Never Let Me Go Literary Analysis

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Throughout the novel of Never Let Me Go, Kathy constantly reflects on her memories. The whole entire novel is a flashback to her time at Hailsham where she met her two close friends Ruth and Tommy. She recalls their relationships since they were kids, and holds these memories close to her. She never wants to let them go and will always try and keep her life in her head. Through the theme of memories and the past, readers can analyze that Never Let Me Go is about holding on. From the start of the book, Kathy is reminiscing on her past days at Hailsham. She remembers all the important events in her life from the time she was a child to the time she started donating. As she describes “There have been times over the years when I’ve tried…show more content…
Although Ruth tends to let go, both Tommy and Kathy hold on. When Ishiguro communicates “I still had most of my old Hailsham collection box safely stowed inside my pine chest in my bedsit…’You never had a collection box after Hailsham, did you?’... I was really upset about Ruth’s remark at the time” (Ishiguro 130-131), he shows how Ruth and Kathy’s development reflects the theme. Once arriving at the cottages, Ruth did everything in her power to forget about Hailsham, to shed the past and become someone knew. Kathy on the other hand, still held on to her childhood, as represented by the “collection box.” Ruth states “You kept it. I wish now I’d done that too,” (Ishiguro 131). Later in life, Ruth undergoes guilt on ridding herself of Hailsham and wishes that she kept her collection instead of throwing it away. Ruth let go of everything but by the end she wanted to hold on, reflecting on the theme of memories and the past and holding on. Whereas with Tommy, he is seen to remember everything that happened just like Kathy. When Tommy says “But we might as well look now we’re here. I mean, you’d like to find it again, wouldn’t you? What have we got to lose?” (Ishiguro 170), he reveals how he thinks about the past and holds on as much as Kathy. Earlier in Norfolk, Kathy was thinking about the old rumor that everything lost gets found and in this passage, Tommy is shown…show more content…
Even on the last page of the book Kathy is thinking about Hailsham and all her lost memories (Ishiguro 288). Kathy as a character holds on to things and was never shown to let go. She still remembers minute details from her past and kept her collection box of memories a long time after departing from Hailsham. This book was a reflection on her life so she never forgets. She wants to keep all of her memories until the day she dies so she can leave this world knowing who she is and where she came from. Kathy will only live for a short time period so remembering everything that happened in it is very vital to her. She values her memories to a point where it dominates her thoughts. Kathy does not want to forget Hailsham, the guardians, her friends, the cottages, or anything that happened to her throughout her life. She is holding on for dear life and her memories are telling her throughout the book to “Never Let Me

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