Last year I read The Kite Runner and loved the book (I never did see the movie, but heard it was also very good). It was well written, and very poignant. I have just finished a second book by the same author, Khaled Hosseini, "A Thousand Splendid Suns" and have enjoyed it even more than The Kite Runner. It has given me a whole new perspective on Afghanistan and the suffering of the people there - the devastation that war brings on all who experience it first hand. This book is set in modern times, beginning in the 1970's and ending in the year 2003.
I highly recommend this book as one which you will find hard to put down once you begin reading - it definitely is worth reading just to gain a new perspective on the lives of others in different parts of the world.