Finished The Kite Runner last night. The title refers to an Afghan pasttime where youths will have kite fights where the string of their kites are laced with glass and they try to cut down the kites of their opponents. When a kite is cut down, everyone who doesn't have a kite in the air runs to try to recover the fallen kite. The one who finds it gets to keep it as a prize, the spoils.
The novel is fairly brutal and heartbreaking. It begins just before the Russians invaded Afghanistan in the 70's and ends just after 9/11. It is a story of a friendship, regret, of Afghanistan, of the loss of a friendship and a last chance to find some sort of redemption for that regret. This is a work of fiction, but if Hosseini had said this was a true story I would believe him. It feels realistic, even with some events that are just a little bit absurd. Everything works and the deeper I got into the book the more I liked it and the more I was absorbed into the story.