WOW. That’s all that needs to be said about this book. Actually…no this book is so good that a lot needs to be said about it. This is probably my favorite book that I have ever read. (I’m still in the beginning stages of my reading hobby).
This is going to be a spoiler free review because everyone should go into this book blind.
Klara and the Sun is about an AF, or artificial friend, named Klara and her journey from the store to her owners home. But it is about so much more than that. The way Ishiguro puts the reader into Klara’s mind and explains how she thinks was done perfectly IMO. Everything from the way she uses character names to her innocence and how that shapes her view of the sun’s affect on humans.
The book is a slow burn, but I think that helps you get to know the characters and get to know Klara. Throughout the book there are times when little things happen and you go “something isn’t right here”, but then for several chapters after that everything seems fine and, at least for me, you think “well, maybe nothing weird is going on after all.”
I think that is part of the genius of this book because even if there is something weird going on the reader doesn’t notice it outright because Klara doesn’t know what the hell is going on either. Her innocence puts a kind of rosy shade over the readers eyes that makes you think everything is ok, until something obviously isn’t ok.
I was sitting at around a 9/10 about 3/4 of the way through the book and knew that the ending would decide my final score. I kept wondering how it would end and worried that the ending would just be some sub-par, run-of-the-mill ending, but I am so glad I was wrong.
Score: 10/10 Amazing
Plot: The plot is a slow burn, but I never got bored with the story because Klara is always so enamored with the world and taking in her surroundings. There is also little sprinkles of “something is fucked up” ever so gently placed throughout the story that I couldn’t tell if I just wanted there to be something fucked up going on or if there actually was something fucked up going on.
Characters: The story is told through the eyes of Klara, an artificial friend, who is purchased by a mother and her daughter named Josie. Klara’s outlook on the world is so special and done so well. Sometimes stories with robots can go over the top, but here it is done so subtly that there are only certain little things in the way that Klara thinks or talks that gives her away as a robot. Instead of her saying “How are you doing today, Josie?” Klara instead says something like “How is Josie doing today?”. I just think something as small as that makes so much difference when dealing with how a robot might think in real life.
This is the first book I’ve read from Ishiguro and definitely want to check out more. Which ones should I pick up?
Thanks for reading!