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Never Let Me Go Paperback – 25 Feb 2010
Audio Cassette, Audiobook, Unabridged, Import
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Masterly... A novel with piercing questions about humanity and humaneness. (Sunday Times)
A brilliantly executed book by a master craftsman who has chosen a difficult subject: ourselves, seen through a glass, darkly. (Margaret Atwood Slate.com)
A page-turner and a heartbreaker, a tour de force of knotted tension and buried anguish. (Time)
A master stoyteller ... In this deceptively sad novel, he simply uses a science-fiction framework to throw light on ordinary human life, the human soul, human sexuality, love, creativity and childhood innocence. He does so with devastating effect. (Independent)
A clear frontrunner to be the year's most extraordinary novel. (Sunday Times)
Brilliant. The most exact and affecting of his novels to date. (Observer)
Never Let Me Go is the acclaimed bestseller by Kazuo Ishiguro, author of the Booker Prize-winning novel, The Remains of the Day and The Buried Giant. Now a major film adaptation starring Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan.See all Product description
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Never Let Me Go performed that bewitching magical spell on me. Written in a
naturally simple style and language, the novel did not force me even once to
refer to a dictionary–the language that simple from a Nobel laureate speaks of
a rare achievement.
What holds us in a thrall in the novel? Ishiguro has employed the technique of
gradual disclosures of the fate and condition of the novel’s young characters.
Words like ‘carer’, ‘donor’ and ‘completing’ make us curious about the young
characters who appear normal, yet strange. Where are their parents? Why do
artworks play a significant role in their lives? Why can’t they live a normal life of
aspirations? Why do some people keep a distance from them? The search of
answers to these questions compel us to turning the pages.
For long, the novel seems to be nothing but a typical novel that charmingly
reminisces the school days of girlhood/boyhood and the sexual awakening of
adolescence. Once we learn that the apparently normal boys and girls are cloned
creatures meant to be ‘harvested’ for the health and longevity of the mainstream
populace, our hearts begin to give away layer after layer, sinking us in a mucky,
Even as the characters–Kathy, Tommy and Ruth–know their fates, they fall in love
and hope for an extension of life. But neither love nor art can redeem them from
the inevitable fate that the supremely sophisticated medical science has invented
for them. Ruth completes her role and so does Tommy; Kathy lives on to tell us the
tale without anger or frustration. She longs for Tommy’s love, but does not utter
words of complain about those who made them like that. The last paragraph of the
novel reveals the absurdity of the days gone and of vagueness of the days yet to
”I was thinking about the rubbish, the flapping plastic in the branches, the shore-line
of odd stuff caught along the fencing, and I half-closed my eyes and imagined this
was the spot where everything I’d ever lost since my childhood had washed up, and
I was now standing here in front of it, and if I waited long enough, a tiny figure would
appear on the horizon across the field, and gradually get larger until I’d see it was
Tommy, and he’d wave, maybe even call. The fantasy never got beyond
that—I didn’t let it—and though the tears rolled down my face, I wasn’t sobbing or
out of control. I just waited a bit, then turned back to the car, to drive off to wherever
it was I was supposed to be.”
It could be read as a novel about all of us: we all live as if life is forever, fully
aware that the end can be any moment. Yet we never stop hoping for brightness,
creating the beautiful and lusting after the sensual.
A strongly recommended book.
The story's narrator is a young woman reminiscing about her school days. This is no ordinary school though, as the reader finds out page by page. You get the feeling that the story is somehow a science fiction, but the fact is never quite out there. It turns out to be a love triangle as well, while being deeply psychological.
While reading, one is also reminded time and again of the irony of retrospection. How things in the past seem different when you turn back from the present. How perspective changes with the passage of time and the advantage of knowledge.
The x with the reader's head, the author does not deliberately reveal the narrator's background, but forces us to believe her as being a regular person.
Worth a read for the serious reader.
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