Never Let Me Go

Never Let Me Go

eBook - 2005
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From the Booker Prize-winning author of The Remains of the Day comes a devastating new novel of innocence, knowledge, and loss. As children Kathy, Ruth, and Tommy were students at Hailsham, an exclusive boarding school secluded in the English countryside. It was a place of mercurial cliques and mysterious rules where teachers were constantly reminding their charges of how special they were.

Now, years later, Kathy is a young woman. Ruth and Tommy have reentered her life. And for the first time she is beginning to look back at their shared past and understand just what it is that makes them special-and how that gift will shape the rest of their time together. Suspenseful, moving, beautifully atmospheric, Never Let Me Go is another classic by the author of The Remains of the Day .


From the Trade Paperback edition.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2005.
Edition: 1st American ed.
ISBN: 9781400044832
1400044839
Branch Call Number: eBook
Characteristics: 1 online resource (288 p.)
Additional Contributors: Axis 360 (Firm)

Opinion

From Library Staff

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 a... Read More »

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JCLAshleyF Apr 12, 2013

Never Let Me Go is a haunting dystopian novel about the life circumstances of a young woman and her friends. The novel opens with the narrator retelling her experiences and those of her friends at an isolated boarding school in the English countryside. The students have virtually no contact with ... Read More »

Meeting date: June 25, 2013

From the Booker Prize-winning author of The Remains of the Day and When We Were Orphans, comes an unforgettable edge-of-your-seat mystery that is at once heartbreakingly tender and morally courageous about what it means to be human. Hailsham seems like a pleasant English boarding school, far from... Read More »

We're meeting to discuss this book on August 31st, 9 AM, at the Blue Valley Library. Come join us!


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gailjackman
Aug 24, 2017

I did not like this book and only finished it because I wanted to know the ending without cheating by reading ahead. I'm going to quote directly from the library's description of this book so other readers will know somewhat of it's contents before attempting to read as there's barely any conversations and only lots of descriptions.

"As an adult, Kathy re-engages in lapsed friendships with classmates Ruth and Tommy, examining the details of their shared youth and revisiting with growing awareness the clues and anecdotal evidence apparent to them even as youngsters that they were "different" from everyone outside. Ultimately, readers learn that the Hailsham children are clones, raised solely for the purpose of medical harvesting of organs, their lifespan circumscribed by years when they are designated as carers, followed by a short period as active donors, culminating in what is obliquely referred to as 'completion.'"

HCL_staff_reviews Aug 08, 2017

Winner of the Booker Prize for his "Remains of the Day", Ishiguro once again writes about characters that live in a microcosmic world. The story is told by the main character, Kathy H., who is trying to understand the mysterious world she lived in from childhood to young adulthood while attending Hailsham, a private preparatory school. The teachers and guardians sheltered the students from reality, allowing them little contact with the outside world. A very interesting book that questions science, ethics, and being human. — Barb H., Outreach Services

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m0mmyl00
Jun 10, 2017

Kathy and her two closest friends, Tommy and Ruth, are students at a "special" boarding school in England. They are taught by "guardians," who encourage them to live life to the fullest -- to learn, to use art to express themselves, and in their teen years to have sex. (Part of their specialness is that they cannot have children, so there's no danger of pregnancy.) Normal intrigues and drama are described seriously and sensitively. Outward appearance doesn't reveal the source of their specialness, nor do their actions and relationships. Their lives seem pretty normal. Little by little, though, hints are dropped. Looks, under-the-breath comments by the guardians begin to add up to a grotesque reality. These children were cloned from throw-away people, i.e. prostitutes, etc., and are destined to be organ donors; they will ultimately die -- "complete" -- typically after four donations.

It reminds me of the idea I've heard that if you put a frog in cold water and gradually bring it to a boil, he will calmly sit in it and be boiled alive, whereas if you put him in boiling water he will frantically try to escape. These children's calm acceptance of their lot is troubling, largely because I see around me today a calm acceptance of grossly unacceptable treatment of groups of people -- young black men, Muslims, poor people, women of all colors to name a few.

Some of the guardians had an inkling that these were normal human beings, while others doubted they had souls; "they were not even people," in the heinous words of one of Donald Trump's sons.

This book is about the false and harmful practice of identifying a group of people as "others."

Cynthia_N Apr 03, 2017

I always seem to find odd books like this one and I always seem to like them. "Special" children raised in a boarding home. Don't read any spoilers!!

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PearlyBaker
Mar 01, 2017

This novel reminded me of Kurt Vonnegut's take on the meaning of life: "To help each other get through this, whatever this may be." Every character gave their entire lives to this purpose. In essence it will take more than a few angry protests, posts or prepping to impress me. When we start hiding Muslims and Mexicans in our basements to protect families from deportation and separation then I will have faith in humanity again.

s
Soundreader
Feb 18, 2017

Interesting, futuristic drama set in the English countryside. Tale of a woman reflecting on her years growing up in an unusual boarding school for "special" children. I was not quite sure what the overall message that Ishiguro wanted the reader to come away with. Just an unusual story.

AL_LESLEY Nov 16, 2016

A poignant and melancholy portrayal of the lives of those who cannot live and their search for some sort of humanity denied by their very makers. The simplicity of this moving story lends meaning to every passage and allows reflections of our own selves and the justifications we make every day of our lives.

c
cjharwell
Jul 22, 2016

Lost potential. The premise of the story (cloning humans for medical purposes) has potential to be great however it focused on 3 peoples relationship. None of the characters were all that interesting or endearing, there were times when I wondered why they even considered each other friends which is the whole basis of the book. Skip this one.

TSCPL_ChrisB Jun 02, 2016

Never Let Me Go is a simple read, but it is not a simple book. It is about, and from the perspective of, children who through the course of the novel grow into young adults. And therein lies its simplicity: Ishiguro treats these characters as they should be treated--their focus is on popularity, sex, pranks, and the like. Yet throughout the novel, there is a feeling that something darker lies beneath the surface. Who, or perhaps what, these characters are is never hidden; there is not a twist which reveals the truth. It settles in slowly from page one and makes complete sense by the end. But by the end, the complexity has set in. These characters who had seemed so normal were exactly that. And the reality of their fate drops like a hammer on the skull of a lab rat.
This is one of those books which seemed good while I was reading it. I felt interested in the characters' stories, but never really felt entirely connected to them. But as I met those last few pages, I noticed my heart began to speed up and my eyes grew teary. Finally, I began to care. Never Let Me Go is a book which may seem inconsequential at first--an easy read with little backbone--but its resonance lasts long after the final page.

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pokano
May 28, 2016

You might think at first blush that this is another story about a British private school, but it soon becomes obvious that this well-written and engrossing novel involves something very different. I had a hard time putting it down. The book tacitly raises many questions relevant to the intersection of science and society.

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imaginethat
Feb 10, 2011

imaginethat thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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dida
Jan 24, 2010

dida thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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TSCPL_ChrisB Jun 06, 2016

Memories, even your most precious ones, fade surprisingly quickly. But I don’t go along with that. The memories I value most, I don’t ever see them fading.

g
gabsgabba
Jun 09, 2015

“Because maybe, in a way, we didn't leave it behind nearly as much as we might once have thought. Because somewhere underneath, a part of us stayed like that: fearful of the world around us, and no matter how much we despised ourselves for it--unable quite to let each other go.”
― Kazuo Ishiguro, Never Let Me Go

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