July Book Review: The Giver

Under the Oaks: The Giver July Book ReivewHave you been looking for a short beach read? I would then recommend to you The Giver by Lois Lowry. This week I listened to the audio version of this young-adult novel, written in 1993. It was a quick listen, so I assume a short read. I would like to note to anyone that may also listen to the audio copy: please do not be weirded out by the bizarre interludes of music, it’s still a good story!

The Giver is about a utopian society that has based its livelihood on the idea of “sameness”. No one has emotional feelings, everyone sees in black and white, decisions are made for them, no one has an individual birthday, and everyone has their job decided for them during their 12th year in the month of December. The main character’s decided job is the job as a “receiver” which is the most respected job within the community. There is only one receiver and their job is to hold all the memories, of all time, within their mind. The old man who gives the memories is “the giver” and he relays all the memories to the receiver by holding his hands to the receiver’s back. He shares both happy and painful memories.

As Jonas begins to receive all the memories he can suddenly see in color, and feel genuine emotions like pain, sadness, joy. The problem is that Jonas is the only one and keeping all those memories to yourself can make for a lonely life. Suddenly life with his family and young friends is different. Then, when Jonas learns the truth behind being “released” things take a drastic change as he comes up with a plan to derail this idea of “sameness” for the better. Note: Being released is when the elderly get too old, or for babies that aren’t perfect, or for those that break the rules too many times. I’m sure you can make a good guess as to what being “released” means.

In mid-August The Giver will be released in theaters (trailer below). After watching the trailer it is not precisely what I’d pictured in my mind, but I am still interested in seeing the movie. I think the movie also looks much more action packed, where the book was fairly steady until about the last quarter where things really start to pick up.

**Note: You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Despite the creepy image above this book was so good!

Do you think there would be any benefits to a life of “sameness”? xoxo ‘n lols, crystal

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