I haven't adored a book as much as this in a while. Patrick Ness's 'The Knife of Never Letting Go' is probably one of the most absorbing, exhilarating and altogether fantastic works of imaginative fiction in the last decade. In my view, it should rival if not usurp the lofty position of 'Northern Lights' by Philip Pullman as a wholly original masterpiece for young adults and (old) adults alike. There are not enough superlatives to express just how extraordinary this book is. Two words: read it!

Set in a dystopian world, where men can hear each other's thoughts, Todd is a thirteen year old boy on the edge of adulthood. It is not only men who can hear each other's thoughts but every living thing too. Everything is Noise. And yet, Todd and his stupid dog Manchee discover a gap in the noise; a silence...

It is best not to say anymore because there are so many twists and turns that I thought I was going to hyperventilate as a result. The story is written from Todd's perspective, through his Noise, which is just genius. Todd speaks in a distinct dialect with a clear inability to speak (or think) coherently. But he is just so captivating. We are literally in his head through it all- and my is there a lot he goes through! Ness just brilliantly infuses form and content so well that other character's interacting with Todd's narration does not seem at all out of place. While Pullman had daimons pestering around heads, Ness just bombards us with NOISE! It could so not have worked, but it does... magnificently!

I really don't want to say more except read it, immediately! It surely is destined to be a modern classic. I hope it does. It should be right up there with Pullman; it certainly won all the prizes going! I cannot wait to read the sequels. It is almost impossible to imagine where it all might go, and I love that: an impossible imaginative possibility...

© 2020 by Chris Soul. 

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