Kazuo Ishiguro “Never Let Me Go”: A Book Review

Here is a review of the famous novel written by a Nobel Prize winner in literature Kazuo Ishiguro. Check the most interesting concepts that we found in this book.

The Moments of Eternity Instead of Local Context


Last year the people who were interested in the worldwide literature process had exceptional reasons to rejoice, as the Nobel Prize was given to the writer who had an exclusively poetic talent for prose. An Englishman of Japanese origin, Kazuo Ishiguro has already written many novels. Among them, the most famous ones are: ‘The Artist of the Floating World’, ‘The Remains of the Day’, ‘When We Are Orphans’. Ishiguro is the writer who can make the local contexts abstract to help specific countries and societies concentrate on the eternal meanings, that every person will read, regardless of the historical, cultural or social background. The paradox is that this feature does not deprive his novels of their particular taste of nuclear ash from his native town Nagasaki. This ‘taste of ash’ does not disappear at all, it is simply metamorphosed in somewhat similar to brown cane sugar – bitter and sweet at the same time.

The Sweet Memories on the Backdrop of Dystopia

The novel "Do not Let Me Go", a screenplay of which was written in 2010 by Mark Romanek, is the story of the three people who were created by the latest technology of cloning. By the time they are adults, they become body donors for those who have paid their creation. At first sight it sounds like an incredibly terrible dystopia, doesn’t it? However, there is nothing like this in Ishiguro’s text. On the contrary, when you start reading the novel, the author immerses you in the gentle memories of the main character Kathy G., in the tiny world of the beautiful suburban school of Hailsham, where children draw paintings, play football, sing in the choir, find friends and loved ones. The biggest dream of each student is to create a piece of art which would be worthy to be exhibited in the mysterious private gallery of the lady headmaster. Only in the end of the story the main character finds out what this gallery really is.

Friendship Instead of Parenting

Katy, Ruth and Tommy are three very different personalities, which does not prevent them from being what it is called ‘true friends’. ‘True’ means not only supportive and helpful to each other, but also sometimes cruel while slapping or even betraying one another to re-find the trust. After all, there will still be a snatch for you in the end. This is the story of existence which excludes parents as a fact of life. Instead of parents, the characters have their friends’ warmth and a full understanding that they will not live even to thirty years.

Two Types of Females

Strong Females

Katie and Ruth are two very different women's images. Katie is strong and inclined to contemplation, for her the greatest pleasure is a self-cognition and cognition of the world around. It is her tender voice that tells this intimate story of three lives. Ruth is a bright leader who inspires the people around her to take courage to do what they want to do and what she wants them to do. Her energy is capable of taking on what its nature aspires to. Tommy is the image of a young male with a deep, sensuous perception of life, who goes a long way to find himself in drawing and, in the end, finds his own creative art-expression after a long journey.

The Happiness as a Choice

Watching the relationships between these three friends, sometimes it is not easy to distinguish where it transforms from friendship into love. It may seem that the life of a person who understands that she was created just for her kidney or liver is miserable and deprived of any kind of humanity. However, the care and intellectual sensuality that envelops the main heroine’s entire narrative leads you, in the end, to the paradoxical thoughts: the human beings, created as clones, can live in a much more poetic way than people from a natural society, where the creating of masks and shells is so habitual.

The Impressive Absence of a Protest

What is striking in this novel is the immanent absence of any protest in such a dystopian reality. You seem to be waiting for a moment, when the infinite and energetic Ruth puts off a video, organizes a demonstration or anything to stop this unbearable mockery that the heroes take with an amazing humility and understanding, which, though, is deprived of slavish psychology or masochism. Nevertheless, this story is not about protest. And, though you sometimes hate the author for this, it is a story about an existential meditation, where an awareness of the transience and a necessity of the rebellion pours into a poetic serving to yourself and your loved ones. It resembles the outlook of the countries of the Sunrise in details.

This novel is about the world that cries for help, swarmed into a bottle which floats just for the sake of floating, without any hope that it will be found. This text is about the world burned out by a rationalist bomb with its devastating human origins. However, somewhere on the shores of Nagasaki you can find a tape recorder with the song of the favorite singer "Do not let me go." For even if all the buildings on the planet are destroyed, the humans will not remain homeless because our warmest house is another human.

Rated 4.5 | 873 votes.

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