Archive for February, 2006

Caleb Hossini, ‘The kite runner’

The Kite RunnerTrish hosted Caleb Hossini’s “The kite runner”.

well we had possibly our longest talk about a book ever. the discussion began with the kite runner and amir’s moral choices compared with those of his father. quite a few coming down on the side of dad.

we quickly moved on to the characters and their relationships, and whilst everyone gave the book a ringing endorsement, largely due to its power and believability, a few of us got nit picky about a couple of the characters. in particular that hassan and ali were painted as untainted saints in the same way that assef was painted as an unredeemable monster.

apart from this blemish everyone seemed to have been transported by the book into the world of the afghan emigre, and the experience of trauma, exile, return, more trauma and questionable redemption.

being based in afghanistan it lead us into the world of the key contemporary issues of tolerance and relative values. in that world we had a great conversation that rolled over the cultural and religious terrain of afghanistan, iraq, and cronulla – a sydney suburb where a there was a a riot between anglo and arab australians in xmas05.

this terrain ended in the muddy waters of religion. we got stuck in the deep, friendly and familiar swamp of our religious and irreligious upbringings for a long time.

we got so lost in the lowlands of religion including freedom of speech, bringing up children, evangelising and the power of priests of all kinds, that we did not even move on to our usual subject of nsw politics. the only thing that got us to move on from religion was food.

food forced us to stand up, change venues (to the table) and change the subject – back to the book as it happens. so khaleb hosseini was a big success. like everyone i thought the book was great but i think i enjoyed the bookgroup discussion even more than the book.

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February 19, 2006 at 8:11 am Leave a comment


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