The novel Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro is considered a science fiction novel that tells the story of life in and out of Hailsham boarding school. The story is about human clones whose sole reason to live is to donate their organs to humans who contract incurable diseases like cancer. Throughout the story, it is evident that the lives of the clones, more especially the three main characters Kathy, Tommy and Ruth are not fully aware of their roles in life. At some point in their lives, Kathy ends p as a carer, Tommy as a donor and so is Ruth. But the novel ends on a sad note, Tommy and Ruth reach their ‘completion’ and Kathy is yet to reach hers (Ishiguro298).
The end of the novel brings forth thwarted aspirations and wishes of both Tommy and Kathy. These two clones want to find a temporary escape from their lives through the love and affection that they feel for one another. This is the main reason as to why they visited Madame, so as to seek her approval for their love and be exempted from the live that had already been spelt out for them as clones. This does not happen and they never live to see themselves get out of their doomed life, at least for Tommy who reaches ‘completion’ and Kathy who loses her love in death.
The novel paints’ clones’ lives as hapless. They are not in control of their lives and humans dictate what is to happen to them. Tommy and Kathy are proof to this fact because in an effort to escape from the fate that has befallen them, they are not excused and therefore have to face their fate regardless of their wish to change it. Tommy has got therefore to go on with his donation and Kathy to continue with her work of being a carer until her time comes for her to donate.
The story and especially the end of it is a mystery that is not resolved by the characters involved. They succumb to their fate and are not too willing to work hard and reverse what is to befall them, donation and finally dying. Both of them have resigned to their fate and are just too willing to go on and die as if death is something that does not scare them. It is surprising at how the author ends the novel, because it ends with deaths of not only Hailsham, but the clones and that of the teachers for instance Miss Lucy who does not die a natural death but her death comes in the form of a dismissal from Hailsham.
The book depicts the clones to resemble normal human beings in all aspects safe for the fact that they are clones. But one thing that baffles me is the fact that they are not rebelling against the fate imposed on them. Secondly, even after mingling with real humans, they don’t seem to change their perceptions about their fate. I would have wished that after seeing how normal humans live and behave, they would have changed their perceptions and even tried to resist but on the contrary, they just stay put. The book therefore ends without really bringing forth alternatives to the untimely ‘completion’ of the clones. It is clear that they wish they could never have ‘completed’ this way but there are no alternatives offered, something that Ishiguro may be faulted with.
Ishiguro, Kazuo. Never Let Me Go. London: Faber & Faber. 2009