Klara and the Sun

Author(s): Kazuo Ishiguro

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Klara and the Sun is the first novel by Kazuo Ishiguro since he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature 2017.From the bestselling and Booker Prize winning author of Never Let Me Go and The Remains of the Day, a stunning new novel - his first since winning the Nobel Prize in Literature - that asks, what does it mean to love?This is the story of Klara, an Artificial Friend with outstanding observational qualities, who, from her place in the store, watches carefully the behaviour of those who come in to browse, and of those who pass in the street outside. She remains hopeful a customer will soon choose her, but when the possibility emerges that her circumstances may change for ever, Klara is warned not to invest too much in the promises of humans.A thrilling feat of world-building, a novel of exquisite tenderness and impeccable restraint, Klara and the Sun is a magnificent achievement, and an international literary event.

We meet Klara at the store with her best friend Rosa. Soon it will be their turn to be in the window—the sweet spot for attracting attention—and, hopefully, purchased. Manager is very pleased with Klara and, while the week in the window doesn’t yield immediate success, the attention of teenager Josie is garnered. Klara is an AF (artificial friend)—a model with high sensitivity, great observation skills, a talent for mimicry, and superb computational skills. She probably has a perfect EQ score. When Josie and her mother return to the store some weeks later, Klara passes the questions and tests posed by the Mother, and is packed and ready to dispatch to her new home. This is a near-future America where the elites are scaling further ahead with their advantages of education and resources, where children are ‘lifted’—genetically improved—and where company for children can come in the form of an AF. The world is polluted cities, intensive farming, and social anxiety. Josie, like her peers, studies from home with her tutors streamed in (school is too dangerous), has few interactions outside the home (Mother, Melania Houskeeper and Klara are the household)—her childhood friend, Rick (not lifted), and the set social occasions with the other lifted teenagers to help them learn social engagement behaviours are the exceptions. But Josie is often unwell, and it’s Klara’s role to help her through these times—to keep her company and be her friend. Ishiguro’s eighth novel, Klara and the Sun is reminiscent of his wonderful Never Let Me Go (which was a cautionary tale about cloning), and is told solely from Klara’s viewpoint. Klara is highly intelligent, emotionally superior (especially when it comes to empathy), and curious (she questions what she sees and hears—something that may be an unexpected and possibly unwelcome consequence of her model), yet she is fetchingly naive and seemingly without endless knowledge. She’s not hardwired into the internet. She has to piece new experiences together—whether these are physical or emotional—but she can do this extremely well and quickly. We, the readers, may not be as fast as Klara, but we too have to gather the clues and piece together the actions of Josie, her mother, Rick, and the others we meet through Klara’s eyes, to make sense of this future world and the motivations of the players. Not surprisingly, the motivations are familiar—self-improvement and selfishness to retain privilege. As Josie’s illness worsens we discover that the process of 'lifting' can be fatally detrimental. Klara, with her sense of loyalty, love and responsibility, is convinced she can make a difference if she can communicate with the Sun (she is solar-powered), who she believes has special powers—to make a deal that may save Josie’s life. Kazuo Ishiguro will make you love Klara and question the depth of understanding and sensitivity in our humans, despite the real issues of loss and fear that are faced by Josie and her parents. Klara and the Sun is wonderfully narrated, compelling and stimulating. Who has the greater human heart in this tale of loyalty, love, fragility and uncertainty?


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'A masterpiece.' Sunday Times


Kazuo Ishiguro was born in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1954 and moved to Britain at the age of five. His eight previous works of fiction have earned him many honours around the world, including the Nobel Prize in Literature and the Booker Prize. His work has been translated into over fifty languages and The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go, both made into acclaimed films, have sold over a million copies each in Faber editions. He was given a knighthood in 2018 for Services to Literature. He also holds the decorations of Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from France and the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star from Japan.

General Fields

  • : 9780571364886
  • : Faber & Faber, Limited
  • : Faber & Faber, Limited
  • : 0.407
  • : January 2021
  • : ---length:- '23.4'width:- '15.3'units:- Centimeters
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Kazuo Ishiguro
  • : Paperback
  • : English
  • : 823.92
  • : 320