Novelist Khaled Hosseini began life as a privileged young Afghan. The son of a diplomat and a teacher, he was born in Kabul and spent the first decade of his childhood in Afghanistan before moving to Paris and then to California, where he still lives.
“People write to me from virtually every corner of the world, and for many of them, Afghanistan prior to 9/11 was sort of this anonymous place,” Hosseini, 47, says by phone. After the terrorist attacks, the country of his birth was perceived to be “essentially synonymous with a decade of war, the opium trade, and the Taliban. That’s really all that people thought of.”