Sarah's Reviews > Son

Son by Lois Lowry
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Oct 08, 12

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Read in October, 2012

** spoiler alert ** I have to think of this book as three separate ones to give it even 3 stars...the first section "Before" takes place in the same community at the same time as The Giver. This made me incredibly excited, because I have taught The Giver to my 8th grade students for the past 4 years, and will again this year. By now, I think I am somewhat of an expert regarding this book and could not wait to see what Lois Lowry did with the conclusion. I have also read Gathering Blue and Messenger and will admit to being slightly obsessed with the fate of Jonas and Gabriel.

That being said, I was extremely disappointed with the first section of this novel. Though it takes place in the same community, it seemed to me that Lowry forgot what type of community she had created! The presence of words such as "drowning," "die," "love" and Jonas' father's reaction to learning that Gabriel was going to be released are in complete contradiction to the community Jonas lived in! Claire, the main character from Son, would have no concept of these words, and threfore would not have even had the capability to think them, and Jonas' father would NEVER had argued to save Gabriel - it just wasn't done. Ever. Had the entire book continued this way, I would have had to stop reading.

But, it didn't. It continued on to "Between"...which was completely boring until Claire begins training to leave. The characters in this Elsewhere were somewhat interesting, but I was already disenchanted by the first section of the novel and found it hard to emotionally invest in characters I knew were fleeting.

After Claire gets out, the third portion of the novel goes to "Beyond" - the community from Messenger where Jonas and Gabriel now live. This section of the book was more satisfying; set almost 10 years after Messenger, Lowry did a nice job of growing Gabriel into a "typical" teenager, and creating a loving family for Jonas. However, I felt that the ultimate conclusion of the book was rushed. Gabriel has to use his newly-found "power" to vanquish his mortal enemy....and that takes about 6 paragraphs. And then the book is over. The last two lines left me with a tear in my eye, but I think that's because Jonas and Gabriel deserved more, or to have been left alone.

Lois Lowry may have served her readers best to let us keep wondering...
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message 1: by Ronni (new) - added it

Ronni I think those words start to come back to Claire because that's when Jonas has left. All the memories start to flood back to the community, so I can see why those would start to come back. I was hoping to see more of that aftermath to be honest.


Sarah Ronni,

Yes, you are correct - Jonas did release his memories back to the community. However, he and Claire left on the same day, so she still would not have known those words. So sad...


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