The use of the first-person narrator in The Kite Runner

An author makes a critical decision when choosing the narrative perspective from which a story will be told.  One type of point of view is no better or worse than another, the decision is based on what the author wants to communicate to the reader.  The first person narrator is often used in novels. This is where the author uses the word “I” to give the impression that the character, not the author, is telling the story. It engages the reader, gives eye witness immediacy to the story and controls the point of view. However, the narrator must have witnessed the events being told and this may lead to bias.

The first person retrospective narrator gives dual perspective – the adult and the younger self. The narrator has the benefit of hindsight and maturity, and can offer insight and judgment on their earlier experiences.

The first person narrative perspective of Amir allows the reader to really get into his thoughts and feelings regarding his family and his feelings about betraying Hassan.  One of the major themes of the novel is about personal redemption, and the reader walks through this journey as Amir battles with trying to atone for his past mistakes.  If the point of view changes, the events of the story might very well be the same, but the reader would lose the inner connection with Amir.

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