Tag Archives: kazuo ishiguro

A Look Back: Three Star Books

2020 is coming to an end, and for my own curiosity, I thought I would share the books that were good books, but not quite my favorite in the last 12 months. I count December 2019 in this collection since I’m obviously not done with December 2020 yet. This is my final list of the year. These books were ones I didn’t truly connect to, but had enough merit that I felt someone else might enjoy them.

#IMomSoHard – I read this book by Kristin Hensley and Jen Smedley on a whim from my library at the end of 2019. While it had some funny parts to it, it was a bit tone deaf when it came to infertility and pregnancy loss.

Followers – Debut novel by Megan Angelo. Divided into a present-day and a future point after a cataclysmic event called The Spill, we follow Orla and her roommate, Floss, as they chase fame and fortune through social media. The writing was pretty fluid, but I felt like the characters lacked depth.

Born in Fire – Nora Roberts romance novel. I’m not big into romance, but I inherited this three book trilogy from my grandmother. Apparently, I have read this author before and didn’t remember, but the big problem I had with this story were the problematic relationships that edged on the side of abuse and codependency. Set in Ireland (whichc is my favorite part about the book), Margaret Mary is a glass artist who is also quite the loner, but her world is turned upside down when an art dealer takes an interest in her work.

Mask of Shadows – Debut novel by Linsey Miller. I met the author at a Farmer’s market and decided to give her book a try. The story follows a gender-fluid character named Sal who enters an assassin contest. There were a lot of characters in this contest which made it difficult to follow, but the last part of the book was the most interesting part, once a lot of the minor characters are killed off.

Never Let Me Go – A Kazuo Ishiguro novel set in a boarding school for special students, this book was overall just unfortunate for me. But if you like science fiction, a little romance, and a lot of flashback foreshadowing until everything is revealed in the end, I would recommend it.

Any books you read this year that weren’t quite bad but weren’t quite for you?

Never Let Me Go: A Review

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
My rating: 3.5 of 5 star

I wish I liked this book more. I don’t know if it was because it was mostly in the first person or it was science fiction, but I just couldn’t get into the story. I do like some science fiction, and I’m sure I have liked books written in the first person (although, lately, the latter does seem to be a problem). I was just not really invested in these characters.

Kathy is a carer. In particular, she cares for donors until they complete. All of that process is what this book is about. As she goes about her job, she reminisces about her life growing up at a boarding school/group home called Hailshem. She has two friends, Ruth and Tommy. The three friends are pretty naive and passive, even when big pieces of information are dropped on them. Most of the book is in flashback.

The story seemed to drag in parts, but each chapter seems to set up the next which helps with pacing. The story definitely builds on itself with excellent foreshadowing. The twists were not particularly big or surprising. But because of the pacing, I would put the book down for a bit, and when I picked it back up, I wouldn’t remember some details so it would affect my reading.

The back of the book says that it is heartbreaking. While it is a sad book and just frustrating a lot of the time, I didn’t cry at the end of the book. I just felt that it was all unfortunate. But I did find it an interesting look at how people accept their lot in life sometimes with passivity and apathy. Sometimes the idea of revolting and fighting back just doesn’t occur to them.

While this book wasn’t really for me, if you like science fiction, a little romance, and a lot of flashback until everything is revealed at the end (with so many clues in between), you might like this book.

There is profanity in the book. There are both conversations about sex and actual sex scenes, but they seem to represent their innocence and naivete. Not much violence. There is talk about death and dying as a major part of the book. Some bullying and tantrums as well.