Title: Never Let Me Go
Author: Kazuo Ishiguro
Summary: Hailsham seems like a pleasant English boarding school, far from the influences of the city. Its students are well tended and supported, trained in art and literature, and become just the sort of people the world wants them to be. But, curiously, they are taught nothing of the outside world and are allowed little contact with it.
Within the grounds of Hailsham, Kathy grows from schoolgirl to young woman, but it’s only when she and her friends Ruth and Tommy leave the safe grounds of the school (as they always knew they would) that they realize the full truth of what Hailsham is.
My Rating: 7.5/10
What I liked/disliked about the book: The book is almost haunting as the reader follows the story of Kathy and her friends as they prepare for their fate which is disturbing, cruel and sad at the same time. I enjoyed the book, especially one that bounces around in time periods, but wish it gave more detail to this dystopian world.
I thought the narrative was very well done, it could have easily fallen apart, as the main character, Kathy, looks back on her life, and how she got to the point she's at now. It moves around a lot, and the memories are disjointed at times, but it works out wonderfully. This is something that could have fallen apart, but the author manages it wonderfully - it really does feel like you're in her mind, picking out random bits of memory.
I also enjoyed the story itself, it was creepy learning how these children were clones, and what they were created for, but I enjoyed reading, tryign to find out more. At the same time, there was much to be learned about the world, what everything means, things are hinted at, but not always fully explained. While at times I enjoyed this aspect, other times I wished there was more explained to the background of the story.
I wasn't a big fan of the characters, it felt like something was missing from them, I felt that the story and the fate of the characters was sad, but I didn't connect to them emotionally. A well told story, but I just didn't click with the characters. There are multiple themes explored throughout the story, the morality of human cloning, how far is too far, is just one of the many. It doesn't go into to fully, but there are many themes worthy of discussion. Overall well done story.
Would I recommend it to read: Yes, particularly in a book group, theres so much you're able to discuss from it, I think it would be a great book to read for a group discussion. The book isn't for everyone - I can say that. And it's not the best dystopian I've read, but it does tell an interesting story.
What to read next: The Unit is very similar. There's another book out there, I think it's called the Island, that is also similar in themes.
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