Monday, December 08, 2008

The Kite Runner

Khaled Hosseini has won me over with his first novel, "The Kite Runner". He is, in my books (pun intended), one of today's phenomenal story tellers and I say it without exaggeration. I couldn't put the book down and read it, from cover to cover (with minimal sleep) in 3 days because I was so eager to find out where the events would lead.

Reading the novel is like opening a door to Afghanistan's history and culture, that in itself is already a devastating story to start with. The novel tells the story of Amir's childhood in Kabul with Baba (his father), Ali (servant), Hassan (Ali's son) and Rahim Khan (Baba's friend who, to Amir's eyes, understands him more than Baba).

Amir recollects the painful events he has caused Hassan's (his kite runner) family; his desire for Baba's complete attention and approval; his jealousy over Baba's affection on Hassan; Hassan's courage, Rahim Khan's endearing presence and his search for redemption.

I don't really want to say more about the story as I might be revealing too much to spoil it (spoiler alert here).

There are numerous materials available online of and about the novel. I'm downloading the movie and the audiobook right now as these contents were not available at the time I've read the book. But if you haven't read the book yet, go get a copy. If you have, well then get Hosseini's second novel, "A Thousand Splendid Suns".

The story, "The Kite Runner", reminds me of my childhood -the '80s to '90s (yeah!!!) with my cousins. At that time, although we have gaming consoles like Nintendo Family Computer, Game n' Watches, joy sticks games, the games of choice are the really tiring 'It Games' like Tumbang Preso, Pepsi 7-Up, Touch the Color, Monkey Monkey, Langit Lupa, Pussy Cat Pussy Cat, and etc. I can go on on in this list of games. (I will, just you wait! LOL). We get repremanded to play around the time dinner is ready (yes, the time when the entire family eats together) and disobedience means a beating(LOL). Only when we are sent home do we really play with the gaming consoles.

Games back then were more DIY. We used to make and fly our own kites in our backyard with walis ting-ting, pastic grocerybags and our lola's sewing thread (hahahahaha). We make our own bubble fun in numerous fashion depending on the availability of the materials needed and where the modus operandi will take place. If we were out in the garden, we would crush gumamela leaves and flowers to a slimy paste and add water sometimes adding manang's detergent for maximum effect and a looped walis ting ting or hallow papaya leaf stalk, when in the bathroom with cousins, we just dab a tiny amount of Johnson's Baby Shampoo on our lips and start blowing and then weeeeEEE! We do get in trouble a lot and get a scolding from Manang because sometimes we use too much detergent for our bubble fun and the mysterious thinning of the walis ting ting.

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