Khaled Hosseini Biography


  • Khaled Hosseini is born in Kabul in 1965 and is the oldest of five children. His father is a diplomat for the Afghan Foreign Ministry, and his mother is a high school teacher.
  • Hosseini has a childhood friend who is a Shi'a Muslim, and Hosseini grow up in a comfortable existence, loving American movies and flying kites.
  • In grade school, Hosseini begins writing short stories.
  • Hosseini and his family are living in Paris when the Russian invasion of Afghanistan takes place in 1980, so instead of returning to Kabul, they are granted political asylum and move to San Jose.
  • The immigrant experience in The Kite Runner is autobiographical, based on the difficulties that Hosseini and his parents experience in California.
  • In 1984, Hosseini graduates from high school, having become fluent in English by this time. Putting his personal aspirations of becoming a writer on hold, Hosseini decides to pursue medicine. In 1989, he graduates from Santa Clara University with a bachelor's degree in biology and graduates from UC San Diego School of Medicine in 1993.
  • He has a three-year residency in internal medicine at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, and then works as an internist for three years in Los Angeles.
  • Hosseini returns to northern California in 1999, where he joins a branch of the Kaiser Permanente Medical Group. At this time, he also returns to writing short stories, some of which are published in various literary magazines.
  • One short story, started in 1997 and also called "The Kite Runner," is rejected by The New Yorker, Atlantic Monthly, and Esquire. Four years later, Hosseini expands the short story into his first novel.
  • Hosseini returns to Kabul in 2003, just weeks before the official publication date of The Kite Runner.
  • The Kite Runner earns a number of popular and critical awards, including the Borders Original Voice Award, the San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of the Year Award, and the South African Boeke Prize.
  • In 2006, Hosseini is named a goodwill envoy to UNHCR, the United Nations Refugee Agency.
  • His second novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns, is published in 2007.
  • A film version of The Kite Runner opens in 2007 to mixed critical reviews and is currently available on DVD.
  • Hosseini is currently on an open-ended sabbatical from practicing medicine to focus on his writing. In addition to writing novels, he has expressed interest in writing a screenplay, a stage play, and more short stories.