The Knife of Never Letting Go

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

This book was recommended to me by my friend Katie.  She’s a elementary school librarian and I often ask her for recommendations of young adult literature.  Last summer she turned me on to The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins.  [I absolutely love and recommend those books.  Collins is really a brilliant writer!]  When I visited her recently, I told her I was looking for something like Hunger Games and she steered me toward this book.

This is also the first of a post-apocalyptic trilogy for young adults/teens.  The story centers around a boy of 12 who is just a month away from his 13th birthday when he will officially become a man.  Todd is a human settler to New World, a planet very much like Earth, but with two moons and a curious “germ” that makes all persons able to hear the thoughts or “Noise” of others.  Todd’s life is changed when he encounters a silence in the Noise.  To tell you much else will reveal to much of the plot.

The Knife of Never Letting Go is an action packed journey across New World.  It was enjoyable, but not quite as great as The Hunger Games.  Ness’s plot is at times overly complex and his characters lack the depth of Collins’s Katniss or Peeta.  Despite these failings, the concept is good.  Ness intends, at least from what I’ve read, his book to comment on the pervasiveness of information and communication in our own culture.   For the profundity of asking this question alone, I would recommend you read the book.  I will caution that the book, like The Hunger Games Trilogy, is violent.

Overall this is one I’m glad I read, will probably not re-read, and do recommend.

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