Evan Leach's Reviews > The Remains of the Day

The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Feb 22, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: 6-star-books, nyt-best-of-the-year, booker-nominees, booker-winners, literary-fiction, 1980-1989, english-literature, historical-fiction, novels
Read in December, 2011

Wow. I stumbled upon this book almost by accident, having heard good things about Ishiguro but coming in unfamiliar with his work. Now I’m going to have to go and read through his back catalog. This was an extraordinary book. The story is told from the perspective of Stevens, a butler in an English manor. Most of the book takes place in the years before World War II, and both the butler profession & the rigid class system that supports it are on the decline.

Another reviewer (Siria) noted how extraordinary the first person narration is in this book, and I completely agree. It’s not just that the author creates a unique & authentic voice for the main character (which he does); Ishiguro takes full advantage of the first person format in other ways. Stevens is an unreliable narrator, and much of the book’s power comes from what remains unsaid. It’s a very subtle story, devastatingly so at times. This really is as good as first person narration gets.

I could sit here and gush about this book for hours. The characters are well drawn and true to life. The story’s structure is well conceived and works brilliantly in my opinion. The writing is top-notch. 6 stars. Not to be missed.

Winner: Man Booker Prize (1989)
Selection: New York Times Best Books of 1989
7 likes · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read The Remains of the Day.
Sign In »

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Scott (new)

Scott Hey I have a question. Is this book explicit? Moreover, does it have sexually explicit scenes? Thanks!

Evan Leach Scott wrote: "Hey I have a question. Is this book explicit? Moreover, does it have sexually explicit scenes? Thanks!"

Scott, this is not an explicit book. There are no sexually explicit or violent scenes, and I don't remember any extensive swearing (certainly nothing extreme). It should be appropriate for all readers.

back to top