This review is spoiler free.
“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.”
Series: Chaos Walking
Published: 2018, by Walker Books.
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia, Science Fiction, Fantasy
Contains: Blood/Gore, Strong Language, Murder, Torture, Death, Violence, Anger, Fear
‘The Knife of Never Letting Go’ is the first instalment in the Chaos Walking trilogy, exploring Prentisstown, where everyone can hear everyone else’s thoughts in a conscious stream of ‘Noise’. When Todd and his pet dog, Manchee, discover an awful secret they must run for their lives, but how can you run from those that can hear your every thought?
Admittedly, I expected to be disappointed by this book. It’s extremely hyped and difficult to read on occasion. But, I loved it.
Todd and Viola are incredibly interesting characters, their total opposites but circumstances brought them together. Todd’s narrative is what brought me to both love and hate reading. Written in first person, his lack of education causes a literary barrier between the protagonist and reader. It took a while to get to grips of it, but was a very clever technique once you get the hang of it. The typography of the Noise was also cleverly done; you have the opportunity to see just how awful and overwhelming it can be to have so many thoughts circulating around in your mind. However, my favourite characters were Ben and Cillian. They don’t have much of a part in this book, yet being total opposites but joining forces to protect Todd was a wonderful technique to read. Manchee was also a fun addition to the novel, being very quick-witted and the comic relief of it all. But, I mean, who wouldn’t want to hear what their pets were thinking?
Overall, ‘The Knife of Never Letting Go’ was an fun and interesting read, with a gripping concept, characters you can root for, and enough tragedy to keep you wanting more.