Monday, June 13, 2011
My Review of Never Let Me Go, by Kazuo Ishiguro
I picked up Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go at the library; it had been on my to-read list for several weeks,and I finally found a copy, albeit large-print.
The book had gone on my to-read list solely on the strength of a blogger's review I read--I think it was part of Semicolon's Saturday Review of Books.
To that blogger, and I'm not sure who it was, THANK YOU for not spoiling it, because that would be so easy to do with this book. I'm going to try to review this book without revealing too much as well.
Thanks to the non-spoiled review, I went into the book completely ignorant of what it was really about, and I was able to let the story unfold for myself. I also did not know that a movie had been made of it. DON'T Google the movie if you plan on reading the book; it will probably give too much away.
I'll tell you, as the reviewer told me and other readers, that the book is about Kathy, a 31-year-old "carer" (as the British call caregivers)for patients she calls "donors."
Kathy was raised at an apparently exclusive school called Hailsham, where the students are instilled with the knowledge that they are somehow very special and unique.
Having recently re-connected with two of her best friends from Hailsham, Ruth and Tommy, Kathy spends much of the book reminiscing about her time at the school and afterwards, when some of the students are transferred to a place called the Cottages.
One reviewer called Never Let Me Go "a haunting story of friendship and love"...but it's much more than that. It doesn't take us long to begin to realize that there's something very strange about Hailsham.
The truth, when revealed, is shocking indeed. But although this is science fiction, you can see how something like this could be very plausible and even probable in our world's not-too-distant future.
Kathy narrates the story with gentle and un-dramatic prose, but as a reader, I was completely captured.
And even though (minor spoiler here) the indeed could not be a happy one, I was glad I read it. It was ultimately a very moving, fascinating and thought-provoking book.