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Culture > Entertainment

Chaos Walking: The Knife of Never Letting Go: Book Review

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Coastal Carolina chapter.

Could you even imagine a world where there are no women? What if the remaining life on the planet of men and animal’s thoughts were broadcasted out into the world? That is precisely what is described in the book: Chaos Walking: The Knife of Never Letting Go. You may have heard this title before because it was made into a movie starring Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley with appearances from other well-known stars such as Nick Jonas and David Oyelowo.

The movie recently came out in theaters, but as I was strolling through Barnes and Nobles one day, I saw the book version sitting on the shelf. I think it’s crucial to read the written version before seeing the theatrical version because, in my opinion, the book is always better. Books always paint the complete picture where movies usually leave out some of my favorite scenes that dive deeper into specific characters’ backgrounds. I purchased the book and read it in a day. I could not put it down. It was exciting and held me from one page to the next. After I finished, I realized it was the first in a trilogy, so I immediately hopped online to purchase the following two books. Chaos Walking is a series with the first book being: The Knife of Never Letting Go, followed by the sequel: The Ask and The Answer, then finally: Monster of Men.

The first book takes place in a small town where there are around 150 men. Everyone can hear everyone’s thoughts which they refer to as noise. Apparently, a deadly virus wiped out the women. The virus gave men and animals the problem of having their thoughts projected for everyone around to see. We read the story from Todd Hewitt’s perspective, who was just a baby when the disease broke out. All he has ever known is a life with no women and a mind consumed by trying to control his own noise to stay out of trouble while trying not to dwell on the noise of everything surrounding him. He longs for peace and quiet.

The story picks up exceptionally quickly, keeping readers on their toes. We soon learn that everything is not as it seems. Todd does not know who to trust, and the date that he becomes a man is approaching. Becoming a man and the steps that need to be taken to achieve that goal are something genuinely sinister. Todd’s town has a plan for him, and he is in no hurry to find out what it is. Todd is pushed to flee his village, but everything gets more complicated when a girl appears with no noise. Todd’s whole life is a lie, and we get to see all the secrets, deceit, and betrayal unravel.

The book is well-written and even incorporates exciting aspects such as a couple of pages consumed by the noise that appears to Todd Hewitt from the townsmen. In the story, we learn that it was hard to teach boys whose thoughts were projected out into the world, so the mayor outlawed school, books, and writing. As a result, Todd has a heavy country accent, and certain words like preparation are spelled exactly how they sound. There are not enough words misspelled to bother the reader, but the few words are a nice touch that enhances the storyline in painting how Todd has been raised and what knowledge he has been given.

I highly recommend this book and plan to see it in theaters.


Grace Thomas

Coastal Carolina '21

Grace Kelli Thomas is a senior Forensic Psychology major with a minor in Women and Gender Studies. She enjoys reading, painting, and helping others. Her goals in life are to be a counselor for at-risk youth or on a college campus and eventually a college professor. She also hopes to participate in activism and be an author.