23 September 2013
The Giver, the 1994 Newbery Medal winner, has become one of the most influential novels of our time. The haunting story centers on twelve-year-old Jonas, who lives in a seemingly ideal, if colorless, world of conformity and contentment. Not until he is given his life Assignment as the Receiver of Memory does he begin to understand the dark, complex secrets behind his fragile community. Lois Lowry has written three companion novels to The Giver, including Gathering Blue, Messenger, and Son.
Now, I am 99.99% certain that I read The Giver in the nineties. I would have been in ninth/tenth grade when it came out and although that's a bit older than the intended audience, I remembered so much about the book I'm sure I read it.
I chose this to read during my "real-live human reading banned books" stint in the booth at the Coralville Public Library. I had intended to read Shel Silverstein's A Light in the Attic because I thought we'd be reading aloud but since we were reading to ourselves (shame) I switched to The Giver.
Such a beautifully written, heart-wrenching book. I think it's a bit underserved by being labelled a "children's" book because all adults should read it. Amazing commentary on conformity, oppression, and euthanasia. I'll definitely have to go on and read the other three books - I bought them all because of the gorgeous cover designs!