One of my New Year’s resolutions this year is to read more books that are considered to be classics. I decided to kick off this resolution by reading Lois Lowry’s The Giver, a book that is a staple on many young adult reading lists, and that I feel I should have read long ago.
Jonas is an eleven-year-old boy who grew up in the Community, a place where everyone has a role to play and where people thrive on sameness. Jonas anxiously awaits the Ceremony of Twelves, where he and his classmates will receive their assignments for their role in the community and take their first steps into adulthood. But Jonas isn’t assigned–he is selected, selected for a very prestigious and rare role, known as the Receiver. As the Receiver, Jonas works with the Giver to receive memories of things and feelings from “back and back and back” and Jonas begins to wonder whether the Community’s commitment to efficiency and sameness is wrong, or possibly even sinister.
The Giver is a story that celebrates difference by imagining a world in which everyone is the same. Even if the story is rather predictable at times, it’s not any less powerful or gripping. This book is a quick read, and I’m very glad I finally picked it up!
Lowry, Lois. The Giver. New York: Random House, 1993.
Image from BN.com.