The Knife Of Never Letting Go

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The Knife Of Never Letting Go

The Knife Of Never Letting Go

By:Patrick Ness

The first thing you find out when yer dog learns to talk is that dogs don't got nothing much to say. Patrick Ness

SettingThe story takes place in a newly colonized planet far from Earth. In fact, it takes 64 years to travel from Earth to New World.The planet is very diverse, with arid deserts and beautiful lush river valleys. The time is somewhere in the future, at a time when Earth has become a dangerous place to live in. Todd lives in a town called Prentisstown.

CharactersTodd Hewitt: The main charctarer. He is a boy around 13/14 who has been raised by adoptive parents.He is brave, but he's not able to kill a man.Viola Eade: She is a girl who is found by Todd. She is a settler and crashed on the planet on a scout ship. Her parents died in the crash. She is around Todd's age.Manchee: He is Todd's dog. Todd initially doesn't want him but eventually learns to love him. Manchee is brave and would do anything for Todd.Benison Moore and Cillian Boyd: They are the adoptive parents of Todd. It is unclear wheter they are romantically involved or not.Davy Prentiss Jr.: He is one of the antagonists. He is the sheriff of Prentisstown. Not much is known about him.Mayor/President Prentiss: Another antagonist. He is the mayor of Prentisstown and new president of New World. He is evil and power hungry,Aaron: Probably the main antagonist. He is the preacher of Prentisstown. He is insane and believes that he will be a saint. He is also very hard to kill and might be non-human.

Conflict and ResolutionThe main conflict in this book is running away from the army and from Aaron. Todd is sent away from Prentisstown by Ben and Cillian, with no explanation. While running away, he finds a girl in the swamp. The thing is, all women died, so how can there be a girl? Todd decides to protect the girl from Aaron and takes her with him. He soon learns that her name is Viola and that she comes from a settler ship. Together, along with Todd's dog Manchee, they run away. They encounter many challenges along the way. At one point, Aaron kidnaps Viola and stabs Todd. Finally, it seems that they have reached safety. Haven should have been the end of their journey, but when they get there, they are greeted by President Prentiss. Viola has been shot by Davy Jr., and Todd agrees to hand himself over as long as they save her. Haven is now called New Prentisstown.

SymbolsThe knife: The knife is a symbol of good and evil and of Todd's journey to manhood. Todd is continously faced with the choice of killing Aaron and every time something holds him back.It physically represents the choice he has to make about what kind of man he will be: the kind Ben wants him to be, or the kind Aaron and the rest of the men of the town want him to be.Todd's mother's journal: The journal is a symbol of hope and of the unknown. There's so much that Todd has to learn in this book, and most of that is written in the journal. It represents Todd's ignorance about his life. It's also a symbol of hope because of the emotional value it has for Todd. It was written by his mother who died very soon after he was born. It protected Todd from Aaron's knife and keeps Todd hoping that there's a better life ahead of him.


ThemeOne of the main themes in this book is violence. Prentisstown, and the men who live in it, are very violent. New World was born out of violence, with a war that slaughtered the native, defenseless people of the planet. To become a man, you must kill another person. Todd consistently stuuggles with what is right and wrong. Viola also has her own struggles with it and ends up killing Aaron. Even Manchee has his own violent moments. This book deals with a lot of powerful themes such as: loss and death, gender equality, racism, religion, and others; but the one that stuck with me the most was the constant question of whether violence can be justified

What I Liked About The BookI really enjoyed the writing in this book. Patrick Ness writes in a very distinct manner, and I love how he writes according to Todd's knowledge. The story was fast-paced and mysterious. The book grabs you right from the beginning and you can't put it down. The plot is very original and interesting and the characters are well-developed. Overall, I really liked this book and I rate it 5/5.