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Never Let Me Go

This book can be downloaded and read in iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.


From the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature and author of the Booker Prize–winning novel The Remains of the Day comes a devastating 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 modern classic.

From Publishers Weekly

Jan 31, 2005 – Like Ishiguro's previous works (The Remains of the Day; When We Were Orphans), his sixth novel is so exquisitely observed that even the most workaday objects and interactions are infused with a luminous, humming otherworldliness. The dystopian story it tells, meanwhile, gives it a different kind of electric charge. Set in late 1990s England, in a parallel universe in which humans are cloned and raised expressly to "donate" their healthy organs and thus eradicate disease from the normal population, this is an epic ethical horror story, told in devastatingly poignant miniature. By age 31, narrator (and clone) Kathy H has spent nearly 12 years as a "carer" to dozens of "donors." Knowing that her number is sure to come up soon, she recounts in excruciating detail the fraught, minute dramas of her happily sheltered childhood and adolescence at Hailsham, an idyllic, isolated school/orphanage where clone-students are encouraged to make art and feel special. Protected (as is the reader, at first) from the full truth about their eventual purpose in the larger world, "we were always just too young to understand properly the latest piece of information. But of course we'd take it in at some level, so that before long all this stuff was there in our heads without us ever having examined it properly." This tension of knowing-without-knowing permeates all of the students' tense, sweetly innocent interactions, especially Kath's touchingly stilted love triangle with two Hailsham classmates, manipulative Ruth and kind-hearted Tommy. In savoring the subtle shades of atmosphere and innuendo in these three small, tightly bound lives, Ishiguro spins a stinging cautionary tale of science outpacing ethics.

Customer Reviews


Never Let Me Go is so relatable, despite its sci-fi undertones. I say undertones because of its subtlety in weaving in the sci-fi story. I love sci-fi but even if you don't, you'll love this novel because it'll remind you of growing up, feelings of being an adolescent and the desire to be accepted and the flaming knot in your stomach when you are not. With all the craziness that goes on in life these days, it's almost nostalgic being transported back to a time when who you sat next to at lunch time was the biggest worry in the world. Ah, simple times. Wonderful novel!

Worthwhile Read

After seeing the movie, I felt compelled to read the book, hoping it had greater dialogue and insight than the movie. The movie was wonderful though I did not like the older Tommy's character and I dislike voiceover. The book, though slightly disappointing, was well worth the money spent. I had only wished more of the book was written as well as the final chapter - imagistic and lovely. Looking forward to exploring more titles by the same author however.

A masterpiece of knowing and not knowing

Ishiguro's masterful writing of this book only makes it even better. With an overarching theme of the morality regarding clones and ultimately, stem-cell research, Ishiguro writes a novel that is in many ways relatable to the reader. What gives this novel a disquieting feel is our acceptance of what is presented in the book. While we have questions about events in the book, when they are answered we never object to the answer and actually accept what we are told. Ishiguro keeps us in a similar state of knowledge to the donors who, whenever they are told something new, accept it as though they had always known the answer. The reader, when they finish the book, accepts it as what it is, as if they always knew the book would be that way. Yet we never question the reason as to why we read the book if we knew what was going to happen.

Never Let Me Go
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Sci-Fi & Fantasy
  • Published: Apr 05, 2005
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 304 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings