The Knife Of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness (or… I Heart Patrick Ness!)

Todd Hewitt’s life for as long as he remembers has been in the New World.  When his parents came to the New World , then renamed Prentiss Town, a virus wiped out all the females, caused all animals to be able to talk, and all mens thoughts come right out of there in the open for all to see and hear.  This constant mind chatter is known as The Noise and Todd has never known silence, as his own Noise is always with him.  Nothing is private in Prentiss Town.

Todd, on the verge of becoming thirteen, is the only boy left in the town.  When you turn thirteen, you are said to become a man, and Todd will be the last one in this community to become a man.  He’s not even sure what that means… but he is about twenty days from finding out. 

Then, while out in the woods with his dog, Manchee, Todd discovers something… a skip in the Noise.  Yes, there actually is a silence and now knowing of this, Todd discovers quickly that his own thoughts betray him and soon the whole town knows what he has discovered and his life is in danger.

But why?

“Your Noise Reveals You Todd Hewitt!!!

Now Todd and Manchee are on the run, following the river  and having no idea what is out beyond, but having no choice but to run from the towns people who will not let this last boy go….

“If one of us falls… we all fall.”



This is a book that shows a great example why it is not smart to judge a book by its cover.  Sure, I heard of this book when it was first released in the fall of 2008 the cover did not appeal to me and I passed on it.

Passed on it.  (This could be the story I tell grandchildren some day…. Yup, I passed on one of the best books I ever read”)  You can imagine their big eyes… and the shame… oh the shame…

The Knife Of Never Letting Go came back on my radar when I seen the awards being won by the third book in this series, Monsters Of Men.  I was instantly drawn in, not connecting Monsters Of Men to this book at all until I dived in further…

here is where the shame begins…

Upon writing a post about my desire to follow this series, the comments started coming in about how amazing The Knife Of Never Letting Go was and how I had better have all three books at once as each is left with an incredible cliff hanger that you will not want to wait to move on from…. so on sheer push and book peer pressures (oh you know who you are :razz:) … I ordered all three books at once….

then sat waiting for them to arrive, hoping I had not made a mistake….

really… sci fi, not my thing.

When I started Knife Of Never Letting Go and in short time I was reading conversations with a talking dog, I thought, “hoo boy… I am not sure if I will get into this,” and then…

I did.

Big time.

I always enjoy when a story line goes outside the cookie cutter shapes that many books follow today.  A leap so to speak, of breaking the mold.  Patrick Ness did just that.  I would not call this book so much sci Fi as adventure dystopia.  At, may I add, it’s finest.

Within pages I was totally following this new character Todd, and had no problem at all with the talking dog Manchee… in fact, Manchee really (REALLY REALLY) grew on me.  Fast paced, as I like my books, soon I was running with Todd and Manchee, discovering the Silence, and feeling the dangers that lay ahead… and behind.

I found this book to be unique, fascinating, and ranks for me higher than Hunger Games (which is soooo rave worthy!).  I  can’t quite put my finger on what it is that I loved about this book so much, other than the characters feel real, flesh and blood real, dark and spooky real, painfully real.  Even the writing (and those of you who have read this before me know what I mean)… pages of Noise, impacted me as brilliant.  Font size…. touched me also.  Pages of words… let loose feelings of emotion. 


My recommendations if you are going to dip into this series –

1.  Set aside some time to READ… really I did not want to put the book down.

2.  Make sure you have book two close at hand – the end of this one will leave you wanting to dive right into the next (The Ask And The Asking)


A good 20 tear read… (kleenex also a must) I can not recommend this book enough.  You do not want to be on the outside looking in on this one. 

Amazon Rating

Goodreads Review

The 2011 WHERE Are You Reading Map has been updated to include The Knife Of Never Letting Go

Purchased from


37 thoughts on “The Knife Of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness (or… I Heart Patrick Ness!)

  1. YAY! I loooooooove these books. Good call on ordering all 3 at once. I borrowed them from the library and when I finished book one I was all “oh no! where’s the next one?!” Thankfully when I returned book one I found book two still sitting on the shelf. Whew. And by then I was smart enough to put book three on hold before I finished the second book. I, too, hold this series higher than the Hunger Games. It’s just… so amazing. And the characters are wonderful and complex. Ah, now I want to read the books again!

    Also – How many times during this book did you want to shout: How is he still alive??

  2. Better than The Hunger Games????? How is that even possible?

    This is so funny, as based on your raving about this book in the comments on my blog yesterday I bought it while I was out today and i have it with me right now. I wasn’t planning on reading it just yet but…………

  3. Yay! You finally loved it. This might just be one of the best books ever written. You will have to read his latest book – A Monster Calls. It will break your heart.

  4. I bought this book when it first came out (I liked the cover :). Guess I am going to dig it out of the bottom of my tbr pile. I am listening to The Hunger Games right now. Maybe its a good thing dh is going away this weekend.

  5. Good advice to have all three books on hand. I almost passed on this series as well, glad I listened to my fellow bloggers. Book three is next for me!

  6. The Chaos Walking series is one of my favorites of all time. I absolutely adored it from the get-go, and honestly the story kept me enthralled all the way through. It is that perfect combination on entertainment and intelligence. Glad you liked the first!

  7. I knew you would love these! I have been an evangelist for these books – getting my dad and my best friend’s husband to read them. My husband, too – although he almost stopped at a certain point in book one because he was a bit traumatized. (Don’t want to spoil it for anyone.) He has since continued and is halfway through The Ask and the Answer.

  8. Well, I guess I’m going to have to get these books! Maybe not for awhile, but they’re now on my wish radar, so who knows? Are they on Kindle?

    Thanks for sharing…and I get that you really, really loved this book! LOL

  9. Thank you for this post! I’ve been craving a great book to read. This sounds perfect. I’m heading to Amazon to order!

  10. I loved Manchee!!! And I thought the books get better and better as they went along … .so if you loved this one so much, I bet you are going to fall head over heels for the next two!!! It is a great strong series and I think it is better than The Hunger Games too. There is also a prequel called “The New World” that is available (I got it for free from Amazon at one point) for ebooks. You might want to check it out.

  11. I always get the biggest, goofiest grin on my face when I read where someone else has succumbed to the magic that is Patrick Ness. Yippee!

    After you finish the series, get your hands on A Monster Calls. Talk about “a good 20 tear read…” You’ll want to buy stock in Kleenex.

  12. I am so beyond thrilled that you loved this book! It truly is such a brilliant series. Patrick Ness is amazing! I now want to read the actual printed version, since I originally only listened to this series on audiobook which you need to do as well. I think you’d be astounded at how well Nick Podehl narrates the noise. Just wow!

    Yay! I can’t tell you how happy I am to hear you gave it another chance! Wahoo!

  13. Great review! So what about someone who isn’t a fan of YA but loved The Hunger Games? Do you think I’d like this one as well? I am intrigued by this one.

  14. Wow, what a review! I rarely add books to my TBR list anymore just because it is over 300 books (plus the many dozens sitting on my bookshelf waiting), and there just isn’t TIME to get to them all…but I am adding this series to my list!

    Sounds like something my 17-year old son would love also.

    Thanks for the recommendation!


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