The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness


Vanessa Di Gregorio

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick NessThe first thing you find out when yer dog learns to talk is that dogs don’t got nothing much to say.

You need to read this.

No, really. READ THIS BOOK.

Why? Well…

Imagine always being able to hear everyone’s thoughts, at all times, fighting to drown each other out in a sea of endless Noise. Well, that’s what life is like in Prentisstown. Everyone in Prentisstown can hear each other’s thoughts. It’s an endless, loud Noise full of words and pictures. There is no privacy. And if that wasn’t bad enough, Todd has the bad luck of having to put up with hearing his dog, Manchee, as well.

Everyone in Prentisstown is a man. With only has one month left before his birthday, Todd is the last boy in town to become a man.

Everyone in Prentisstown has secrets. So when Todd accidentally stumbles upon a pocket of complete, total silence – a bubble of quiet, surrounded by overwhelming noise – he unwittingly stumbles into yet another of the town’s secrets. And he will have to run for his life.

Doesn’t that sound ridiculously amazing? That’s because it is.

Honestly, Patrick Ness is absolutely brilliant. Brilliant brilliant BRILLIANT!

Todd’s voice is utterly compelling. He draws you right in, until all you hear are his thoughts in your head, even when you aren’t reading anymore. Though it took me a few pages to get used to his voice, once I did, I was engrossed. Being in his mind just made sense in every way. And what’s even more incredible is that even though Todd is far from perfect, his imperfections make you like him even more. He is believable. He feels real. And his dog, Manchee – though he doesn’t say much – is absolutely lovable in every way.

This isn’t a book for the faint of heart. If I could only use one word to describe this book, it would be: intense. This book will have you gripping the pages, heart pounding and body sweating. This is a book that made me cry (more than once), and even made me so upset that I actually threw the book down at one point. But then I picked it right back up, because I just had to know what would happen to Todd. Because he’d already won his way into my heart, and I didn’t even realize it. This is a violent and intense book, and things just keep getting worse and worse. But you cheer Todd on, because you want him to make it. You want him to live. If you’re looking for a book to read after THE HUNGER GAMES, this is it. In fact, I daresay it’s even more of an edge-of-your-seat read than THE HUNGER GAMES. Really!

Honestly, this book is one of my top fave books of all time. I loved it, and for a long time I couldn’t stop thinking about it.

And that ending? I actually burst out loud with shock. So if you plan on reading this, you’ll most likely want to have book two with you, ready at hand. Because once you finish THE KNIFE OF NEVER LETTING GO, you’ll be dying to read the next one – I promise.

Oh! And be sure to check back here tomorrow for the cover reveal of Erin Bowman’s TAKEN! You don’t want to miss it!

Vanessa Di Gregorio works in publishing as a sales rep at Ampersand, a book and gift sales agency. She is also a former literary agency intern. When she isn’t out selling books and talking to bookstores, Vanessa can be found over at Something Geeky, GoodreadsTwitter, or writing for Paper Droids.


20 Responses to The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

  1. Julie Jun 18 2012 at 6:22 am #

    Oh WOW Vanessa – this sounds SO GOOD! Thanks for the recommendation! <3

    • Vanessa Di Gregorio Jun 18 2012 at 5:42 pm #

      Thanks Julie! I feel like I can’t do this book justice, because there’s so much to say – but I refuse to spoil anything! You definitely should read it!

  2. Kat Zhang Jun 18 2012 at 8:12 am #

    I’ve heard of this book a lot, but for whatever reason, I didn’t actually know what it was about ( Your rec definitely makes me want to check it out 😀

  3. Erin Bowman Jun 18 2012 at 8:16 am #

    V, I’d heard so many people gushing about this novel, yourself included, and I finally picked it up last month. WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG? It was absolutely phenomenal. Even with Todd’s blunt and unembellished voice, I felt everything. So many feelings! I don’t know how Ness does it.

    I just devoured THE ASK AND THE ANSWER last week and will be moving on to MONSTERS OF MEN shortly. Great review!! (Oh, and Manchee? <3 that dog.)

    • Vanessa Di Gregorio Jun 18 2012 at 5:45 pm #

      YES! He’s very blunt, and is a bit ignorant and makes mistakes, but he’s just one of those characters that stays with you, and makes you feel.

      And yes! Manchee! Fave dog of all time!

      (And I started reading MONSTERS OF MEN months ago and stopped, because I just don’t want it to end, you know?)

  4. Megan Duff Jun 18 2012 at 9:07 am #

    It is so strange that you just posted this because…I gushed like crazy on Rachel’s post last week about these books! You probably didn’t read TKONLG because of what I said but…I’ll just pretend like you did 😀

    That post inspired me to write my “Hipster Book List”, all those books that I love but don’t know anyone else who has read them. (look what’s at #1!!!)

    • Vanessa Di Gregorio Jun 18 2012 at 5:58 pm #

      Hey Megan!

      First – LOVE the hipster book list! That’s so awesome! (And totally love how the Chaos Walking Trilogy is #1! WOOHOO! Though really, I didn’t have a doubt in my mind ;P)

      Second – Haha! I actually read this book MONTHS ago, and had this recommendation half-written since! One of my fantastic bookstore buyers told me about it, and I immediately bought it. Since then, every time I sell to her, I buy a ton of books that she recommends to me. It’s pretty amazing 🙂 OR…. you’re right, and I could very well have read your comment on Rachel’s post 😉

      And third (and totally unrelated) – your “About Me” puppy photo on your blog is THE cutest thing EVER! And yes – it totally makes you trustworthy! 😀

      • Megan Duff Jun 19 2012 at 12:21 pm #

        Hey Vanessa!

        Its so awesome that you read my Hipster list 😀 I would like to think that I am like your bookseller friend: I recommend good books. I am basically a library to my friends and they put up with my gushing and raving about whatever I’m reading.

        Aren’t corgi’s the cutest dogs ever??? I already have names picked out and everything lol Someday *sigh*

        PS Did Monsters of Men make you cry like a baby too??? I was a bigger mess than when I read TFIOS, and that’s saying something!!!

        • Vanessa Di Gregorio Jun 19 2012 at 1:56 pm #

          Alrighty – next time I need a rec for a book, I’m definitely asking you! (Or checking out your blog – the rest of the books on your hipster list I haven’t read!)

          And corgi’s are so ridiculously adorable I CAN’T EVEN STAND IT! :p We’ve actually been talking about doing a post on Pets of the PC gals or something like that (I’ve got a 4 month old husky puppy who is pretty much the cutest thing of all time).

          I actually stopped reading MONSTERS OF MEN halfway through because the thought of not having anything left to read broke my heart a bit, and I just don’t want it to end. So it’s sitting on my bedside table, waiting for the day when I’m ready to finish reading it (I have a feeling I will bawl like a baby FOR SURE!). Soon as I’m done, we’ll need to talk about it!

          • Megan Duff Jun 19 2012 at 4:43 pm #

            Here is my suggestion: read Love Walked In by Marisa De Los Santos. You will be on a happiness high like no other. Your thoughts will be made up of magic and rainbows and cupcakes. Hell, you might CRY OF HAPPINESS.

            Step 2: cuddle your puppy. Cause’ they make everything better.

            Step 3: cautiously look over the first half of Monsters of Men. Mentally prepare yourself. Remember that light and joy exist in this world (our world, not necessarily Todd’s unfortunately). Accept that this book will make you feel all the feels.

            Then read Monsters of Men.

            Then tell me all about the feels coursing through your veins 😀

  5. Laura Wardle Jun 18 2012 at 10:47 am #

    Ah, another recommendation for this book. It sounds absolutely fantastic. Gosh, I’m definitely going to have to order it ASAP. Great review, Vanessa! 🙂

  6. linda Jun 18 2012 at 12:21 pm #

    Intense is totally the word I chose for this book, too! The ending was crazy. I still have to read Book 3. I enjoy the thrill ride, but I’mm conflicted — I find it a bit hard to get behind Todd 100%, especially in his interactions with the Spackle.

    • Vanessa Di Gregorio Jun 18 2012 at 5:52 pm #

      I haven’t finished book 3 yet, because I just don’t want it to end. That’s probably really weird of me, but… I just need to wait a bit before I can come to terms with it ending.

      And you know, Todd’s mistakes (and he makes A LOT) and his actions that aren’t always likable actually make me like him more. Because he seems more real to me. He doesn’t make stupid mistakes – he does things that, given how little he knows and the positions he’s put in, are wrong, but understandable. Which I think is why I admire Patrick Ness so much as a writer. Todd COULD be the good guy, who only makes one little mistake and rights it, who is a moral shining beacon – but that would’ve made him less credible a character. It would’ve made the story different. I don’t think we’re supposed to agree with everything Todd does – that would be boring. I think we’re supposed to struggle along with him, and doubt his actions as much as him. And he regrets. And it haunts him. And… I could probably go on and on, but yes – I think we’re supposed to be, at times, conflicted – just as much as he is.

  7. Alexa @ Alexa Loves Jun 18 2012 at 1:22 pm #

    I’ve seen this book around, and been utterly curious about it, but this review/recommendation definitely makes me want to check it out!

    • Vanessa Di Gregorio Jun 18 2012 at 5:59 pm #

      Woohoo! So glad it does Alexa! I really hope you do pick it up, because it’s just incredible! SO SO SO good! (Please please please pick up a copy, and then gush over it with me!)

  8. Yahong Jun 20 2012 at 1:43 pm #


    That is all.

  9. Jamboree Jan 1 2013 at 4:53 pm #

    I remember when this book was newly released. It was nominated for the Carnegie Medal and for some stupid reason it didn’t win! Crazy! I went to one of his first ever talks about his books and he was amazing again. I hope that the book does get turned into a film just because I want to see a different persons view on ‘the noise’. Plus if it becomes a film and does well then he will become much for famous which will mean my signed copy that is the first ever paperback he were signed for a reader (he even wrote that in the book!) will be worth a lot more. Not that I would ever dream of selling it…

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