Tuesday, December 23, 2008

An Interview with Khaled Hosseini

Okay, so it's not OUR interview, pout, but B&N was gracious enough to share.

Khaled Hosseini: A conversation with James Mustich, Editor-in-Chief, Barnes & Noble Review

Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1965. At the age of 11, he moved to Paris with his family as a result of his father's diplomatic posting to the French capital by the Afghan Foreign Service. Four years later, unable to return home because of the Soviet invasion, the Hosseini family was granted political asylum in the United States and moved to San Jose, California, where the future author pursued his high school education. He subsequently enrolled in Santa Clara University, earning a Biology degree before attending the University of California at San Diego's School of Medicine. He spent seven years as a practicing internist before the publication of his first novel, The Kite Runner, in 2003.

A phenomenal bestseller in both hardcover and paperback, The Kite Runner was adapted for the screen in 2007; that year also saw the appearance of Hosseini's acclaimed second novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns. With the latter book's first paperback publication imminent, I spoke with Hosseini by telephone at the end of October. What follows is an edited transcript of our conversation. -- James Mustich

JM: Although you were raised in a culture in which there was not a strong tradition of the novel, your two books embrace, it seems to me, the fundamentally empathetic imagination of the form, telling stories that broaden the reach of our own passions and sentiments by allowing us to identify with the emotions and experience of others outside of our familiar circumstances. Does the tradition of the novel tell us anything about a culture's sense of itself?

KH: I don't know. Both of my novels -- certainly the first one, which is a kind of coming-of-age story -- are far more influenced by my American experience than by my Afghan experience. I think we're going to see more and more writers from my native country embrace this form, rather than poetry, to write about their society and the things that shaped it, especially writers who live in exile and who have been exposed, as I have ...

Read the rest here.


Ane Mulligan said...

Interesting interview. Thanks for finding and posting it, Gina. How wonderful he was able to come, here where he can write in total freedom.