external image hosseini_khlaled.jpg


Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1965. His father was a diplomat in the Afghan Foreign Ministry and his mother taught history in a high school. He briefly lived in Tehran and then returned to Kabul. In July 1973, the Afghan king was overthrown in a coup. Khaled was in fourth grade and had developed a deep love of poetry. He read a lot of Persian poetry as well as novels such as Alice in Wonderland. In 1976 the Foreign Ministry relocated his family to Paris. By the time they returned to Afghanistan in 1980, the Soviets had taken control of the country. To escape these conditions, Khaled’s family sought refuge in the U.S and soon moved to California.

Khaled attended school in California and attended Santa Clara University, studying biology. He then enrolled himself in the University of California-San Diego School of Medicine, earning a medical degree in 1993. He began practicing internal medicine in 1996. Even though he loves his medical career, writing is his passion.

Khaled always remembered pre-Soviet Afghanistan with fondness and his memories of that time are reflected in his writing. He is married to Roya Hosseini and they have two children, Haris and Farah.


Khaled Hosseini basically writes historical fiction, based in Afghanistan. His book Kite Runner takes place in Kabul, and references the blatant class differences in Afghanistan. The book talks about the soviet invasion of Afghanistan and the devastation that followed, as well as the mass exodus of refugees. Also included is the rise of the Taliban regime.
Kite Runner in particular follows the growth of a young boy from childhood until adulthood. Hassan, a Hazara servant of Amir's, helped Amir in his Kite Running contests. One day after a race, Hassan was raped while defending Amir’s kite from a bully. When Amir accidentally comes upon the rape he keeps quite and says nothing about it. In the story, Amir betrays his best friend Hassan, because he feels that since Hassan is a servant his feelings don’t really matter. Out of jealousy and shame he frames Hassan of theft to get rid of him in his life. Years later, while living a successful life in California he receives a call from his mentor asking him to return to Pakistan. Here he learns that Hassan was killed by the Taliban after refusing to give up his job. Amir learns that Hassan was really his half-brother, and is asked to go and rescue Hassan’s orphaned son. He agrees to return to Taliban ruled Kabul and rescues Sohrab, the son. After a few struggles with paperwork, and near tragedies, he successfully returns to America with him. Sohrab is so emotionally scarred that he is closed off for some time. Towards the end of the book he warms up to Amir slightly, and they reminisce about his father, and begin to fly kites together.

Khaled's Life in Relation to the Kite Runner:

The plot of The Kite Runner is based off of Khaled's childhood experiences in Afghanistan. The main characters and the events of his novel relate directly to people and things he has experienced. He shares the happy times of Afghanistan's past, as opposed to the harsh tales that others tell. He writes about Afghan people, their traditions and their culture that he himself has taken part in. He also tells about the beginning of the anxiety of political unrest in the country and the evasive actions many of the citizens had to take to escape. He also relates the main character, Amir, to himself by giving him a gift for writing. Amir had to evacuate Afghanistan when the Soviets started their invasion exactly as Khaled and his family had to in 1976. The Kite Runner could be considered an indirect autobiography of Khaled's early life.

Esten, Hugh. "Khaled Hosseini." Academy of Achievement. 24 Sep 2008. Academy of Achievement. 26 May 2009 <>.

Khaled Hosseini 1965-. Infotrac. Access Power Library. MASH. Meadville Media Center. 27 May 2009

"The Kite Runner." Khaled Hosseini Books. 2007. 28 May 2009 <>.

Alissa Carter
Adina Hilton
Caitlin McGrath
Allison Shafer