The Knife of Never Letting Go, by Patrick Ness

I wanted to like this book more than I actually did. I had high expectations, and, while this book was entertaining, it wasn’t great. The concept behind the story is amazing. A boy is growing up on a colonized planet where everyone can hear everyone else’s thoughts, yet there are still dark secrets to uncover.

The less than stellar:

  • The main character is whiny, obnoxious and stupid in the way of stock YA characters–where they refuse to listen, act rationally or not just yell “nu-uh!” in response to everything other characters say or do.
  • This book uses random dialect. And by “dialect” I mean specifically and only throwing in the occasional “ain’t” and only misspelling words that end in -ation (“-ayshun”).
  • The main character receives a book he can’t read. He hauls this stupid thing around for three quarters of the book, and the book is constantly referred to and placed in high importance. He finally reads one page of it, and then it is simply tossed to the wind. What?? You can’t give an object that much importance and then just…drop it. That’s what editing is for–you go back and take out the dumb book, it was a lost plot point. Granted, The Knife is the first in a series and the book may return, but I’m not sure I’ll be returning to the series.

Despite my complaints, this is a fast-paced YA novel set in an interesting new world. If you need a quick read that will suck you in and then spit you back out after annoying you a little but taking you on an adventure, it won’t hurt to read this.