The Knife of Never Letting Go
Author: Patrick Ness
Pages [hardcover]: 479
Opening Lines: The first thing you find out when yer dog learns to talk is that dogs don’t got nothing much to say. About anything.
You can’t say everything, so you don’t say nothing.
Manchee & Ben
Todd Hewitt is the last boy in Prentisstown.
But Prentisstown isn’t like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else’s thoughts in a constant, overwhelming, never-ending Noise. There is no privacy. There are no secrets.
Or are there?
Just one month away from the birthday that will make him a man, Todd unexpectedly stumbles upon a spot of complete silence.
Which is impossible.
Prentisstown has been lying to him.
And now he’s going to have to run…
This is one of those books where you sit back and think, “Wow. I’m never read anything like this.” And then perhaps, “Why aren’t more books written like this one?!”
At least, I did.
The Knife of Never Letting Go, besides having an awesome title, has an amazing main character, Todd. He lives on New World and his parents were some of the first settlers there. He has the Noise, a germ that projects a man’s thoughts to the world and kills every woman it touches. Todd is the youngest boy in Prentisstown, with only a month until he becomes a man. But his world soon turns upside down as he has to face the fact that everything he has ever been told is a lie.
I absolutely adore the writing style used in this book. Todd’s thoughts are scattered and wild. His education has been poor at best, so he barely knows how to read. One of my favorite sentences from the book is: “The plans are still being planned, the preparayshuns prepared, it will be a party, I guess, tho I’m starting to get some strange pictures about it, all dark and too bright at the same time, but nevertheless I will become a man and picking apples in the swamp is not a job for a man or even an almost-man.” ‘Preparayshuns’ is spelled just how Todd hears it and thinks it should be spelled. I like how the Noise is always in bold or italicized to add extra emphasis.
Manchee, Todd’s faithful dog, can speak. Actually, every animal can speak in some sort of way. Sheep, squirrels, crocodiles.
The only negative comment I could make would be that the story is almost repetitive. I don’t want to give anything away by example. I know some readers may hate that, but I personally didn’t mind it. It added to the mood of desperation, frustration, and suspense.
The ending . . . This is a beauty of an ending, one I never, ever saw coming. It jumped right at me, just as I was wondering how there could possibly be two other books following this one. Now I must get my hands on book two . . .
The Knife of Never Letting Go is a fabulous book that gets 5/5 stars. I very much recommend it.