What you need to know about Khaled Hosseini and his works

By Krishnan

Khaled Hosseini, The Author

Khaled Hosseini, an Afghan-American author, UNHCR goodwill ambassador, and former physician, was born on March 4, 1965, in Kabul, Afghanistan. His father worked as an Afghan diplomat in the Afghan Foreign Ministry, and his mother was a high school teacher who taught Farsi and History in a big Kabul school. When Hosseini’s father received transfer orders from the foreign ministry in 1976, the family relocated to Paris. In 1980, the family decided against going back to Kabul due to the terrible circumstances there following the Soviet army invasion. Instead, they applied for refugee status in the United States. In September 1980, after receiving refuge, they relocated to San Jose, California.

Khaled graduated from Independence High School in 1984 and enrolled at Santa Clara University to study Biology. He completed his bachelor’s degree in Biology in 1988 and then went on to the University of California-San Diego School of Medicine, where he earned his medical degree in 1993. Hosseini became a doctor and practised medicine between the years 1996 and 2004 after completing an internal medicine residency at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. In 2001, he was earning a career as a doctor when he got the idea for writing The Kite Runner and started writing it.

The Kite Runner was released in 2003 and instantly became an international best-seller. The book was released in 70 nations, but not in Afghanistan. The novel is primarily a work of fiction, even though some parts are based on Hossein’s youth. According to Nielsen BookScan, The Kite Runner became the third-best-selling book in the United States in 2005. Additionally, an audiobook version featuring Hosseini’s voice was also made. The novel The Kite Runner was adapted into a film in 2007 with the same name. Hosseini made a cameo appearance in a sequence near the film’s climax as a bystander.

The relationship between a mother and daughter is the major focus of Hosseini’s second book, A Thousand Splendid Suns, compared to The Kite Runner, which mostly centres on relationships between a father and son. It carries over some of the subjects from his previous novel, such as family relationships. The only difference is it places more of an emphasis on the female characters and their lives in modern Afghan culture. After receiving excellent reviews from various sources, the novel was published across 60 countries and became the number one New York Times Best Seller fifteen weeks after its debut. Producer Scott Rudin and Columbia Pictures have bought the novel’s rights and are planning to adapt it into a film.

Hosseini’s love for his nation of birth is obvious in all of his works because both of his books are based on the happenings of his nation. He displays his passion for Afghanistan through his involvement in development there. Hosseini has been a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Refugee Agency, UNHCR, since 2006. Aside from The Khaled Hosseini Foundation, which offers humanitarian relief in Afghanistan, his official website also gives information on and links to several other aid groups supporting the country. After Hosseini’s 2007 visit to Afghanistan, the foundation was set up. Hosseini was distraught to learn about the state of his birthplace after visiting for the first time in 27 years.

Khaled Hosseini, who interviewers described as smart, clever, and beautiful, was named the most famous Afghan in the world by Time Magazine. He resides in Northern California with his wife, Roya and their two kids.

Here are the best works of Khaled Hosseini

The Kite Runner (2003)

The Kite Runner, published by Riverhead Books in 2003, is the debut novel of Afghan-American novelist Khaled Hosseini. The Kite Runner spans several generations and focuses on the bond between parents and their children. After being released in paperback, The Kite Runner became a best-seller and gained popularity among reading groups. With almost seven million copies sold in the US, it spent more than two years on the New York Times bestseller list. It was prohibited in Afghanistan because of several controversial elements. The novel The Kite Runner was adapted into a film in 2007 with the same name. Hosseini made a cameo appearance in a sequence near the film’s climax as a bystander.

Summary: The Kite Runner tells the story of Amir, a Sunni Muslim, struggling to find his place in the world due to the consequences of a series of horrific childhood experiences.

A Thousand Splendid Suns (2007)

A Thousand Splendid Suns is a novel written by Afghan-American novelist Khaled Hosseini in 2007, following the tremendous success of his bestselling debut, The Kite Runner, in 2003. The focus of Hosseini’s second book is the bond between a mother and daughter. The sole change is that it puts more attention on the female characters and their lives in everyday Afghan society. It retains some of the themes from his earlier book, such as family relationships. 

Over a million copies of the novel were sold in its first week of sales. It garnered a lot of good reviews from Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, Library, and other leading publications, and it went on to become the number one New York Times Best Seller list fifteen weeks after its publication.

Summary: The novel A Thousand Splendid Suns are divided into four parts. Part 1 narrates the narrative of Mariam, a young Afghan girl born in the 1950s. Part 2 tells the story of Laila, who was born in Kabul in the late 1970s. In Part 3, the lives of the two ladies intersect. Part 4 is presented from Laila’s point of view. 

And the Mountains Echoed (2013)

And the Mountains Echoed, released by Riverhead Books in 2013, is Khaled Hosseini’s third novel. Choosing not to concentrate on any particular character differs from Hosseini’s style in his previous two books. The book is instead written as a series of short stories, with each of the book’s nine chapters telling the story from the viewpoint of a different character.

Summary: A farmer who works tirelessly to provide for his family is compelled to turn one of his five kids over to an evil giant. When he and his wife make a random selection, their favourite son ends up being the unfortunate one.

Those who love realistic and deep reading will love the works of Khaled Hosseini. We recommend you read them.

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