Monday, April 23, 2007

The Kite Runner...

If you haven't heard of this phrase before, I'd rather that you don't read this post. Most of my readers are aware of my reading habits (If you don't, better try not to !) and the genre of books that I read. The *only* investment on books that I made in the past two months are on a classic by Dickens (The Pickwick papers) and 'The Kite Runner' by Hosseini. Modern writing is something that I am wary of after several lessons sponsored by Dan Brown and Adrian D'Hage. After deliberating quite a sizable time within myself I finally decided to buy 'The kite runner' for a sum of Rs.350. At the outset, I would say that it wasnt a bad investment...The Kite runner is certainly not of the class of Ayn Rand, but I would dare to say that it was remarkably lucid and pacey. It had the right blend which would suit all kinds of readers, not too bland yet not too grotesque.

The story line is based on the sands of Afghanistan, and Hosseini does full justice to his nativity but depicting a remarkably sketched lifestyle typical to that place. The entire script is in first-person which makes the transition of the reader into the character more easier. The narrator essays his life with occasional allusions to the future. Though the hero is the narrator, he eulogizes his friend with all the affable characteristics. The narrator is the son of a rich Afghan who has lost his mother in child-birth and his friend is subjugate to their family by nature of his birth and position. The author gives a vivid description of the mind of young kids with all its joy and aberrations. The author has packed in a couple of unexpected turns to the story. The narrator consistently projects himself as a person lacking in bravery and with quite a number of other detrimental qualities that we can identify with a 'normal' person. His friend on the other hand is a simpleton who is ready to stand in and protect his master-friend.

A kite tournament brings about a sad turn of events where the fear factor prevents the narrator from helping his friend. The friend happens to have an amazing ability to judge the aerodynamics of a kite and thereby able to 'run-down'(retrieve) a battle lost kite, hence the title 'The kite runner'. The narrator thereby loses his friend and his peace of mind for the most part of his life. He is forced by the ravages of war in Afghanistan to flee the place and seek refuge in the US. He and his once Royal father are forced to build a life from the scratch. The rest of the story deals with how the narrator manages to refurbish his long lost peace of mind.

The author has very clearly captured the state of a disturbed mind, a mind which has to reconcile with a conscious choice of cowardice taken which had etched an irrevocable and indelible mark on the future. He has been able to streamline the chain of actions that would flow out of such a mind. The author has given an honest attempt at raking up the emotions from within the reader, and I should say that he has fairly succeeded in doing so. The later half of the story can be appreciated if the reader becomes miscible with the narrator and steps into his mental-shoe while we read it. The story is so remarkable written that there is no redundant drags in it, it achieves what it was meant to achieve...touch the reader's heart. There are the right mix of emotions that usually accompanies a novel, repentance and soberness are in ample. The way the author has essayed the 'happiness of atonement' is simply astonishing. When I finished reading, all I could feel was
'I ran.......'

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