Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry

Welcome to the Community in the Future

When This Book Takes Place

In Gathering Blue Kira becomes the Threader and she works to fix the designs and colors on the Singer's Robe. The robe tells the stories of the community's past. One of the scenes is The Ruin. It shows buildings collapsing and making a large mess. This tells that all of the buildings were in the past. It means that the present in real life is the past in the book so the book must take place in the future. In the book nobody speaks with correct grammar. I think that when The Ruin was over the whole world started over again. Nothing they do is very complicated and I think they will have to learn how to do many things that people had already learned how to do in the past. The color blue is very hard to dye in this book. In fact, it is the only color that Kira cannot make. That surprises me because I think that they should be able to make all colors because I am not used to people being limited to colors.

Key Places

This book takes place in a community somewhere in the world. The main character, Kira, lives in a little house for a few days after her mom dies (her mom dies on the first page of the book). When the house is burned because it might have disease she moves to the Council Edifice. It is the biggest building in the middle of the community. She moves into one of the many empty rooms. There is one other person who lives close to her, Thomas the Carver. She receives the job to repair the Singer's robe and the first thing she has to do is learn how to dye all of the colors. For the days until the Dyer dies, Kira goes to *Annabella's house to learn how to make different colors. To reach her home she had to go on a path that stretched deep into the woods, which is the farthest Kira goes away from the center of the community.

*Annabella is the Dyer

Mood and Atmosphere

Most of this book is somber. Kira's leg is messed up and she has a hard time doing many activities. She is put on trial, accused by Vandara, to die. She barely keeps her life and she has to live in the near empty Council Edifice (large main building). She has to start all over again with her life. The three ¨artists¨ in the community (the Carver, the Threader, the Singer) are all orphans. The Council of Guardians kills their parents so that the community can keep their talents hostage; moreover, Kira has very bad luck. But some of this book is happy. Kira is faced with many obstacles but she has the strength to overcome them. She does everything right so that people will respect her.

How Setting Affects the Characters

If the setting was different Kira would not have to struggle to keep her life at the beginning of the book. In this community they do not like it when people are "broken"; therefore, since Kira has a twisted leg she must fight to remain in the community. If it took place in a different time Kira would not be the Threader. If they had the technology like today threaders are not needed because we have many machines and efficient ways to make clothes and special robes. If Kira lived in some other community her parents might still be alive and living with her. The leaders of other communities might not want or need the talents she possesses so it would be fine for her to live with her parents and use her talent for her own wants or needs.

How Setting Affects the Plot

If this book took place in the 21st century then the community would have plenty of food and shelter. If they had those resources Kira would be able to stay in a house and would not have to fight to stay alive. With proper aid Kira's leg would be able to be fixed so that she could walk easier. There would be one less conflict in the book because Kira would have everything she needs to live a healthy life.