Children’s Book Review: The Giver by Lois Lowry

Belonging to the dystopian literature genre published in 1993, ‘The Giver’ is a children’s novel written by Lois Lowry. The main aspect of this novel is sameness and eradication of the concept of unique personal identity. Everything is controlled by elders and people are left with no personal choice. The story revolves around Jonas who is a 12 year old child and the gets the role of the Receiver of Memory in a decision announcement ceremony. The role of Jonas is very interesting in the novel. For example, he is assigned the duty of receiving the memories in which he can ask any question to anyone but cannot discuss the training with anyone. The purpose of the novel is to highlight the importance of human emotions, as well as the need of individual freedom. The theme of the novel includes some key subject areas, which include controlled society, need for freedom of choice, importance of emotions and feelings, relationship between wisdom and memory, and utopia and dystopia.

The book is named as ‘The Giver’ because of the fact that Jonas receives memories from the old receiver known as The Giver. Here, one point to mention is that the old receiver does not just pass fresh memories of Jonas’s society but also the ones from an earlier phase of the society in which there was every type of emotion, color, music, and sex in the world of Jonas. Jonas has to remember all memories of the community ranging from Christmas and birthday parties to sad memories of death, loss, and warfare.
While receiving memories from the old receiver, Jonas learns the process of release in which is applied to the people who do not perform their assigned roles properly. Upon knowing the process, Jonas and The Giver make a plan for the release of Jonas. In the plan, Jonas fakes his death and comes out of society to move to some other place. The intent behind the plan is to make people of the community aware of the importance of choices as Jonas planned to release all memories on the community before leaving.

Jonas takes Gabriel with him and starts biking away from his own society while continuously transmitting memories. He just tries to leave the community to go to a place where he could feel emotions of love, care, and music and where there could be individual freedom for everyone. The communication between the old man and Jonas is there all through the novel as the old man keeps on asking Jonas questions about what he feels about the real world and what he experiences while escaping from the community. Jonas does not feel it easy to run away from the boundaries of an emotionless life as he faces many difficulties during the mission. However, he continues running and sees his father following the rules of the community. In the meantime, everyone in the community finds out that Jonas has left and that The Giver is the only one remaining to help them in crisis. Jonas, on the other hand, keeps on moving up the hill and reaches a point from where he and Gabriel can fly downwards. While flying downwards, he sees colors and lights which make him feel that he has reached the world of color, music, and emotions.
My opinion of the book is very positive. I would say that the book is well written and the author has used easy words to make the story clear for the readers. The book is not only interesting and instructive. The main strengths of the book are the use of easy words and a strong connection between the arguments. Social issues covered in this book are people’s need for freedom and choice. Overall, I have liked this book and recommend this book to every person who likes stories based on fiction and imaginations.

 

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