The Knife of Never Letting Go

The Knife of Never Letting Go

Book rating: 04 Paperback Chaos Walking Trilogy (Paperback)

By (author) Patrick Ness

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  • Publisher: Candlewick Press,U.S.
  • Format: Paperback | 479 pages
  • Dimensions: 135mm x 211mm x 38mm | 454g
  • Publication date: 14 July 2009
  • Publication City/Country: Cambrudge, MA
  • ISBN 10: 0763645761
  • ISBN 13: 9780763645762
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 3,525

Product description

Todd Hewitt is the only boy in a town of men. Ever since the settlers were infected with the Noise germ, Todd can hear everything the men think, and they hear everything he thinks. Todd is just a month away from becoming a man, but in the midst of the cacophony, he knows that the town is hiding something from him -- something so awful Todd is forced to flee with only his dog, whose simple, loyal voice he hears too. With hostile men from the town in pursuit, the two stumble upon a strange and eerily silent creature: a girl. Who is she? Why wasn't she killed by the germ like all the females on New World? Propelled by Todd's gritty narration, readers are in for a white-knuckle journey in which a boy on the cusp of manhood must unlearn everything he knows in order to figure out who he truly is.

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Author information

Patrick Ness, an award-winning novelist, has written for England's Radio 4 and SUNDAY TELEGRAPH and is a literary critic for the GUARDIAN. This is his first book for young adults. Born in Virginia, he currently lives in London. "From the Hardcover edition."

Customer reviews

By Manuel de Acha 04 May 2013 5

The first time I saw this book I thought this book will be one of my favorites...and I was right.

When I first start reading this book I cannot stop reading. I was completely blown away by Patrick Ness writing style, he put several elements that makes this novel one of the best ones I've read.

This is the first time I didn't find something wrong with a book. I cannot believe this book was so well written and with such a beautiful writing. The characters were extremely well developed, as everything that contain the book, but one of the reasons that I cannot stop reading was that I feel so real all the characters...I felt like they were by my side reading with me!

This book is going to be impossible to overcome, this is a fresh and unique story that all the readers will enjoy.

By Philip Farraj 14 Apr 2013 4

There were a lot of feelings in the book but i'm going to keep mine spoiler free !!
1- The Todd Relation was amazing even with a thing he didn't want !!
2- The plot was non stop actions so that makes it PERFECT ! but the ending wasn't that Good to me !!
3- There were so Flaws in the writing were Things would be better if he did .......
4- THE WRITING WAS AMAZING !!! PATRICK NESS HAS THE BEST WAY OF WRITING I EVER READ !!
All in all Give the book a shot and you wouldn't Regret it !

By Lydia Presley 18 Dec 2010 5

My first thought when I put this book down was...

Are you kidding me?!

I now understand why one book blogger states that she is an "evangelist" for this book. This book, this.. amazing book, it had me in tears, it had me choked up, it had me laughing, it had me angry and it had me completely tied around it's figurative finger.

The Knife of Never Letting Go is one seriously intense book - do not pick it up until you have the time ready, because you will not want to put it down until you've turned the last page. And even then - you'll be wishing you did the smart thing and had the next book ready.

There is so much I love about this book. I loved Todd, his innocence, his struggle and his instinct for survival and protection in a world that did not foster one of those feelings. I loved Viola's intelligence and her empathy for Todd and for others. I loved how human she is, how, in spite of all the odds against her she still takes the time to grieve and to feel for her own losses but never lets it get in the way of what needs to be done.

And then there's Manchee. Manchee is Todd's dog, the dog he never wanted - and much like the famous dog of Disney fame, Manchee thinks a dog's joyous, loyal thoughts. Everything from Squirrel! to Ow, Todd? (the question mark killed me - it's so .. doggie), Manchee endears himself to the reader and .. man, I can't talk about him without crying. What kind of book does this to a reader?!

Most of all though, this book goes to show just how powerful writing in the first person can be. Because not only do we hear Todd's thoughts, but so does everyone else. The others surrounding him hear what we think is narrative, but it's really Todd's thoughts. We hear words how he says them, we hear his lack of education, we are there in his mind, dealing with the fear and the confusion and the never-ending run from everything that is evil.

This is a book I'll be recommending eagerly to every teenager in my life. Fantastic story, great characters and a style of writing I can only stand in awe of. Well done, Patrick Ness, well done.

By TeensReadToo 19 Sep 2010 4

On a far-flung world newly settled by humanity, twelve-year-old Todd Hewitt of Prentisstown is a boy on the brink of becoming a man.

When settlers came to this world, they found it already inhabited by aliens known as the Spackle, and a war was waged against them to colonize the planet. Now, almost twenty years after the first settlers landed, the world is low-tech but free of the "spacks." However, they left behind them the "Noise germ," a chemical contaminant that causes all the men who come in contact with it to broadcast their thoughts for everyone's hearing--and kills all the infected women.

On the eve of his thirteenth birthday, Todd has never seen a woman. He was the last child born in the settlement before his mother succumbed to the Noise germ and died, and now he's the only boy left in the village of Prentisstown, all the others having turned thirteen and been proclaimed men. Now, with Todd's birthday approaching, the entire town is anxious, and Todd can hear it.

The men of the town are keeping something from him; although they can hear each other think, it's possible to learn techniques that allow one to control the information that others can hear. Ben and Cillian, his adoptive guardians and old friends of his parents, are both worried for him, though Todd doesn't know why.

And then, with less than a month to go until Todd's thirteenth birthday, he stumbles across a secret that no boy is meant to know and all men have been forced to forget, a secret about the history of his world and the lies he's been told. Todd has no choice but to escape from the town he's called his home and the people who have been his parents, on the run from something more terrible than the alien Spackle, and more familiar.

The sheer intensity of the story Ness tells kept me reading straight through this book, despite its length and occasionally hefty prose. Todd's first-person, present-tense narration has an inexorable pull that places the reader within the context of the story and keeps you turning the pages. The plot is full of twists and turns, the world is immaculately and innovatively crafted, and the characters' pain and longing seeps from the pages.

My largest complaint with this book was the way in which it ended, without resolving some major issues that had been significant throughout the story. It is the first book in a series, so this sense of incompleteness may be slightly forgiven, but I felt like I'd spent the entire book hurtling forward into empty space only to be slammed at the last minute against a brick wall.

That said, I'd recommend THE KNIFE OF NEVER LETTING GO to anyone who enjoys dystopia or slightly darker fiction, and I know I can't wait to see what happens next!

Review quote

"Sets a high standard in an already crowded fantasy fiction genre." -- THE INDEPENDENT (U.K.) -- Independent, The (UK) "From the Hardcover edition."