Farid attacks Zaman for letting this happen but stopped once he saw children looking. Zaman said there is nothing he can do against the Taliban, and it is the only way to get money to feed the children. He tells Amir and Farid that the official took Sohrab a month ago. If they want to find him, he will be at Ghazi Stadium the next day.
In this chapter Amir walks from Rahim Khan’s house to a small teahouse. He kept thinking about how he was responsible for Hassan’s death. He also starts thinking about how baba was Hassan’s father and how. He starts to remember how Baba payed for the surgery to fix Hassan’s lip, and how he cried when Ali and Hassan left. Baba had said that theft was the only sin buy Amir feels that baba stole a brother from him from. Amir realizes that him and baba were more alike because they both betrayed their friends. On the ride back to Rahim Khan’s, Amir recognizes he is not too old to start fighting for himself, and that somewhere in Kabul, a small part of Hassan remains. He finds Rahim Khan praying and tells him he will find Sohrab.
Rahim Khan arranges for an acquaintance named Farid to take Amir to Kabul. Farid had children but has lost his two daughters and three fingers on his left hand to a land mine. Amir is dressed in an Afghan hat called a pakol and wears a fake beard that reaches down to his chest. Farid asks if after 20 in America, Amir still thinks of Afghanistan as his country. He guessed that Amir grew up in a large house with servants and that his father drove an American car. He points to an old man in ragged clothing and says that is the real Afghanistan.
They stop for the night at the home of Wahid which is Farid’s brother. The house was small with dirt walls and 2 laps for lighting. The three men sat down and talk, and Wahid asks Amir why he returned to Afghanistan. Farid said that Amir is probably coming to sell his land and run with the money back to America but Wahid snaps on Farid’s for insulting a guest in his home. Amir didn’t get insulted and says he should have explained earlier. He is going to find a Hazara boy, his half-brother, so that he can take him to Peshawar where people will take care of him. Wahid calls Amir a true Afghan and said that he is proud to have Amir stay in his home.
Wahid’s wife serves dinner to Farid and Amir but while Amir was eating he notices Wahid’s three boys staring at his wristwatch. So he gives the boys the watch as a gift. As Amir and Farid lie down to sleep, Farid says it was wrong of him to assume Amir’s reason for returning and says he was going to help Amir find the boy. That night, Amir had a dream of a man shooting Hassan but later realized he was the man in the dream. Amir goes outside because he thinks he hears 2 people. It was Wahid and his wife and they were arguing about dinner. Because they gave Amir their food, the children did not have any dinner. Amir realizes that the boys weren’t staring at his watch, they were staring at his food. The next morning, before Amir and Farid leave, Amir stuffs money under one of their mattresses.
The story begins to be told in first person. Rahim khan tells and the story of how he found Hassan.
In 1986 Rahim khan went to Hazarajay because he was lonely but also because baba’s house was becoming too much to take care of. When he went he wound Hassan’s home, it was a small mud house. He saw Hassan in the yard and they greeted each other. Hassan then introduced Rahim too Farzana, Hassan’s wife who is a pregnant Hazara woman. As they spoke, Hassan told Rahim that ali was killed by a landmine. Rahim told Hassan that he wanted him and Farzana to live in Baba’s house to help take care of it but Hassan declined because Hazarajat was now their home.
Hassan asked several questions about Amir. When he learned that baba has died Hassan cried. Later that night Rahim stayed the night and when they woke up the next morning Hassan told him they would come back to Kabul with him.
Hassan and Farzana lived in the small servant hurt out of respect and Hassan would clean and prepare the house. That fall Farzana gave birthday but they baby didn’t make it so they had buried it in the yard.
Farzana becomes pregnant again in 1990 and that same year Hassan’s mother Sanaubar appeared at the front gates. She was weak with cuts all over her face. Farzana and Hassan helped her which made her and Hassan become closer. That winter Hassan’s mother delivered Farzanas son Sohrab.
In 1996 the Taliban take over Kabul and two weeks later ban kite fighting.
The story goes back to amr and Rahim sitting down talking.
Amir asks if Hassan is still at Baba’s house. Rahim hands him an envelope that contains a picture and a letter for Amir. In the letter Hassan tells amr how the Kabul they use to know is gone and how one day a man at the market hit Farzana simply because she raised her voice so a half deaf man could hear her. He also talks about his live for his son. Rahim says a month after arriving to Pakistan he received a phone call from a neighbour in Kabul. The Taliban had gone to baba’s house and found Hassan and his family there. Hassan told them he was taking care of the house for a friend but they didn’t believe him and said he was a liar like all the Hazaras. They made him kneel in the street and they shot him in the head. Farzana ran out of the house and they shot her too then the Taliban moved into Baba’s house and Sohrab was sent to an orphanage
The news to Amir didn’t just mean her lost his friend forever but that he would never get to apologize for nr stopping the rape or lying about stealing his birthday money.
Going to Kabul becomes a test for Amir but he can’t let Sohrab be abandoned. He knows the city is extremely dangerous r and by returning there he would risk everything.
Rahim knew the decision would be hard so he brings up a conversation he once had with baba, when he said he feared Amir would not be able to stand up for himself as a man if he couldn’t stand up for himself as a boy. Then Rahim says that Ali was not hassan’s father and says Hassan was Baba’s child making Amir and Hassan half brothers and Sohrab Amir’s nephew.
The story jumps to the year 2001 when Amir reviewed a call from Rahim khan. Rahim is ill and wants to see Amir in Pakistan. Amir tells Soraya and a week later he leaves to Pakistan. Once Amir lands in Peshawar the cab driver talks to him about what’s happening in Afghanistan and how horrible it is.
They reach a neighboring old called “afghan town” and Amir realizes the extent of what has happened to the people of Afghanistan and what has destroyed Kabul. He starts remembering the last time he saw Rahim khan which was 20 years ago when baba left Kabul. Baba and Rahim kept in touch but Amir had not spoken to him since Baba’s death.
When Amir arrived at Rahims house he saw how thin and sick he looked. They sat down and Amir told him about Soraya and how he is a novelist now. They then started talking about what happened to Afghanistan since the Taliban took over. Rahim tells Amir the story behind the scar on his eye. A man was cheering loudly at a soccer game next to Rahim when a guard patrol heard the noise so he walked over and smashed him with the rifle.
Rahim had been living in Baba’s house in Kabul since 1981, when baba and Amir left. He took care of it expecting baba to return.
Kabul became dangerous as the afghans caught for control of the city. Rahim says the alliance ruined the city more the sharawi did. By alliance he refers to different non-Pashtun ethnic groups.
Rahim starts to cough up blood and Amir asks how well his is. He doesn’t think he’ll make it to summer. He wanted to see Amir that’s why he asked him there but he also wanted something else. While living in Baba’s home he has Hassan with him and before telling Amir the favor he had to talk about Hassan.