I’m one brought easily to tears when reading a good story or watching a touching movie. Last week I read Khaled  Hosseini’s The Kite Runner out loud to my wife, Lucia. I must have cried on at least twenty separate occasions during the course of the book, setting a personal tear drop record. Lucia burst into tears many times as well.

The Kite Runner reads like a historical novel aka James Mitchener or Leon Uris, despite the fact the events described only go back to the late 1960s. Although the story is vastly different from Colleen McCullough’s Australian-set saga, The Thornbirds, The Kite Runner has a similar ability to reach deeply into the heart and soul of the reader.

Set in Afghanistan, Pakistan and California, The Kite Runner follows the lives of two boys, best friends, growing up in Kabul in the 60s and 70s, The depth of tragedy they encounter and the love and dedication required by the narrator, Amir, to right the wrongs and lies of their past makes for gripping, hugely moving and inspiring narrative.

Hosseini’s immense skill as a writer – his grasp of metaphor and his ability to tie seemingly disparate events into a cohesive whole – is truly masterful. This is a highly recommended read for anyone wishing to better understand the recent turmoil in Afghanistan and the beauty of Islam and Sufism. The Kite Runner is one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. I look forward to diving into more from Khaled Hosseini in the years to come.

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Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.