Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Never Let Me Go - Kazuo Ishiguro (ENGLAND)

I read this book years ago and absolutely loved it (along with all other Ishiguro books I've read). I recently joined a book group - and we decided we would pick our reading selections from prior Booker Prize Finalists. And this was the first selection which we will discuss this upcoming weekend. I was eager to pick it up again and see if I loved it as much the second time around. Never Let Me Go is told by the first-person narrator, Kathy, as she looks back on her years at Halisham - a boarding school in the English countryside. She focuses her story on her two closest friends, Tommy and Ruth, telling the story in pieces as she recalls small details and tries to piece together what she knew when. Throughout the book it is clear that there is something sinister or different going on with the children at Halisham - they are special in some way that is at first unclear - to both the reader and the students. Slowly, the story comes together, and while plot-wise the book is decently interesting - I think what I particularly enjoyed is the idea of memory and recollection. As Kathy remembers pieces and shares them with her friends, their memories don't always match up - though it's unclear whether they simply don't want to remember. I had the added twist to this reading experience of remembering parts of the story, but not others and seeing it unfold a second time was definitely well worth it. I believe I have one Ishiguro book on my shelves at home that I have not yet read (The Unconsoled). I've been saving it for a special occassion, but the time to fish it out might be sooner rather than later.

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