Review: The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

Synopsis: Todd Hewitt is a month away from leaving boyhood behind in a town made up entirely of men. The women were all killed, years ago, by a virus that also cursed the men with what the town calls Noise. Plagued by this Noise, which makes every thought you think an audible one for the rest of the world to hear, the silence Todd finds in the woods outside of town is kind of a big deal. When the secret of the silence comes out, as everything eventually does with Noise, Todd is forced to run away as the town comes for him. Running for their lives, Todd, a new friend, and his dog find a world that will make Todd question everything he has ever been told.

Review: I have mixed feelings about this one. I’ve heard such good things about this series, and so I was excited to pick it up. However, I’m afraid it may have been over-hyped for me.

First, it took me some time to get into this world. The language threw me off at first, because it wasn’t what I was expecting. Todd is uneducated, and this comes across in his narration. Words are misspelled often, and the narration reads like how you would expect a young uneducated boy to speak. Once I got used to this, it was fine, but I think it made the story a bit hard to get into at first.

Second, once I did get into this world, I was quickly disappointed by the lack of knowledge given to the reader. There were times in which Todd would find things out, things that were crucial to the story, but that he would not share with the reader. This annoyed me to no end. If you’re going to put readers into an unknown world, please do not keep relevant information longer than you have to. It perhaps would not have been that bad, except for when readers are told the truth of things, it seems so anticlimactic. When I was told the big “plot twist” at one of the final confrontations, I was unimpressed. Why was this something I could not have been told earlier? This was a problem multiple times throughout the book.

Third, you may have noticed I said “one of the final confrontations.” Towards the end of the book, it seems like the characters just can’t catch a break. By the end, you’re left with a feeling of horror, because literally nothing good comes out of the last 50 pages or so of the book. It was one thing after another, and though I’m all for putting your characters through horrible situations, this was just excessive.

Fourth, there is a character, that no matter how many encounters, no matter how many fights, and no matter how badly he seems to be hurt, will simply not die. It’s ridiculous. I swear, the amount of times this dude came back into the story after being nearly slaughtered was just plain absurd.

With all of this being said, I did find myself enjoying parts of the book. I wanted to know more about the world and the characters. Finding out the truth of the situation is the driving force that kept me reading. This will probably be what leads me to buy the next book, as so much of what was set up to be answered in this book was not answered.

I give points for the story idea, which was not what I expected when I started, and that actually had some underlying conflicts that I hope will be explored further in the rest of the series.

It was worth the read, though some of the major aspects of the book annoyed me. I plan on eventually getting the second book, but if many of my complaints are still present in the second, I don’t know if I will be picking up the third.

I would recommend this book for those who like science fiction or thrillers.



2.5 out of 5 Cups of Tea

Your Pemberley Reader,



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