Chad Warner's Reviews > The Giver

The Giver by Lois Lowry
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's review
Nov 03, 2009

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bookshelves: fiction, science-fiction
Read in October, 2009 , read count: 1

I started reading this book in 10th grade, when we had an open reading day. I got through the first few chapters, but had to return the book at the end of the class. I was just getting into the story, so I intended to pick it back up later, but never got around to it until now, 7 years later!

I'm glad I completed the book this time. Although it's a children's book, it's worth reading for adults. The book tells the story of Jonas, a 12 year old boy who lives in a highly regulated utopia in the future. In this future, humans have determined that risk and pain should be removed from life. They accomplished their goal, but also removed colors, music, happiness, and love. Although the elders of Jonas' village prefer it that way, he doesn't, and sets out to change it. This excerpt serves as a good summary of the setting:
"The community where his entire life had been lived lay behind him now, sleeping. At dawn, the orderly, disciplined life he had always known would continue again, without him. The life where nothing was ever unexpected. Or inconvenient. Or unusual. The life without color, pain, or past."
I'm not sure how the ending could have been improved, but it seemed lacking. The story contains morals about the value of life, memories, friendships, and love. The main lesson is that to fully enjoy life and all the good in it, we must be willing to accept the painful parts of life as well.
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