Thursday, April 29, 2010
The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
This story reminded me of the TV series Firefly. Not the storyline, just the mix of futuristic and old-fashioned cultures. It makes for such an interesting dynamic that I could not put this book down. Todd is an amazingly real character with a strong voice, and I love that we got to see right down into the corners of his mind. Especially when it came to his interactions with his dog. Hilarious!
The pacing is phenomenal, and once I passed the halfway mark I could not tear myself away. I finished the rest in one sitting. Todd’s journey, both physical and emotional, is riveting. The fact that we learn about his world along with him makes it that much more enticing. There were a few times when Todd learned information that he didn’t share with us, which I found irritating (because it felt like a contrived way to increase suspense). But I was so into the story that I overlooked it.
I sometimes had trouble with the way certain words were spelled. Instead of spelling them correctly, they were spelled the way they sounded. For example, words ending in –tion were spelled with –shun instead. That tripped me up a few times, and annoyed me when I was really into the story and didn’t want to have to stop and decipher an everyday word. But it was just a minor annoyance.
There was only one thing that I really did not like, and that was the last page. I can appreciate that this is a trilogy, and the overall story isn’t finished. I can also appreciate that, technically, the story arc in this first book was fulfilled. However, the ending still felt abrupt. Actually, it ended in the middle of a scene. That reminded me of a bad TV series that mercilessly tortured you with cliffhanger endings. But, with TV, you only have to wait a week to find out what happens next. With a book, we have to wait a year! To me, this felt over the top, like the author didn’t trust that the reader was hooked enough to pick up the next book. Um, I AM. But the massive cliffhanger really put me off.
The second book in the series came out in September, and I’m guessing the third will come out sometime this fall. If you can live with torturous cliffhangers, then I highly recommend this book. If not, then wait for the final book to come out before you pick this one up. :)