Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Book Review: "The Giver" by Lois Lowry

From the back cover:
"Jonas's world is perfect. Everything is under control. There is no war or fear or pain. There are no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the Community.
  When Jonas turns twelve, he is singled out to receive special training from The Giver. The Giver alone holds the memories of the true pain and pleasure of life. Now it is time for Jonas to receive the truth. There is no turning back."

I am ashamed to say that The Giver has been on my TBR pile for over a year, being constantly passed over for other books. (I am also ashamed to say that I have never read any of Lois Lowry's books before.) I am heartily sorry I waited so long to read it, because this story Blew. Me. Away! This is a story that grabs you at your emotional center and shakes you to the core. It will scare you, humble you, make your mind reel. This is a book that will stay with you long after you have put it down. It was the 1994 winner of the John Newbery Medal and it is very well deserved. Read it with your kids (or your spouse) and have some great discussions. (See below for some discussion questions I thought of as I read.)
  I will now go back and read all the books she has ever written. (Thus growing my TBR pile by leaps and bounds!) I'll start with the two companion books to The Giver: Gathering Blue and Messenger.

 Some Discussion Questions (for AFTER you read the book): What does it mean to be a part of society? What do people give up to be a part of a society? What do they gain? How does Jonas cope with the knowledge he gains: about society in general and his family in particular? How does training Jonas change The Giver? What would you do if you were the Receiver of Memories? Why do you think The Giver was in pain? How do you think the Society coped after Jonas left?


  1. One of my all time favorites! I'm glad you finally got to it. You do know there are 2 companion books, right? Gathering Blue and The Messenger. Both good too, but The Giver still wins.

  2. Those are next on my list (well, as soon as possible, anyway!)

  3. I also LOVED this book! I also read Number the Stars and love that one too! Wish I had more time to discuss right now... The good thing about my mother-in-law is all the handed down books, or books she buys and sends my way because they were just.that.good. ;o)

  4. There's nothing better than great FREE books!