The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini - Biography

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini Menu
Khaled Hosseini – BIOGRAPHY

Khaled Hosseini was born on March 4, 1965. He is the oldest of five children. His father worked for the Afghan Foreign Consul and his mother taught Farsi and history at a girls’ high school in Kabul.

Kabul, Afghanistan is the boyhood home of Khaled Hosseini, as it is for his protagonist, Amir. He also incorporates in his story the same time period in which he, the author, grew up – the 1960s through the present day.

In the early 1970s, Khaled’s family moved to Tehran, Iran when his father was assigned to a diplomatic post at the Afghan Embassy in Iran. They returned home to Kabul in 1973. In 1976 his family moved to Paris, France, where his father was a diplomat at the Afghan Embassy. They were to return home to Afghanistan in 1980, when the Russians invaded his country. His father was recalled home after the invasion, but decided to ask for political asylum in the United States and received it.

As a result, Hosseini ended up in San Jose, California. They struggled to make ends meet for a while, as they had lost all of their property in Afghanistan and had to start over. His father worked many jobs and they were able to get back on their feet.

Khaled graduated from high school in 1984. He then graduated from Santa Clara University with a bachelor’s degree in Biology in 1988. He attended medical school at the UC San Diego School of Medicine, specializing in internal medicine. He received his medical degree in 1993 and completed his residency training at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. Since 1996 he has practiced as a physician and is now married with a son and a daughter, Haris and Farah. They now live in northern California.

He begain working on the The Kite Runner in 2001 and finished it in 2002. He found a literary agent and the novel was published in 2003. The Kite Runner is his first novel and he is working on another story set in Afghanistan, told from the perpective of an Afghan woman.

Hosseini has stated that he was partly inspired by his own relationship with Hossein Khan, a cook that worked for his family, who was from the rugged mountains of central Afghanistan. When Khaled was a young boy, he and this man became good friends and while just a third-grader, he taught Hossein Khan how to read and write. Khaled was happy to have helped this man and says that he still thinks of him everytime he sees an alphabet book. Khaled later realized how social injustice and bias can be cruel and can make life more difficult for people just because of their race or upbringing–even when they share your roof.

Awards for The Kite Runner: 

Barnes and Noble Discover Great new Writers Selection 2003
Borders Original Voices Award, 2003