The Giver Review

Title: The Giver
Author: Lois Lowry
Publisher: Ember
Genre: Dystopian, Science Fiction

Blurb: (from goodreads) Jonas's world is perfect. Everything is under control. There is no war or fear or pain. There are no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the Community. When Jonas turns twelve, he is singled out to receive special training from The Giver. The Giver alone holds the memories of the true pain and pleasure of life. Now, it is time for Jonas to receive the truth. There is no turning back.

Me: I'm astounded at how ahead of her time Lois Lowry is. This book was written 20 years ago, yet it has assets in it that authors today would envy.

The Ups: The Giver is not a bad book. It has a fascinating setting that is very well woven and interpreted, and I can very well imagine the world that Jonas lives in. Lois Lowry did a fantastic job at really creating this world, really making the culture, the horrific normality of the entire thing stand out. I think that it is so interesting because it is written so bluntly that these people do not experience memories, or color, or music, or love. And to think about that is scary and unreal, yet The Giver portrays it in an eerie form of reality.
The Giver was a very interesting character as well, and his quietness even after knowing the truth showed just how impossible the prospect of change looked in this community. 
I was constantly amazed at how modern the book seemed, and how it kind of pioneered a real genre of dystopia.

The Downs: However, I think that this book was nothing special. It didn't cause chilling emotions, or any sympathy and love for Jonas himself. I was not emotionally connected to Jonas, and throughout the story, didn't really feel his confusion and his pain and his wonder. 
It didn't make me think about how our idea of paradise and perfection might be monstrously contorted or anything eye-opening like that. It was just a decent book. 
I especially didn't like the ending. I found myself getting really bored at the ending, and I didn't like how it seemed to abruptly cut off. It wasn't a smooth end to the story.
Maybe if I took the time someday to really analyze it, and to really think about it, and possibly reread it I may find a new connection to the book I didn't before. But this first time through it, I didn't get much out of it.

Overall: Not bad, but not stellar either.

Rating: 3 kisses!


  1. I remember reading, "The Giver" a while ago. I can't remember much about it, and this blog made me want to read it again! I think that the reason that you didn't feel that connected to Jonas was because the book was written in third person.

  2. Nice review Kate! Makes me wanna read it :D