Transparent Men and Inscrutable Women: Gender Essentialism in The Knife of Never Letting Go

When I first read the book about four years ago, I was absolutely enchanted by its originality and style. It’s so different from anything else I’ve ever read, rooted deeply in the voice of its main character, Todd. The novel has depth and heart, two qualities that aren’t as common in any genre as I would like them to be. But at the same time, something about it made me uncomfortable, and it’s taken me a while to sort out what it was that made the book feel so problematic.

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