The Kite Runner Summary
Khaled Hosseini

Everything you need to understand or teach The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.

  • The Kite Runner Summary & Study Guide
  • 1 Student Essay
  • ...and more
  • 30 The Kite Runner Lessons
  • 20 Activities
  • 180 Multiple Choice Questions
  • 60 Short Essay Questions
  • 20 Essay Questions
  • Pre-Made Tests and Quizzes
  • ...and more
Follow Us on Facebook

The Kite Runner Summary

As the story opens, Amir is a young boy living with his widowed father and their servants, Ali and Hassan. Hassan and Amir are the same age and have been raised together from birth, both without their mothers. Amir desperately wants his father’s approval and affection and is jealous of the attention his father pays to Hassan. It’s not until he’s an adult and his father is dead that Amir learns that Hassan is actually his half-brother. Amir recalls his father teaching him a person who lies is worse than any thief because it robs a person of the right to know the truth. When Amir learns the truth about Hassan’s birth, he feels even more betrayed because he had believed that his father was above such deceit.

Amir and Hassan are close friends though Hassan is always aware of the limitations because of his station in life. When Amir has other friends available, Hassan is not invited to play. When Amir is preparing for school, Hassan prepares Amir’s breakfast and school clothes. When Amir wins a kite tournament, Hassan runs to the place he knows the kite will land. Known for his ability to predict the precise landing spot, Amir knows Hassan will return with the kite. Having that kite is a great honor in Amir’s culture and he knows he will earn his father’s praise for having won the tournament. Amir follows Hassan and discovers that Hassan is in an alley, surrounded by a group of neighborhood bullies, including a boy named Assef. Amir doesn’t intervene but watches as the boys hold Hassan down while Assef rapes him. Amir waits some time and lies about the situation, pretending he hadn’t seen anything. Over the coming weeks, Amir’s inner turmoil grows and he tells his father that Hassan stole a watch. Hassan and Ali leave the household.

War threatens the country and Amir and his father manage to escape to America. Their lives are difficult but they survive. Eventually, Amir marries and his father dies of cancer. Then Amir hears from his father’s old friend, Rahim Khan, who is very ill. Amir travels overseas to see him and learns the truth about his biological relationship to Hassan. He also learns that Hassan and his wife were murdered by soldiers. Their son, Sohrab, is living in an orphanage and Rahim Khan tells Amir he has to get the boy out of the country. Having never overcome the guilt of his failure to run to Hassan’s aid, Amir heads back to his childhood home.

There he finds that Sohrab has been taken captive by a cruel soldier. Amir finds the man and learns that it’s Assef. Assef agrees that he and Amir will fight with the winner taking Sohrab. Assef beats Amir to a bloody pulp but Sohrab intervenes, hitting Assef in the eye with a brass ball fired from a slingshot. While Assef is writhing in agony, Sohrab and Amir escape. Amir begins trying to figure out a way to get Sohrab into the United States and comes to the conclusion that Sohrab will have to spend some time in an orphanage before he can make the trip. Sohrab is so fearful of returning to the orphanage that he tries to kill himself.

Meanwhile, Amir’s wife has called in some favors with the immigration services and Sohrab is allowed to travel to the United States. Months pass and he remains fearful of trusting the new situation or his adoptive parents. One day Amir buys a kite and tells Sohrab that his father, Hassan, had been the most talented kite runner of all times,earning a smile that Amir hopes will be the beginning of a new life for Sohrab.

(read more from the Study Guide)

Study Pack

The The Kite Runner Study Pack contains about 60 pages of study material in 2 products, including:

The Kite Runner Study Guide

Lesson Plan

All teaching products sold separately.

The Kite Runner Lesson Plans contain 111 pages of teaching material, including: