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Never Let Me Go Audiobook

Never Let Me Go

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: Listening to Never Let Me Go was like entering a literary dream-state where, bit by bit, reality shifts and the truth is revealed. Rosalyn Landor is less a narrator and more a storyteller who brought me along as the characters uncovered the essential mysteries of their lives. —Steve Feldberg

Publisher's Summary

From the Booker Prize-winning author of The Remains of the Day and When We Were Orphans, comes an unforgettable edge-of-your-seat mystery that is at once heartbreakingly tender and morally courageous about what it means to be human.

Hailsham seems like a pleasant English boarding school, far from the influences of the city. Its students are well tended and supported, trained in art and literature, and become just the sort of people the world wants them to be. But, curiously, they are taught nothing of the outside world and are allowed little contact with it.

Within the grounds of Hailsham, Kathy grows from schoolgirl to young woman, but it's only when she and her friends Ruth and Tommy leave the safe grounds of the school (as they always knew they would) that they realize the full truth of what Hailsham is.

Never Let Me Go breaks through the boundaries of the literary novel. It is a gripping mystery, a beautiful love story, and also a scathing critique of human arrogance and a moral examination of how we treat the vulnerable and different in our society. In exploring the themes of memory and the impact of the past, Ishiguro takes on the idea of a possible future to create his most moving and powerful book to date.

©2005 Kazuo Ishiguro; (P)2005 Random House, Inc. Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • National Book Critics Circle Award Nominee, 2005, Fiction
  • Alex Award Winner, 2006

"Stunningly brilliant fiction....A masterpiece of craftsmanship that offers an unparalleled emotional experience." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Ishiguro's elegant prose and masterly ways with characterization make for a lovely tale of memory, self-understanding, and love." (Library Journal)
"So exquisitely observed that even the most workaday objects and interactions are infused with a luminous, humming otherworldliness.....Ishiguro spins a stinging cautionary tale of science outpacing ethics." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (3284 )
5 star
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3.7 (1972 )
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4.2 (1961 )
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    07-19-05
    07-19-05 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dreadful Human Nature"

    I agree with the enthusiasm of the other reviewers. "Dreadful", who thought it was unrealistic, forgets that the principal characters were raised from birth to accept their fates. It's a rare human who would not accept this under these circumstances.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken Chester, NY, USA 05-23-05
    Ken Chester, NY, USA 05-23-05 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dreadful"

    Tedious. Boring. I kept waiting for the pay-off (a meaning, an event, a joke, anything), but there is none. Thought provoking? I guess if you suspend everything you know about human nature you might find the behaviors of these characters plausible, and therefore somehow enlightening.
    I didn't. Complete unmoving and unsatisfying.
    Spare yourself from these "Spare Parts."

    9 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandra Eatonton, GA, USA 06-02-05
    Sandra Eatonton, GA, USA 06-02-05 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
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    1
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    "Depressing"

    Very slow moving. Hard to keep your interest. Impossible plot. So bad I couldn't finish it. Save your money.

    12 of 25 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Soapdude 11-07-15
    Soapdude 11-07-15 Member Since 2015

    Lover of sci-fi, dystopia, and historical fiction. I travel often and listen to audiobooks while driving long hours

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Great story, but we weren't entirely sold"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    The story was wonderful, and we are fans of the dystopian future genre. The book was well written. The time was definitely well spent!


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    As is typical with the genre, we were left with an uneasy feeling at the end. These stories often leave us with the feeling of hopelessness.. Things are not going to be okay!


    Have you listened to any of Rosalyn Landor’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have not, but she performed well.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Most definitely


    Any additional comments?

    There was a love-story element that was quite enjoyable, but this book was definitely not a love-story.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandra 11-01-15
    Sandra 11-01-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Boring"

    I can't figure out what book reviewers were listening to that they described as "stunning", "brilliant", "compelling" and "haunting" . First off I figured out what was happening very soon into the book. Even then I kept expecting something "brilliant" etc but I found myself not even seeing it as a commentary on humanity because the characters were so trivial, self absorbed, one dimensional, whining and, well, just boring. The best part was when it was finally over. The narrator did a fine job given the material but she was monotone for much of the story. I'm not sure it was her fault because it was a monotone story. If you want brilliant listen to something else.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Quillen Kay 08-27-15
    Quillen Kay 08-27-15 Member Since 2013

    The Universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "not a mystery"

    I did not like the story at all. Kind of a sick premise! Uninteresting. No emotion. Fatalistic. Ok, it sucked.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Teresa Okemos, MI, United States 07-15-15
    Teresa Okemos, MI, United States 07-15-15 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    5
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    Story
    "Yawn"

    My recommendation is, don't bother. Clone child grows into clone young adult whose place in the world is to provide organs for humans' transplants. That description is FAR more interesting than this book.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Boyd Anaheim, CA USA 10-29-13
    M. Boyd Anaheim, CA USA 10-29-13 Member Since 2011

    Evil Genius

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    Story
    "This is a horrid read/listen. It's quite bad."
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Better writing. Interesting characters. A plot. A plot would have been nice, I think. Yes, I'm pretty sure a plot would have improved things.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    I haven't made up my mind yet, but I assure you it will never be anything written by Kazuo Ishiguro, ever again. This book was truly mind numbing rubbish.


    Did Rosalyn Landor do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    The narrator was fine.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Dishonor! Dishonor on Kazuo Ishiguro's whole family! Dishonor on Kazuo Ishiguro! Dishonor on his cow! Dishonor on everyone associated with this door stop of a book.


    Any additional comments?

    I now have absolutely no empathy for clones. If I ran into a clone today, I'd vivisect it with a pair of cuticle scissors while whispering "complements of Kazuo Ishiguro". It could just be my dislike for this book talking but, this book was profoundly, exquisitely, gloriously, boringly, bad.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yvonne Southfield, mi, United States 02-04-11
    Yvonne Southfield, mi, United States 02-04-11 Member Since 2015

    I live to ride my bike.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Pass It"

    It is bogged down with reminisces. There is no strength to the story. The reason society desires this service is not presented in a believe manner.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Sheets American Southwest 12-11-10
    M. Sheets American Southwest 12-11-10 Member Since 2013

    Real Name

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Tragedy Milled Down to the Texture of Our Lives"

    The pace of Never Let Me Go is metronomic. As such, the story is woven over a backdrop of slow, rhythmic drone. I have read here that it reads like a girl's diary. Having never read a girl's diary, I can only imagine it, but it may be an apt description. The point is, this droning pace is both deliberate, and essential to the story, and it works extremely well. A key to understanding the characters of the story - Kathy, Ruth and Tommy - is in understanding their place in life, and how normal and unquestioned that place is. It is the understated nature of their plight which leaves the reader/listener moved to the sympathies ultimately evoked. It isn't great tragedy. It's banal tragedy. Just as most tragedies we face in life are. And so it is tragedy milled down to the texture of our lives, and it is believable. The Sci-Fi and Socio-Alternate premises of the story, told in any more bombastic manner, could not possibly be accepted with the sense of truth Ishiguro manages to write. I fully accept the existence, and fates, of these poor creatures as real.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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