Friday, September 27, 2013

The Giver by Lois Lowry

Jonas' 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.

 The biggest part of the book is about establishing the society Jonas lives in. There are an incredible amount of rules and people even get punnished for simple things like leaving their homes at night or using an incorrect word. The idea of so little freedom sounds very oppresive, but Lowry does an incredible job of making the society actually sound like a nice place to live. The people seem pleasant and everything seems neatly organized. I loved reading about the society and finding out how it worked. The first half of the book or so, it seems like everything about Jonas' life is good, but later that changes. From the very beginning it is clear what kind of society it is, but somehow I too, like the adults in the book, ignored that fact.

The pace of the book is great and slowly the tension is rising, but the ending seems a bit rushed. The Giver has found a solution to the problem that no one experiences true feelings but it doesn't receive a very extensive explanation. The ending of the book was also very open and personally I found that a bit dissatisfying. Those were the only shortcomings I could find. I found it a very entertaining book with a lot of beautiful descriptions of things that Jonas experiences through memories.

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