BOOK REVIEW – The Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking Trilogy #1) by Patrick NessThe Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking #1)
by Patrick Ness
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*Re-read with all of (well, most of them) my wonderful GR friends: Kris (KC), Jen, Harriet, Sarah, Troy, and Maythavee. I literally forgot how wonderful this story is and how much I loved it the first time around. I’ll always adore Todd Hewitt and his lovable companion, Manchee. I found my emotions were all over the board this time because I knew what happened-The fact that I knew every twist and turn in no way made me feel less. In fact, it made me feel more. I felt sadness to my core in anticipation of certain unforgettable events, and I even laughed twice as much and appreciated their humor more this time around. A solid five stars (shut up ;)) for a story I will never forget-this will always be in my top three favorite series of all time. Thanks for reading it again with me, guys!!! And good luck….

******

But a knife ain’t just a thing, is it? It’s a choice, it’s something you DO. A knife says yes or no, cut or not, die or don’t. A knife takes a decision out of your hand and puts it in the world and it never goes back again.

Sometimes….sometimes a book comes along that you totally aren’t expecting. You think there is no way that it can be any good or that it can keep your attention. But then something happens. Something clicks-clicks right into place and gets your mind reeling and speculating and desperate for more.

You have to put the book down…and it nearly kills you. Ya know, because we have the real world to tend to. We can’t just be sitting around reading all day. We have jobs and repsonsibilities and-and all the while you can’t get this book out of your mind. For me, that was this book. This damn book.

If the world wants you, it’s gonna keep on coming till it gets you. And who am I that can fix it? Who am I that can change this if the world wants it so badly? Who am I to stop the end of the world if it keeps on coming?

I’m not going to say this was some groundbreaking story that absolutely everyone will love. I’m not even sure why I loved it. Maybe it was Todd, the main character. Maybe it was Manchee, the lovable talking dog who is always, ALWAYS there for Todd. Maybe it’s even that damn rip in the ‘noise’. Take your pick, I loved each of these characters so, so much. Also, though, is the struggle to remain a boy, to remain inherently good, to stay above all the evil that has corrupted this new society. Todd faces many obstacles that will ultimately test his overall humanity-whether he will be separated from the innocent boy he used to be and join the legion of people who can’t even be classified as men, but cowards who will never be good, who will never do what’s right, or stay true to who he is. The boy who will become a man by sticking up for what’s right and remaining honorable even in the face of certain death. I think this is what made this a story that is completely unforgettable. But as I was saying-this book is not for everyone. It is angsty. It is grammatically incorrect (who in the hell wouldn’t speak in run-on sentences if you were running from someone? Who has time to punctuate?). It has devastating cirumstances and things happen that will tear you apart. It is
barbaric
…And I LOVED it.

As long as I hold it as long as I use it, the knife lives, lives in order to take life, but it has to be commanded, it has to have me to tell it to kill, and it wants to, it wants to plunge and thrust and cut and stab and gouge, but I have to want it to as well, my will has to join with its will.

I’m the one who allows it and I’m the one responsible

Todd is the youngest in a town of men who can all hear each other’s ‘noise’. Noise is basically everyone’s thoughts…you can literally hear everyone’s thoughts. The reason it becomes ‘noise’, though, is because everyone’s thoughts conform and cause a massive ball of confusion and…well…noise. Or that’s at least how I understood it. Then a day comes when he must run for his life and he doesn’t know why, but knowledge is the last thing he needs on the subject. How do you run from people when they can hear literally everything you think/breathe/do? So the running begins.

The noise is a man unfiltered, and without a filter, a man is just chaos walking.

Overall, this story is very hard to explain and portray correctly. I keep wanting to say the writing was special or beautiful-default words, right? But they just don’t fit here. This book is different. The writing is downright raw. There are mispellings that express Todd’s level of education, and whereas this bothers me in literally every other book, it didn’t bother me in this story. It just didn’t. I knew what the author was trying to do, and it only added to the already intricately layered story. That’s the other thing-this story had layer, after layer, after layer. You think you have things figured out, but I can assure you-nothing is all that predictable. Yes, there’s a certain inevitabilty with every story, sure. In this one, no matter how much I DID KNOW, there was still a missing piece that I didn’t realize I was missing. Ness got me to wonder and wonder and wonder-I absolutely had to know what was going to happen next and why everything was the way it was.

Life ain’t fair.
It ain’t.
Not never.
It’s pointless and stupid and there’s only suffering and pain and people who want to hurt you. You can’t love nothing or no one cuz it’ll all be taken away or ruined and you’ll be left alone and constantly having to fight, constantly having to run just to stay alive.

Then the ending. That ending was most definitely a rough cliffy. Now, I ALSO knew what happened at the end-or so I thought. Yes, I had it partly correct, but to what extent of this inevitable end, I had no idea. Ultimately, this book drew emotions out of me that have long been buried since a certain book in March. I cried so fiercely that it bordered on embarrassing. I even put the story down and tried to come back to it after this certain *ahem* event, and I broke down again. Don’t judge me.

The only place you belong is the place you can never go back. And so yer always alone, forever and always.

The point I think I’ve been trying to make through this whole review is that TKONLG was a great, totally unexpected, and exciting read. It got my blood pumping, it consumed my thoughts, and I devoured it. Would I suggest it to any of my friends? Not likely. We all love romance, and there was a little smidgen mixed in-and that’s enough for me to be happy. My friends, though? I think they’d like less knife action and a little more romance. So, the answer is no. Will I read this again someday? Yes. Am I starting the second in the series immediately after I get home from work? Most definitely. Am I finally done rambling about the same points over and over again? Yep-over and out.

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