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“The Giver” young adult science fiction

January 16, 2015

“The Giver” by Lois Lowry is a book I really enjoyed reading.

“It is set in a society which is at first presented as a utopian society but gradually appears more and more dystopian. The novel follows a boy named Jonas through the twelfth and thirteenth years of his life. The society has eliminated pain and strife by converting to “Sameness,” a plan that has also eradicated emotional depth from their lives. Jonas is selected to inherit the position of Receiver of Memory, the person who stores all the past memories of the time before Sameness, in case they are ever needed to aid in decisions that others lack the experience to make. Jonas learns the truth about his dystopian society and struggles with its weight”. (excerpt from Wikipedia description)

I liked the way the reader’s understanding of the setting and society is slowly built over time and there is an interesting concept of “Sameness” where everything in this specific community is over controlled, indifferent and black and white. Even the smallest details of the society was described so I had a good understanding of this “perfect” community.

It’s hard to imagine a society functioning without emotions, choices and colour but this one seems to. The reason I chose this book was because it was the book a movie of the same name and I am really keen to see the movie and how the concept and details of the community are depicted on-screen. This book really made me realise how many things we take for granted everyday. The only negative thing I have to say is I felt the ending was pretty anticlimactic and inconclusive but there maybe a sequel so I will have to read that, if there is.

– review by Jason Benbow
“The Giver” film is now available from Tararua District Library. Members can rent it for $3.50/week and reserve it for an additional $1 fee.


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