Wednesday, April 20, 2016

The Giver by Lois Lowry

You would think that since this was like my sixth time reading this book that the ending wouldn't frustrate me so much but it totally does.  I just want to shake Lois Lowry.  I hear that reading the quartet ties up Jonas's story but I'm so distrustful at this point that I refuse.  I refuse!

Honestly, this is a classic for a reason and if you haven't read it already, you should.  It speaks volumes that I have read it six times now.

Jonas lives in a futuristic world where there is nothing unexpected and everything is safe.  In the community, people are assigned their careers, apply for spouses and children, receive their meals from Food Delivery People.  Orders and reminders are broadcast over a speaker.  In the mornings, families share their dreams.  In the evenings, they tell their feelings.  There is no color, no weather, and no emotion.  When somebody commits a serious offense against the rules, they are "released."  Every home only has three books: a dictionary, a rule book, and a directory.

Jonas is about to turn 12, which every child born in his year does at the same time at a ceremony.  At 12, children are assigned their work and begin to train for their careers.  Jonas is nervous.  There is nothing that he is particularly interested in or good at, though he does well at most things and is open to possibilities.  But when it is his turn to receive his assignment, the Chief Elder passes over him completely.  Jonas's stomach automatically drops.  What did he do wrong?

But Jonas has been chosen.

The most honorable position in all of their community is that of Receiver.  The Receiver holds all of the memories of the imperfect past so that the other members of the community don't have to.  The Receiver has wisdom from the memories and is sometimes asked to give an opinion on a change in the rules based on this wisdom.  When Jonas begins to receive the memories, he begins to question the world around him and whether it is better than the way the world used to be.  Is it different Elsewhere?  How can he find out? -RYQ

No comments:

Post a Comment