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Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Knife of Never Letting Go

I was familiar with author, Patrick Ness, from reading A Monster Calls – which had me sobbing into endless amounts of Kleenex. You can read my review in a previous post. I just started this fall as the Librarian of a high school. My students are very busy with required reading and research, but the ones reading for pleasure all told me that I had to read his Chaos Walking trilogy starting with The Knife of Never Letting Go. I love student recommendations more than anything – they always know the next book to read. Although this book is 479 pages long, it is a quick read. In this futuristic world in Prentisstown, although there are many men, there is only one boy, Todd, who will turn into a man in a month. All the women and girls have been killed by the germ released by the Spackles, enemies encountered when humans discovered the New World. The germ not only killed the females, but left all the males able to hear the thoughts of each other and all animals. There is endless NOISE created from the thoughts of men that takes all peace away until Todd and his dog, Manchee, discover the quiet in the forbidden swamp. Todd is given a book written by his mother and told to run away from Prentisstown. He leaves knowing that everything he has been told his entire life is uncertain. He discovers the quiet is actually a girl orphaned by an accident. The townsmen want both of them and are leading an army to attack. The hardest part for me was reading the misspellings in the text which Ness did to assert Todd’s lack of education. This book was so suspenseful – my students were right, it is a must read! I can’t wait to read Book 2 – The Ask and the Answer. The author answers questions about his Chaos Walking trilogy in the video below.

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