The Giver

By Lois Lowry Flyer Created by Daniel Calderon

Book Summary

"It wasn't a practical thing, so it became obsolete when we went to Sameness." In a society where everyone lives under Sameness, get their jobs assigned, and don't lie, Jonas a young boy is chosen as their Receiver of Memories. As the Receiver, his job is to endure and experience old memories of humanity to draw wisdom. Through these memories he learns about colors, experiences loneliness, but most importantly he learns about love, all of which are notably absent from Jonas's world. This completely changes the way Jonas looks at his world. He realizes that no one in his community has ever felt any real emotions at all. But when Jonas discovers that the process of "release," which is performed on people who break the rules, babies who are sick, and people who are very old, is really just a lethal injection, he reaches his breaking point. The Giver and Jonas created a plan; Jonas will fake his own death and run away to Elsewhere, the memories which The Giver has passed to him will be released to the community, at which point they'll all just have to deal with the pain. Just like how they did with Rosemary, the past failed Receiver, ten years ago. But things go wrong, when Jonas discovers that Gabriel, a baby given to his family temporarily until he is ready for the ceremony of the newborns, was going to be "released" he makes a quick escape with Gabriel. The last scene is Gabriel and Jonas riding a sled down a hill after days of starving and transmitting faint memories.

Characters

Jonas (Main Character)

Jonas growing up never knew what he was going to be assigned, he knew he was different but he didn't know why. When he became the Receiver, the pieces started coming together, slowly. The main challenge Jonas had to face was understanding that the people in his community didn't understand what he was experiencing, they don't know what is right from what is wrong, they don't know love, and cannot experience happiness. For example; through the process of "release", the people performing these task don't know what they are doing is morally wrong. The way he solved this problem showed his selflessness, letting people acquire the memories so they can experience life at the fullest, but at the cost where he has to leave the community and never return.
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“The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It's the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared.”

Questions?

Why did Jonas’s society decide that it was necessary to have Receiver of Memories?
What is Sameness, and why do you think the people of Jonas’s society chose to institute it?
What were the consequences of Sameness?
What are the major themes of this novels?
Do you believe that Jonas plan was a good idea, or a bad idea? Why?

Overall Rating

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. This is because the ending of the book, the cliff hanger wasn't thrilling enough or captivating enough. The community had some flaws that it made it uneasy to read, and it was difficult to connect with the characters because of the lack of vulnerability.

Book to Movie Adaptation Trailer

The Giver TRAILER 2 (2014) - Brenton Thwaites, Katie Holmes Movie HD