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The Ask and the Answer (Chaos Walking) Paperback – 7 Sep 2009


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Product details

  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Walker (7 Sept. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1406322474
  • ISBN-13: 978-1406322477
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 3.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (136 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 125,707 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Patrick Ness is the author of the Chaos Walking Trilogy - The Knife of Never Letting Go, The Ask and the Answer, and Monsters of Men - for which he has won numerous awards, including the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize, the BookTrust Teenage Prize and the Costa Children's Book Award. He has also been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal. He lives in London.

Product Description

Review

"* "Ness is a young writer of exciting quality and unpredictability." The Times" --The Times --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Ness is a young writer of exciting quality and unpredictability." (The Times) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Mr. James Charles on 11 Jun. 2009
Format: Hardcover
The second in this trilogy, Chaos Walking, continues the adventures of Todd, but this isn't only a young persons book by any means. With its dark and unsettling storyline, its all-too-real human conflicts and (we hope) resolutions, The Ask and the Answer certainly asks difficult questions about authority, complaisance and consequences of actions. Sometimes our own answers are not what we would like to think they would be. Set in a bleak, violent and all too plausible future, it doesn't leave the reader with much hope, but certainly with an anxiety to read the third and final part as soon as possible.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By debbie8355 TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 8 May 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was one sequel I just had to read after the outstanding 'Knife of Never Letting Go' and it didn't disappoint in any way. It's a fabulous book.
This story is all about Todd and Viola who find themselves on opposing sides of a power struggle between the new mayor, now self proclaimed president and head of the 'Ask', in what was the town of Haven and the 'Answer' a group of female healers and freedom fighters. Todd finds himself part of the 'Ask' alongside his former enemy Davy and Viola is part of the 'Answer'.
This is a superbly atmospheric book which centres on the town of Haven which is now chillingly renamed New Prentisstown after the new mayor siezes power.
This book delves into topics of ethnic cleansing, female emancipation, torture and terrorism in an enthralling alien world where the 'noise' of animal and male thought can be heard which creates compelling situations and storylines. It is a brilliantly written, intelligent, gripping page turner. The new president is a truly terrifying, manipulative villian.
The alien native Spackle are central to this story and lead to an amazing cliff hanger. Very highly recommended and I will be definitely reading the third in the series...

UPDATE

There is now a short prequel story about Viola, by Patrick Ness, available to read online. Please see the comments section of this review for the link (the Amazon filters aren't allowing the link to be posted in the main body of my review).
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By QuillofArkham1 on 29 Jun. 2009
Format: Hardcover
This second book in the Chaos Trilogy and it continues where the Knife of Never Letting Go ended.

The story is now basically split between to the two main characters of the first book and you follow Todd and Viola as they find themselves on opposite sides. Todd falls ever deeper under the influence of Mayor Prentiss and his new world order now calling themselves the (ASK). Viola sides with the women healers fronted by Mistress Coyle calling themselves (Answer).

This book is wonderfully written and contains all the elements of the first book, the story switches at each chapter between Todd and Viola and this enhances the story, you get to see both characters points of view.

The book does have a very dark side especially when it covers such subjects such as ethnic cleansing, and torture, so its not a happy book, but it does make you think.

The plot is driven by characters and situations and when characters are manipulated before your eyes and they can't see it, but you can, it just creates more tension.

The plot-lines do converge and you get some answers and revelations, but you also get a whole host of other questions that need answering, and some very, very teasing new opening plot - lines for the third book.

In my opinion, this is by far the best series I have read in the last ten years and I for one can't wait for the next book. For fan's check out Patrick Ness's website, for a short story that explains how Viola crashed on the planet- it's not to be missed.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Quicksilver TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback
'The Ask and the Answer' is the second book of the 'Chaos Walking' Trilogy, following on from the excellent The Knife of Never Letting Go, a book which rightly won awards and plaudits across the board. If anything Part 2 is even better.

'TAATA' picks up the story, from where the first book finishes, and the reader is immediately plunged into a murky world of ambiguous morals, as Viola and Todd are forced to face the deliciously evil Mayor Prentiss.

I think it's hard to overstate just how good this novel is. Once again, using sparse readable prose, Patrick Ness strips bare the human psyche. He blurs the lines between Good and Evil further than in part 1, creating a simplified but dreadfully realistic micro-society. Here the reader is asked to analyse the difference between a terrorist and a freedom fighter, and question where the line lies between the two. Ness uses the plight of his characters to question at what point appeasement becomes abetting, and skilfully highlights how, with little motivation, good people can find themselves doing terrible things.

In the manipulative Mayor Prentiss, the man who would be President, Ness has created one of literature's more charismatic villains; you can't help but believe some of what he says. The book would be considerably less without him. If that wasn't enough, Ness has woven in threads of treachery, compassion and redemption, to create a rich and powerful novel. Though nominally a children's book, 'TAATA' is a mature read, in which readers have to question their assumptions about the nature of power, and the reasons why men go to war.
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