I am awful at book reviews, but I really like this book, so bear with me.
Prentisstown isn’t like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else’s thoughts in an overwhelming, never-ending stream of Noise. Just a month away from the birthday that will make him a man, Todd and his dog, Manchee — whose thoughts Todd can hear too, whether he wants to or not — stumble upon an area of complete silence. They find that in a town where privacy is impossible, something terrible has been hidden — a secret so awful that Todd and Manchee must run for their lives.
But how do you escape when your pursuers can hear your every thought?
To be completely honest, I don’t think the above Goodreads description does a very good job of capturing the essence of The Knife of Never Letting Go. It doesn’t give you much of a sense of the absolute insanity of this world, where everyone can hear Todd’s every thought – and he can hear everyone else’s.
Well, almost everyone else’s.
The Knife of Never Letting Go (and the other books in the Chaos Walking series) is very strange. The world is very familiar and very alien all at the same time. Sometimes the action and the dialogue are silly, to the point of making me laugh out loud, and sometimes they are really, really not.
And the voice is really unusual and in-your-face and takes some time to get into, especially because it’s in a made-up dialect. In fact, the voice seems to be the number one reason I’ve seen people give for putting it down; but then, others love it. I definitely do, now that I’ve adjusted to it.
The story is 100% worth pushing through the voice for, whether you like it that voice or not. The whole series grapples with a lot of really tough moral issues in a way that makes it clear that little is ever black and white, no matter how it might seem to the person standing next to you. It’s all handled gracefully and in a way that makes you think – and that also makes you terrified of how you might react in a similar situation.
It can be a tough read, but it’s worth it. The whole series is.
Who else has read The Knife of Never Letting Go? What did you think?