Book: The Giver
Authoress: Lois Lowry
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Condensed: Jonas lives in a time and place where there is no crime, no poverty, no hunger, and no locks. Where pills are used to dispose of pain and/or desire. Life is good until Jonas receives his new government assigned position. As the Receiver of Memories Jonas' eyes are irreversibly opened to all the beautiful things his people have given up.
My take: This story reminds me of the John Lennon song Imagine. It transports you to an idyllic perfect climate controlled land where families share their dreams before breakfast and hardships over dinner. But soon we realize what at the surface appears to be Utopian is actually Dystopian. There is no competition because everyone is the same. There are no mistakes because there are no choices. There are no books because knowledge is power. This is a journey in to the dark side of perfection that forces the readers to examine what are we willing to give up?
Overall I loved this story and intend to recommend it strongly to every reader I know.
Kiddie-o-meter: All the issues in this book are handled gently and tactfully and I can confidently recommend this book to tweens or teens. There are only two moments parents of tweens should be aware of.
- Jonas receives the memory of war and a young boy dying.
- Jonas has his first arousing dream about a girl in his class.
But again the writer covers both of these instances with such class and finesse that even young tweens can comfortably handle this one.
Adult-o-meter: While the writing style is directly geared to young adults I can optimistically assure you that most adults will relish in the hidden cautions of this tale.
Worth-a-read?: Yes. Buy it, read it, and share it with your tweens and teens.
Share worthy: "Our people made that choice, the choice to go to Sameness. Before my time, before the previous time, back and back and back. We relinquished color when we relinquished sunshine and did away with difference. We gained control of many things. But we had to let go of others."
Red light caution: While the resolution is not sad it is not by any means happy either. Read it for a thought provoking light read and do not expect a storybook ending.
My rating: 5 stars
- My husband needs to read this one.
- What did you think of the end? How did you interpret the final moments of this book?