Baba has been far from a perfect father in The Kite Runner. In his own mind, his plans for his son, Amir, have not panned out. He wishes Amir to be big, strong and physically imposing--like Baba. However, Amir turns out to be an introspective boy intent upon becoming a writer. Baba is not impressed with Amir's writing skills, nor does he pay much attention when Amir wins the kite-flying tournament. Amir comes to realize that there is little he can do to impress his father.
When Amir believes that Hassan is receiving too much attention from Baba, he plants evidence to make Hassan appear guilty of theft. Ali, Hassan's father and Amir's lifelong friend/servant, packs up and leaves with Hassan. Amir's plan backfires, however; he loses his closest companion, feels guilt for the rest of his life, and becomes even more distant from his father. After their move to California, the father and son relationship improves dramatically until Amir discovers the secret that Baba has been hiding from him: Hassan is actually Baba's son--not Ali's--and the two boys are actually half-brothers. This further complicates Amir's emotional state and state of mind, and he determines that the only way for him to seek redemption and improve his state of mind that is so unsettled by Baba is to return to Afghanistan and retrieve Hassan's son--Amir's nephew--from the hands of the Taliban.