Chaos Walking, by Patrick Ness
Updated: Feb 17
The Knife of Never Letting Go, The Ask and The Answer and Monsters of Men are a true triumph of YA fiction.
Giving us a full-blown insight into the difficulties of growing up, without skimming on any detail, Chaos Walking is an earth shattering series for readers of all ages.
Based in another world in the distant future we are introduced in the first book, The Knife of Never Letting Go, to one of our main characters, Todd Hewitt, and it is through him that Ness introduces the customs of this new, and interesting world.
Todd is the last boy in Prentisstown, a very different town from others. Here everyone can hear everyone else’s thoughts in a constant, overwhelming, never-ending Noise.
There is no privacy, no secrets, and no women.
We come in a month before the birthday that will make Todd a man, but Todd unexpectedly stumbles across a spot of silence, complete silence. He realises that Prentisstown has been lying to him, and now he has to run.
This first novel is difficult to get into, not heating up until the second half where Todd meets Viola, a girl from a new colony, and our second main character throughout the series.
Together they run across the country, meeting friends and foes as they go.
Ness manages to create an amazing world where hilarity is mingled with the desperate sting of reality. Once into The Ask and the Answer, where a fatal mistake leads Todd into a trap and separates him from Viola, it is impossible to put these books down.
We are thrown head first into a world where everything is out in the open, making secrets all that more valuable.
We learn dark truths, all of them relating to some greater, and darker side of real life as we know it. In the Ask and The Answer Todd and Viola become part of a powerful resistance undercurrent, and they both loose many of the things they care about to fight for the cause they believe in.
The final novel Monsters of Men is an astonishing conclusion to the series, which will leave you shaking with adrenaline and emotion.
In this final book Ness throws the characters we have come to love into a dangerous and bitter war.
Chaos Walking is a mind-blowing series, it has a depth, imagination and understanding of people that gives it such raw emotion and power that it cannot be forgotten.
We Give Chaos Walking Four Stars
The Knife of Never Letting Go; ISBN – 978-1-4063-2075-6 Cover price - £7.99
The Ask and The Answer; ISBN – 978-1-4063-2247-7 Cover price - £7.99
Monsters of Men; ISBN – 978-1-4063-2612-3 Cover price - £7.99