Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Giver

From Goodreads: In the "ideal" world into which Jonas was born, everybody has sensibly agreed that well-matched married couples will raise exactly two offspring, one boy and one girl. These children's adolescent sexual impulses will be stifled with specially prescribed drugs; at age 12 they will receive an appropriate career assignment, sensibly chosen by the community's Elders.

This is a world in which the old live in group homes and are "released"--to great celebration--at the proper time; the few infants who do not develop according to schedule are also "released," but with no fanfare.

Lowry's development of this civilization is so deft that her readers, like the community's citizens, will be easily seduced by the chimera of this ordered, pain-free society. Until the time that Jonah begins training for his job assignment--the rigorous and prestigious position of Receiver of Memory--he, too, is a complacent model citizen. But as his near-mystical training progresses, and he is weighed down and enriched with society's collective memories of a world as stimulating as it was flawed, Jonas grows increasingly aware of the hypocrisy that rules his world.

With an eerie futuristic setting, Lowry is once again in top form--raising many questions while answering few, and unwinding a tale fit for the most adventurous readers.

We are so sorry for the lack of updates! Beryl and I are in our senior year of high school, and we didn’t think it was so much work! We’re both overachievers, so we hardly have any time for books and this site. Please stay with us, though! We’ll try to read enough to provide you a few reviews every month.

The Giver is a book the juniors read every year at our school, and they kind of hate it. All of them hate it, really, without exception. I don’t see why, though. I absolutely loved this book, even though it was rather plot-less. It was a book of feelings, and the author has the amazing ability to transmit her emotions through her words.

Jonas, our protagonist, is brave and intelligent, even in his young age. He has started to see things others don’t see, and has been chosen to be the next Receiver of memories of his community. The Receiver knows everything. He is taught everything of a world before Sameness, of the world we live in.

The world built is perfect, supposedly. But to me, it is simply eerie. A guy with whom I was talking claimed it was a magnificent utopia; I call it a disturbing dystopia. I guess it’s just how you look at it, really. Nonetheless, it was a fascinating world I would gladly read more about. I would hate to live in a gray world where everyone is the same. Colors and art are such an important part of my life, I would be unable to live without it, and the way this world works captured me. Who would’ve thought to create a world where people willingly accept never to think, never to choose, don’t ever see color, but also a world with no war, no fear, no hard choices?

The Giver is a book of tenderness, emotion, and feelings. It is amazing. It can make you feel the warmth of Christmas, make you fall in love with colors all over again, show you an orange sunset and give you the calmness that comes with it. But it also can make you disgusted with the world by showing you pain and hunger, though not with as much efficiency as it gives the happier feelings. I highly recommend and praise this book. I didn’t find it had much of a plot, but that might be because I didn’t fully understand the ending I recommend it nonetheless. It is a book you feel in your heart and cherish once you are done.


The Giver by Lois Lowry

Rating: 8/10

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