Review of Ishiguro’s “Klara and the Sun”

This is an amazing book (a Christmas present from the little daughter; thanks, little daughter!). I will just post my review from bookwyrm here also.

An amazing book; can I have more stars to give it?

5 stars

This is one of those very rare books that reminds me of what books are at some level all about. That makes me want to go about and knock about two stars off of 99% of my prior book ratings, to make room to properly differentiate this one.

It’s hard to say too much that’s concrete, without giving it away. I was closer to tears at the end of this than I can remember with any book for a long time. Not easy maudlin tears, but deep oh-my-god tears about what a universe this is.

The people are very fully people; the viewpoint character is not a person, but … well, that would be a spoiler also. But the viewpoint it gives her allows Ishiguro to say some amazing and touching and true and thought-provoking things without coming out and saying them (because nothing he could come out and say would say them so well).

Language cannot express truth, I often say; but what I mean is that it can’t explicitly express literal truth. Language, when it’s used with this much expertise, can and does express deep and breathtaking truth.

I need to go spend a few weeks processing this now, I think.

If you haven’t read it yet, I highly recommend that you should.

… and you should.

2 Comments to “Review of Ishiguro’s “Klara and the Sun””

  1. Thanks for recommending Klara and the Sun. One thing that struck me is that Klara’s voice was not at all girlish or feminine. I wouldn’t say this is a flaw, maybe it indicates something about the character, but it bothered me again and again. Rose, the little we heard of her, was to my mind more girlish. I remember a few years ago reading something about how an analysis of word usage and sentence structure and such was fairly accurate in predicting whether the writer was male or female. I wonder what an analysis of Klara’s writing would show.


    • Interesting point! I agree, my impression of her voice isn’t especially gendered. Not that I consider myself very good at telling. :) But an informed analysis and/or commentary from the author on the subject would be cool.



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