Book Review: The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

knifeofneverlettinggoTitle: The Knife of Never Letting Go
Author: Patrick Ness
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia, Fantasy

I received The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness as a Christmas gift this year and it had been on my wish list for several months. I’d only read one Patrick Ness novel, but I had heard so many great things about the Chaos Walking trilogy that I needed to pick this one up.

Premise: 5/5

A boy named Todd is almost a man. He’ll be a man in about a month, actually. When a boy becomes a man in Prentisstown, something changes within them. Todd is the last boy in Prentisstown, meaning he has been left out of a lot by the men. That’s not the only thing odd about Prentisstown. There are no women. Oh, and everyone can hear your thoughts. All the time. In fact, you can hear every thought in town, coming together to form the Noise that is the world’s background. Unfortunately for Todd, that means that his thoughts are going to cause him to be caught and possibly worse, because Todd is running. But how can you hide from a world that can hear your secret plans?

Yes. Sold. This sounds AWESOME.

Plot Development: 4/5

The plot did wonderful justice to this premise. It was paced well and was everything that I expected it would be. I only have a slight issue with the believability of a certain character that I won’t talk about due to spoilers.

Characterization: 4/5

I enjoyed Ness’s characterization in this novel, even though I thought it could be better. Ultimately, Beginning-Todd is much different than End-Todd, which is pretty great. I also loved Manchee, Todd’s dog. I thought the Noise was pretty well done throughout the novel.

Writing Style: 3/5

This book took me a month to read. It was hard for me to be in the mood for it because of the writing style. It reminded me of The Maze Runner by James Dashner, which I did not like, in that it was really dramatic and withheld a lot of information from the reader. Every chapter ended in too much suspense, making me think “dun dun DUN” way too often. Overall, I was able to look past this because of the intriguing storyline.

Readability: 4/5

The overdramatic aspects of this novel, however, made this a true Young Adult novel. It definitely caters to the intended YA audience. Its language and content was appropriate for the audience as well. Sometimes, the Noise made the dialogue between characters really confusing, but other than that, it was pretty easy to read…when I was in the mood to do so.

Total Score: 20/25, avg. 4/5

4 stars

This is an obvious 4 stars. It took me a month to read because of some issues I had with it, but I liked it overall. It was an interesting read and I’ll more than likely continue the series.

I read this book for the #sixsquaredchallenge hosted by bookstacksamber! – Books to Start a Series

Have you read The Knife of Never Letting Go? What did you think?

kacie

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Want to purchase a copy of The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness for yourself? Check it out on The Book Depository by clicking HERE.

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Holiday Loot 2015

Well, the holiday season as pretty much come and gone, at least for me. The school district in which I work is back in session on Monday, January 4, so I’m using the next two days to “be a kid” again. I’ve been in my pajamas, reading books, watching Netflix, and just hanging out. I’m not ready to go back into the real world yet. Sigh.

I did have a wonderful winter break and I am excited to see my students again! They’re going to be gushing all about the presents that Santa put under their Christmas trees and possibly even showing me the loot that they hauled this year. It’s rather adorable. I’m probably going to turn that into a writing project for them. Muahahaha.

But now, it’s time for me to gush about my loot that I hauled this year. This Christmas, I received some truly thoughtful gifts that I am really excited about.

From my sister, I received some chalk pens for my board at school (my school still uses chalkboards!) as well as some teacher stamps for grading papers! Along the same lines, my eldest brother and his girlfriend gave me about 1500 smelly stickers to give to kids. They also got me a 2 lb. jar of Dr. Pepper jelly beans with a chalk label that says “Miss Roberts.” Well…actually, it said “Mrs. Robertson” because one of my students just can’t get it right…

From my parents, I got the softest blanket I’ve ever had. It’s fleece on one side and a sweater on the other. I’ve taken it everywhere in my house since opening it Christmas day.

blanket

I also got a Fitbit Flex from them! I’ve been wanting a Fitbit for about a year now and I’m really excited to finally have one. My stats have been pitiful lately, but once I go back to work on Monday, my steps are going to skyrocket. Do any of you have a Fitbit? What do you think about it? I’d love to have some bookish friends to compete in challenges against. Add me, if you’d like: kacieanneroberts@gmail.com

fitbit

My other brother gave me Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. It’s beautiful with its black-edge pages and I’m excited to dive into this one. Thank you, mother, for giving him a list of books on my wish list.

six of crows

Every year, my mother’s side of the family does a gift exchange on Christmas Eve. This year, my mom’s brother drew my name and he gave me The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness and Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas. (I’ve already started reading the Patrick Ness book. Check out my reading progress here.) He wrapped the books inside a plastic bin that will be very useful at school.

knifeofneverlettinggo queenofshadows

Yay books and teacher things!

I also ventured into my local library, so expect a Library Loot post coming soon!

See you soon and happy reading!

kacie

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Book Review: The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

the rest of us just live hereTitle: The Rest of Us Just Live Here
Author: Patrick Ness
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy/Contemporary

To start this review, I want to tell you just how excited I was to read this book. If you remember, it made my list of “most anticipated books” several times here on my blog. I just loved the idea of it and thought it was fresh and new. I couldn’t wait to read it. In fact, I bought it for myself when I got hired as a teacher. TREAT YO SELF.

tomhaverford_glee

I wasn’t able to read it at first because I’ve been crazy busy teaching and preparing for school at all hours. My family went up to the mountains for a week at the beginning of November and I read it in about a day.

Here’s what I thought about The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness.

Premise: 5/5

I loved the premise of this novel. It’s what made me anticipate its release so much. It’s a YA Fantasy so there are definitely Chosen Ones…but it’s not what the book was about. Instead of following the Chosen Ones, it follows the regular guys in the background, the people who are just hoping that the latest disaster won’t affect their upcoming graduation.

Plot Development: 3/5

Unfortunately, the plot development didn’t live up to the fantastic premise. There were times that I was bored while reading. Sure, the characters are the regular guys in the background, but they did some pretty boring stuff. There were some great aspects to the plot, don’t get me wrong, but the majority was pretty unmemorable.

Characterization: 2/5

I couldn’t connect with the characters. I enjoyed the fact that the novel had a diverse cast of characters, but they felt forced. They were unique and open minded teenagers…to the point where it just wasn’t believable to me. They weren’t John-Green-Teenagers, spouting poetic epiphanies every other page, but they just weren’t believable.

Writing Style: 3/5

It took me too long to get into this novel. I think part of that has to do with the “titles” at the beginning of each chapter. Each chapter was headed by a few sentences about what the Chosen Ones, or “indie kids” were up to. These excited me at first, but when I realized that these titles were pretty much the only connection between our characters and the Chosen Ones, I was pretty disappointed. The other main aspect of writing that I wasn’t thrilled with was the narrator’s assumption that the world we are reading about is the norm. He was sarcastic about “indie kids” and their names and the disasters that happen to their town/world. I liked the concept of it being normal to everyone, just not the explanation of it to the reader.

Readability: 3/5

This is a Young Adult book, but I’m not sure how “young” of an adult the reader should be. If I were to split the “Young Adult” category into age 12 – 15 and age 15 – 18, I would recommend this book to the latter half. Even though I read this book in about a day, it was still a rough read for me. I had to force myself to keep reading through some of the really dry parts.

Total Score: 16/25, avg. 3.2/5

Overall, I was really underwhelmed by this book. I was really excited for the premise, but felt the book didn’t live up to it. This was my first Patrick Ness novel, but I haven’t been discouraged from reading his other works.

I give it 3 stars!

3 stars

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Want to purchase a copy of The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness for yourself? Check it out on The Book Depository by clicking HERE.

See you soon!

kacie