Sunday, February 17, 2008

Kazuo Ishiguro/NEVER LET ME GO


A 31-year-old woman, Kathy H, reflects on her childhood and education at an unusual institution called Hailsham, where students were taught that they had special responsibilities. Kathy remembers hallmarks of her relationships with Ruth and Tommy, her two closest friends, and on the hard lessons they learned together about the world and their places in it.

This was a good read--I literally couldn't stop turning pages. I think this is because Ishiguro assembled the story really carefully so each page you're only starting to figure out what's going on and need to know just a little more. Very clever of him. It makes writing a review difficult, because it's hard for me to say anything at all about my thoughts without giving all kinds of spoilers. I'm going to try, though.

I have to admit that the subject matter made me uncomfortable--which I'm sure was Ishiguro's point. Those of you who've read it, I'd be really interested to hear if you felt the same way. I was very frustrated with Kathy's attitude at the end of the story, too, although I do see that she's a careful product of her circumstance. And though I think the premise is a little bit flawed the whole story was created realistically enough to leave me feeling pretty upset and hopeless at the end.

In any case, a very absorbing and affecting read.

6 comments:

Cheryl said...

I'm intrigued by your review, but also confused. All I know is that it's about a woman reflecting on her years at an unusual school. Is there anything else you can say about why it's unusual without giving the story away? Just curious to know more.

moonrat said...

No, unfortunately... Very frustrating.

However, if you read it, I can't wait to hear your thoughts!!

Lisa said...

Ooh -- I have this one on the TBR shelf too. A good Moon Rat review automatically bumps it up in the batting order :)

bookfraud said...

it's a brilliant read, in my humble opinion. and yeah, if you reveal any more, you give up the major plot twist, which is brilliant and heartbreaking. (unfortunately, that didn't stop a lot of msm reviewers from spoiling it for me before i read it).

angelle said...

you are really going through all the ishiguros aren't you? i still have to read pale view...

i liked this a lot, but funnily enough, though i reemmber the premise and certain parts, i can't remember why i liked it specifically. it was good though, but not great. not great the way remains is.

Cheryl said...

I went to my library's website to request this book, and SADLY, their category labels told me all... I now know the big surprise.

I'm wondering if I should still read it. I feel like I've just read too many books/seen too many movies with this plot twist lately--I'm a little tired of the whole topic.