Klara and the Sun
This is my first time reading a book by Kazuo Ishiguro, and although this one left me unmoved I know I will read more of his works. This follows Klara, an Artificial Friend robot, or AF, as she keeps her friend Josie company as she grows into young adulthood. Klara’s musings on loneliness were interesting, but overall this was just an okay read for me.
I was more fascinated by the background of this world than I was in Josie and company. I also loved the beginning when Klara was at the front of the store taking in the Sun, observing the world around her with her robot friend, Rose. It started off really strong, before Josie’s story began to unravel. The things that took place after Klara was adopted as Josie’s AF were interesting, but I didn’t really get attached to any of the characters beyond Klara so I just couldn’t get invested. I understand that that wasn’t the point, but it was all very confusing. I really love sci-fi and reading books with AI characters. It brings up great questions about what makes us human, but this one missed the mark for me. I was probably expecting something more sci-fi but this definitely falls more into the literary fiction category. I probably came into this with my own expectations, and in the end I was left feeling what the heck did I just read and not in the good way. After talking to a friend that has read his other works, it seems this is one I probably shouldn’t have started with. I still appreciate this novel and its genre bending feel, and maybe I will come back to it when I have a greater understanding of Kazuo Ishiguro, but also maybe not.
[ID: Viv holding the book KLARA AND THE SUN by Kazuo Ishiguro up in the air over a dirt path lined with big trees in the background. It is sunset so the sun is glowing softly over the book]