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The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
Narrated by Nick Podehl

Published by Candlewick Press

Audiobook by Candlewick on Brilliance Audio

Pages: 496

Ages: Young Adult

Publishers Summary: Todd Hewitt is the only boy in a town of men. Ever since the settlers were infected with the Noise germ, Todd can hear everything the men think, and they hear everything he thinks. Todd is just a month away from becoming a man, but in the midst of the cacophony, he knows that the town is hiding something from him — something so awful Todd is forced to flee with only his dog, whose simple, loyal voice he hears too. With hostile men from the town in pursuit, the two stumble upon a strange and eerily silent creature: a girl. Who is she? Why wasn’t she killed by the germ like all the females on New World? Propelled by Todd’s gritty narration, readers are in for a white-knuckle journey in which a boy on the cusp of manhood must unlearn everything he knows in order to figure out who he truly is.

How many days? 30, 28, 25…and counting. Counting down to what? The day Todd Hewitt becomes a man. In Prentisstown your entire life revolves around this one day, the day you become a man, and for as long as Todd can remember that’s all he’s been able to think about. And everyone knows it. On New World every man still alive was infected with a virus that spread upon their arrival, killing every woman and opening the thoughts of every male to anyone. It’s a constant stream of noise where ever you find men congregated and because of this they all know Todd is counting down. It’s not until he stumbles upon something so unbelievable, a girl, that he is able to consider something else. Is it possible that his life isn’t what he was told? Are the stories true? What happens from that point on is a journey into who Todd truly is and what becoming a man truly means.

Wow! This was an incredible experience for me. First off, you should know, I listen to audio books and quite like them. Though, in the past almost every audio book I’ve read has been pretty average in terms of narration. Not bad by any means, but just generally okay. Well, I’ve been raving about this book ever since I finished listening to it. Why? Because, not only is the story unbelievably incredible, but the narration for the audio book is stunning! The narrator, Nick Podehl, does things with the story that only a trained a very well qualified actor could do. With at least three main characters (and multiple other supporting characters and animals) he stops at nothing to draw you into each, making it almost hard to believe he narrates all three, but he does. From Todd Hewitt, the main character, to Viola, the lead female character (yes, a female voice that sounds female!) to my absolute favorite character Manchee, who just happens to be a dog, Nick Podehl is unbelievable. Who knew there were people out there who could be so absolutely convincing? I’m officially a fan and have proceeded to listen to everything that he’s recorded that I can get my hands on. And I’d absolutely suggest you do the same! I promise you will not be disappointed!

Onto the story! This story is more than I could have ever expected. Not only is the world building just perfect, it’s everything about the world that makes it so incredible. Not only do the men “think aloud” (constantly I might add, there is no “off” switch), but the animals do as well. Every animal, from cows to horses to sheep, you name it – it thinks out loud. Such a great idea! I know I’ve seen it done on TV shows before, but it just doesn’t translate as well as it does in The Knife of Never Letting Go. The way Patrick Ness wrote it makes the “noise” blend in with the landscape of the story, making it beautiful at times and terrifying at others. Which also is the same for the emotions expressed through the characters. They become a larger part of a painting rather than singular feelings that resolve within moments. It’s truly incredible.

Todd Hewitt is a “typical” teen. If you could really call growing up with no mother, surrounded by men’s “noise” and the youngest in the only colony left on the planet “typical.” What I loved about Todd though, was that despite everything that happened to him, including being forced to leave his home, he is still true to who he really is. He’s innocent and honest in a world of men with the desire to crush his hopes and make him one of their own. I adored his character and though the story gets a bit violent at times it’s one I cannot wait to share with my son. Boys need good role models, especially in fiction and Todd is just the guy. He’s not perfect, but he tries to do the best he possibly can.

I’ve honestly only touched on a few of my favorite aspects of The Knife of Never Letting Go. This is a story that I’m positive nearly everyone who reads would enjoy. I’d especially recommend listening to the audio book, even for those of you who’ve already read the printed version. It’s beyond worth it! An incredible beginning to a dystopian trilogy that should not be missed and should absolutely be listened to, The Knife of Never Letting Go is an epic adventure for readers everywhere. Go with Todd Hewitt on his journey into manhood as he uncovers the truth about who he is and who he truly wants to become.

The1stdaughter Recommends: Ages 15 and up. A dystopian trilogy that should be read and listened to by all.
Be aware some violence is present and as such may be cause for concern if listening with small children present.

Stop by tomorrow for an incredible interview with non-other than Nick Podehl, the narrator for The Knife of Never Letting Go, and recent recipient of two Odyssey Honor Awards!

Today’s post is part of our month long celebration of Candlewick Press for our monthly feature “Book Publishers 101“. Make sure to stop by the Candlewick Press Site for more information about this title and more. For more information about our Book Publishers 101 feature take a look at this month’s opening post.

Also make sure to take a look at our Giveaways Page for the four giveaways being sponsored by Candlewick press throughout this month!

Find Candlewick Press on Twitter and Facebook!
Thank you so much to Candlewick Press on Brilliance Audio for providing an audiobook version of this novel for review!
Purchasing products by clicking through the links in this post will provide us a modest commission through our affiliate relationship with
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18 Responses to Audio Book Review: The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

  1. Manchee was also my favorite character! I’m currently listening to the second book on Audio–the narration is really top-notch and it’s a riveting story.

  2. Raquel says:

    I love love love how Nick Podehl narrated this. Probably the most entertaining audio book I’ve ever listened to. Sometimes, totally at random, his voice will pop up saying “Your noise reveals you Todd Hewitt” or bark “Poo Todd, poo!”. LOL!

    I’m so glad that you enjoyed this book and the narration as much as I did! 🙂

  3. Ooooooo I’ve been looking for a good audio. I get easily annoyed with voices. This sounds like one even I would dig.

  4. As I have mentioned before, I loved listening to this amazing series and recommend it to anyone who loves listening to books, or have never tried an audio. As soon as I finished The Knife of Never Letting I immediately listen to The Ask and the Answer and then Monsters of Men. Like you I highly recommend both the books and the audio.

  5. […] to The Chaos Walking Trilogy you are certainly missing out! Just take a look at my review of The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness, where I gush about how brilliant the audiobook is. No matter if you enjoy listening to audiobooks […]

  6. My favourite series of the last couple of years, it just gets better and better.

    Definitely going to have to check out the audiobook versions, if they’re as good as they sound!

  7. This was my first dystopian series and I am now hooked on the genre. I absolutely loved these books and cried like a baby over one character in the first installment (those who have read it will know EXACTLY who I mean). I am tempted to re-read with audio books because I am very curious about how “noise” is treated–it seems like such a visual thing.

    • Yes, I balled like a baby in the car, because we were listening to it on a trip…which I might add was rather embarrassing, but it was SO sad!

      You would LOVE the audio! You must try it, because I think it really “makes” the books. Just wonderful!

  8. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Quiana, Danielle Smith. Danielle Smith said: THE Best Audio Book recording ever! My #Review of The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness (@Candlewick) http://bit.ly/fT8WqX #yalit […]

  9. […] listening to my first audiobook, The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness and Narrated by Nick Podehl, from Candlewick on Brilliance Audio I was hooked! I’m absolutely convinced that it has […]

  10. […] the actual plot and storyline I have to talk about the audio recording. Incredible. Again, as with The Knife of Never Letting Go we have the absolutely brilliant Nick Podehl narrating, but what’s different in The Ask and […]

  11. […] The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness narrated by Nick Podehl – The audio version of this is a book I’ve been recommending to anyone and everyone who […]

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