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Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

Never Let Me Go (original 2005; edition 2006)

by Kazuo Ishiguro (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
19,100845163 (3.82)2 / 1259
Hailsham seems like a pleasant English boarding school, far from the influences of the city. Its students are well tended and supported, trained in art and literature, and become just the sort of people the world wants them to be. But, curiously, they are taught nothing of the outside world and are allowed little contact with it. Within the grounds of Hailsham, Kathy grows from schoolgirl to young woman, but it's only when she and her friends Ruth and Tommy leave the safe grounds of the school (as they always knew they would) that they realize the full truth of what Hailsham is.… (more)
Title:Never Let Me Go
Authors:Kazuo Ishiguro (Author)
Info:Vintage (2006), 288 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro (2005)

  1. 433
    The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (readerbabe1984, rosylibrarian, ateolf, browner56)
    browner56: Two chilling, though extremely well written, reminders that liberty, freedom, and self-determination are not idle concepts.
  2. 293
    Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (sanddancer)
  3. 215
    Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood (jessicaskura, readerbabe1984)
  4. 111
    Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (joannasephine)
    joannasephine: A similar society, and a similar obliqueness to the most striking aspects of the story.
  5. 90
    The Children of Men by P. D. James (Yells)
  6. 90
    Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick (absurdeist)
  7. 102
    Under the Skin by Michel Faber (Medellia, SqueakyChu)
  8. 80
    The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist (infiniteletters, bookcrushblog)
  9. 93
    The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Monika_L)
  10. 61
    Unwind by Neal Shusterman (VictoriaPL, meggyweg, ahappybooker, LAKobow)
    ahappybooker: Similar themes of dystopia and vivisection
    LAKobow: This series also deals with dystopian organ donation
  11. 20
    The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer (jennyellen22)
  12. 10
    Thirteen by Richard K. Morgan (WildMaggie)
    WildMaggie: A thriller and a tragic romance--both authors explore the ethics of people created for specific purposes from the perspectives of those created individuals.
  13. 10
    Meat by Joseph D'Lacey (hoddybook)
    hoddybook: The subject matter of both involves a dystopian future in which some people are more worthy of support than others. Ishiguro is more genteel than D'Lacey. Unless you really want to know what's in your daily pinta, I'd give Meat a miss, on the other hand...… (more)
  14. 10
    The Testament of Jessie Lamb by Jane Rogers (Nickelini)
  15. 10
    We by Yevgeny Zamyatin (joannasephine)
  16. 32
    The Unconsoled by Kazuo Ishiguro (Chenga)
  17. 21
    The Pesthouse by Jim Crace (urania1)
    urania1: If you enjoy dystopian fiction or long for "literary" science fiction, read this book. It deals with the big questions, namely can people retain their humanity in dehumanizing conditions?
  18. 00
    Borderliners by Peter Høeg (bluepiano)
    bluepiano: Other children in another school on the shady side of the street who are unwittingly being trained to benefit society at large.
  19. 11
    Coma by Robin Cook (absurdeist)
  20. 11
    We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Though it is less witty than We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves, Never Let Me Go is another poignant and insightful story about biological experimentation and human identity. Both novels feature lyrical prose, well-developed characterization, and haunting tones of melancholy.… (more)

(see all 33 recommendations)

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» See also 1259 mentions

English (807)  Dutch (8)  German (6)  French (5)  Spanish (5)  Italian (3)  Swedish (2)  Galician (1)  Japanese (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  Finnish (1)  Catalan (1)  Norwegian (1)  All languages (842)
Showing 1-5 of 807 (next | show all)
"Non Lasciarmi" è un romanzo che piega i generi letterari a proprio piacimento, lo si può leggere come un romanzo di formazione, come una distopia o, come fa lo scrittore americano Ramsey Campbell, come un horror. Possiamo essere d'accordo con una qualunque di queste categorizzazioni, ma l'autore riesce comunque a trascenderle tutte rendendo la sua opera qualcosa di diverso.
Nonostante la complessità della sua collocazione, "Non Lasciarmi" può essere considerato romanzo facile, da divorare in un paio di notti di lettura compulsiva, ma quando il lettore abbasserà il libro dopo averne letto l'ultima riga, non potrà fare altro che fissare il vuoto per qualche minuto scuotendo lentamente la testa, turbato a vita. ( )
  JoeProtagoras | Jan 28, 2021 |
My opinion of this book changed many times while I was reading it. Interesting (if basic) concept, moderately interesting characters, slow-moving plot.

The way the story was organized (the rambling and somewhat cyclical narration) often annoyed me, but in the end I think it was a good choice. It served to endear the clone narrator to the reader, to make it seem like someone was casually telling you the story of her life, as she approached the beginning of her death. It might have worked better as an audiobook, but in text, it was not my favorite approach. I wanted to stop listening to Kath every time the she said, "that's why I was so [emotion] about what happened next," or "but to explain that, I'll have to go back several weeks."

My only real "problem" with this book is that I never enjoy coming-of-age stories, and despite the speculative fiction element, that's all the story was. ( )
  ctanons | Jan 26, 2021 |
Dithering between 2 and 3 stars. I read this because I heard the author on the radio and he sounds like a really nice man, and he is obviously well regarded. However I was pretty disappointed. You can guess the direction and the central point of the book as soon as the word 'donation' is used - which is page one. So no mystery there. He writes well but it's pretty repetitive and the tone never varies. Yes the protagonist is looking back, from a single point in her life, but you'd think her mind would be a bit more than a dull monotone. The worst problem is that he does not construct a world that is believable in any way and even within the bounds of what he does construct you keep yelling at him that the characters wouldn't behave like that. And the worst worst problem is that there is no politics. You can't center your book on this issue and get away without that. ( )
  Ma_Washigeri | Jan 23, 2021 |
Maybe none of us really understand what we've lived through, or feel we've had enough time.

Kath was a student in an exclusive boarding school in an imagined late 20th century England. Her narrative focuses on her long-lasting relationships with fellow students Ruth and Tommy. Through a series of dreamy flashbacks, she tells us how they discovered their purpose in society and struggled to find meaning in their lives.

Kazuo Ishiguro's novel highlights a moral dilemma, but I don't want to include a "spoiler" so I'll just say be prepared to think deeply about what it means to be human.

Around the year in 52 books challenge notes:
#44. A book whose title contains a negative

Ultimate Popsugar reading challenge notes:
#17. A book that has the same title as a song ( )
  Linda_Louise | Jan 20, 2021 |
When i first started reading it and hit the halfway mark, i must admit, i was underwhelmed. I was wondering what all the hype was about. Like most people who rated it 3 stars and below, i found the conversational style a tad of a chore to follow. I notice though that some of you did not even finish the book, that's a shame because i felt very differently as i moved towards the end of the book.

I realized that Ishiguro was doing certain very skillful things with his writing. By virtue of the first person narrative, we are pegged to Kathy's perspective and are always as clueless as she is. The one thing that made me realize that I needed to pay attention to what was not being said was this simple fact: she never said she loved Tommy. All that she did was cry when Ruth apologized. That was all the answer we needed.

The style and innocent start fooled me, i was taken for a slow climb that would result in an emotional plunge. Much like the very thing that makes the story especially painful; a slow, idyllic and innocent start before moving on to a more balanced state of being that recalls innocence lost and the final struggle to come to terms with mortality. ( )
  verkur | Jan 8, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 807 (next | show all)
Ishiguro is extremely good at recreating the special, oppressive atmosphere of school (and any other institution, for that matter)—the cliques that form, the covert rivalries, the obsessive concern with who sat next to whom, who was seen talking to whom, who is in favor at one moment and who is not.
added by jburlinson | editNew York Review of Books, Anita Desai (pay site) (Nov 22, 2005)
The eeriest feature of this alien world is how familiar it feels. It's like a stripped-down, haiku vision of children everywhere, fending off the chaos of existence by inventing their own rules.
"Never Let Me Go" is marred by a slapdash, explanatory ending that recalls the stilted, tie-up-all-the loose-ends conclusion of Hitchcock's "Psycho." The remainder of the book, however, is a Gothic tour de force that showcases the same gifts that made Mr. Ishiguro's 1989 novel, "The Remains of the Day," such a cogent performance.
This extraordinary and, in the end, rather frighteningly clever novel isn't about cloning, or being a clone, at all. It's about why we don't explode, why we don't just wake up one day and go sobbing and crying down the street, kicking everything to pieces out of the raw, infuriating, completely personal sense of our lives never having been what they could have been.
added by mikeg2 | editThe Guardian, John Harrison (Feb 26, 2005)

» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ishiguro, Kazuoprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bützow, HeleneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fox, KerryNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kriek, BarthoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Landor, RosalynNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Novarese, PaolaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Lorna and Naomi
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My name is Kathy H.
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Hailsham seems like a pleasant English boarding school, far from the influences of the city. Its students are well tended and supported, trained in art and literature, and become just the sort of people the world wants them to be. But, curiously, they are taught nothing of the outside world and are allowed little contact with it. Within the grounds of Hailsham, Kathy grows from schoolgirl to young woman, but it's only when she and her friends Ruth and Tommy leave the safe grounds of the school (as they always knew they would) that they realize the full truth of what Hailsham is.

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Book description
At the age of thirty-one, Kathy H. is coming to the end of her time as a career – a milestone that prompts her to reflect on her unusual life. She begins, naturally, with her childhood at Hailsham, where she and her friends Ruth and Tommy negotiated the lessons and Exchanges set by their guardians, as well as the constant social pressures of school life. As her recollections progress, however, Kathy must take care not to delve too deeply into the tangled knot of her own emotions. The past holds no refuge for her; even since childhood, the knowledge of what the future holds has always been there, deep down – and some truths are too terrible to be confronted.

AR Level 6.0, 15 pts
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