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The Giver by Lois Lowry

The Giver (original 1993; edition 2002)

by Lois Lowry

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23,912115845 (4.19)564
"The Giver" takes place sometime in the future and about a young boy's life in his "community." Jonas, the young boy, after receiving his assignment, began to rebel against his community's lifestyle and was forced to make a choice of no return. This is an awesome book! ( )
  JTNguyen | Apr 25, 2012 |
English (1,143)  Italian (3)  German (2)  Portuguese (1)  French (1)  English (Middle) (1)  All languages (1,151)
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Интересное чтиво. Но детям бы не давал его читать ​без должных комментариев. Обычная история эгоизма ​и тщеславия, побудившего человека решать самому за​ все общество. По сути жили они весьма хорошо и сч​астливо. И только этим двум глупцам было тяжело и ​одиноко. Если глубже копнуть, то встаёт философски​й вопрос что есть жизнь, для чего мы живём, можно ​ли пожертвовать одним ради многих, что есть выбор?​ Книжечку рекомендую к прочтению. Неспешному, вдум​чивому, с последующей рефлексией по горячим следам​ ( )
  Billy.Jhon | Apr 25, 2016 |
I liked this book for several reasons. The main message was to give the readers a look into a dystopian society. The first think I liked about the story was that the characters were well developed. Jonas is the only "normal" character in the book from the reader's perspective, but from the society's point of view he is the one who is the outsider. Jonas is a well developed character who expresses his thoughts and feelings. For example, his developing anger towards the authority in his society are typical of adolescents. This also makes him a believable character, even though the setting of the book is unrealistic. The book follows Jonas' journey and his interactions with his peers and the rest of society. Through these interactions, the reader is able to picture just how unusual Jonas' society really is. I also enjoyed the element of fantasy in the story. The fact that Jonas is the only one who can hold all of the memories of the entire society / village is unrealistic, but also gives the book a powerful message. It is through this power that Jonas is able to see the true pain and suffering people had to endure before they reached this level of sameness. This also helps show the reader the importance of individuality as well as self-will - Jonas' escape from the town was a way of liberating himself as well as opening the rest of his society up to the true ups and downs of life. ( )
  ygurova | Apr 22, 2016 |
I liked this book for many reasons. The first reason was that the characters were somewhat believable. Jonas is growing up and he is starting to question the authority that he lives in with his utopia. So many kids growing up end up questioning authority and end up sometimes rebelling. Another reason is the writing is very much engaged. The author is able to help the reader understand how every character feels. The only thing I did not like about the book is the plot with the ending. I am someone who likes to know how exactly the book ends and not be left with a cliffhanger. The big idea of the story is about breaking from the rules and exploring who you want to be. ( )
  wclayw1 | Apr 18, 2016 |
I had read this book over a decade ago and remembered it being a very good read. I only read it a second time after finally watching the film. I found so much to ponder in each format that I could probably do a few more cycles of both. I think there are so many discussion points that could be incorporated into using with students that I am sure I will try to use it even if it isn't required reading wherever I may work as a librarian. ( )
  ScottPrinzing | Apr 16, 2016 |
This is a science fiction novel. This book follows the life of a yound boy, Jonas, and the utopian world that he lives in. Each new year, there is a ceremony to celebrate the aging of the kids 1-12 years of age. You are a 1 if you were born at any time in the previous year. Jonas is becoming a 12 at the next upcoming ceremony, and all of the 12s are assigned their new jobs, marking the end of their childhood. Jonas is apprehensive about this ceremony, because he has no idea what job he will be assigned - he doesn't have any obvious and concrete interests like some of the other kids in his group. At the ceremony, he gets chosen as the new Receiver of Memory, which is the most honorable job in the whole community - there is only one Receiver of Memory. In this job, the old Receiver (Jonas calls him The Giver) gives all of his memories to the new Receiver. These are the memories of the past - way, way back in time before "sameness" (sameness is how their world is described now). These memories change Jonas - he begins to see color, he experiences pain, loss, war; but also love, sunshine, and family. He feels convicted that they cannot live in a world without color, or love, or pain. Jonas and The Giver devise a plan for Jonas to leave escape the community - because if he escapes then all of these memories he now holds will be released into the community and they will begin to experience (or feel) everything in them. Jonas escapes and eventually reaches someplace that he knows is the world how it used to be. This is a fantastic science fiction novel. It demonstrates what the world would be like if we erased pain and anything that would make life difficult (something as simple as hills and mountains) and everyone was the same - same skin tone, hair color; nobody lied, everyone abided by the set rules of the community. It shows a strong character who is willing to sacrifice life to get back to the real things that were in the memories - because life without those things was not worth living anymore. This book shows the value and necessity of love and pain - and real, raw feelings. I wouldn't use this book in my classroom, because I am going to be teaching somewhere in 1-4th grade. I would suggest this book to any older student who wanted to read a science fiction book. I would also find a more age-appropriate book to read with my kids that shares similar themes to this book, because I think they are important to talk about at any age.
  jessicayambra | Apr 15, 2016 |
Genre: Science fiction
This story is about a little boy named Jonas. He lives in a world where the government controls everything, they pick your spouse, your career and your children. When someone decides they want to leave, they are "released". Jonas is different than the other kids, he sees things that most people don't. When he is given a very special position, he learns from the Giver, what the world used to be like, with music and love and color, and he learns what the word "release", really means. Jonas decides that he doesn't like this life, and he wants to escape. This isn't an easy task, but with the help from the Giver, Jonas leaves, and emerges into the rest of the world where there is music and love and color. This is a good example of a science fiction novel, because it describes a world that is very different from the real one. Government has control over everything. I think this would be an exciting book for middle school children to read.
  sophiadale | Apr 15, 2016 |
A young boy named Jonas lives with his mom, dad and sister in a futuristic world where the bad things don't exist. In this society the children are assigned a job based on the things they like and what they are capable of doing. You are assigned a husband or wife and given 2 kids. After getting older they are released into society as a symbol of death. Although in this society everyone looks the same but Jonas stands out. At the Ceremony of Twelve, where he is given a job, is awarded the Receiver of Memory which is who keeps all the society's memory. Jonas is given the memories by a man called The Giver. Jonas was able to help a young boy named Gabriel by giving him good memories. Gabriel is about to get released until Jonas decides that's not fair for him to die and wants to make a change in the world. Jonas and Gabriel enter another world called Elsewhere to make the world all happy and normal. This book is really intriguing and makes you want to guess what is going to happen next all the time. There is many twists and turns that keep you want to keep reading.
GENRE: Science Fiction
USE: New world
More different things the better
  japodaca14 | Apr 14, 2016 |
Genre: science fiction
Why it fits this genre: It suggests a hypotheses for the future.

I would use this book to:
1. teach students about the genre of science fiction.
2. teach students about theme.

Summary: This book is about a boy named Jonas who lives in an idillic world free of wars and pain. At the ceremony of twelve, a ceremony in which the young adults of the community are assigned their job, Jonas is chosen to be the keeper of the memories of the past. He begins spending time with the sole keeper of the communities memories and he realizes that he no longer wants to live in the world he lives in. Jonas becomes determined to escape his world and save those he loves.

Critique: "The Giver" is a good example of science fiction because it considers the way in which the scientific possibility of a world free of memory from pain might affect humans. ( )
  DaliaL. | Apr 14, 2016 |
The Giver is a wonderful science fiction book. It describes the life of Jonas who lives in a community focussed on sameness. He is an 11-year old who is about to turn 12 and go through a ceremony to get his job for life, and yes the head of the community chooses his job. The wait begins for him to receive his job, he was skipped over in the ceremony and everyone in the crowd wonders why. After the rest of the 12ths got their placement Jonas was called again and he received the role of the receiver. his family, that he was assigned to since he was birthed congratulated him. His sister was so happy. After he had started training he was receiving memories and seeing the world differently he was able to see color and feel emotions he wasn't able to feel before. He also started wondering why the community was the way it was. Around this time, his dad had brought home an infant named Gabe who wasn't ready to be placed with a family. Jonas liked Gabe and one night asked to keep Gabe in the room. That night he had transferred a memory of snow to Gabe that the Receiver (his Boss) had given to him the first day on the job. After almost a year of receiving good and bad memories from the past in the communities the Giver and the Receiver (Jonas) decided it is time to change the community and hatch a plan to give the memories to the people. Once Jonas finds out Gabe is going to die because he can't is placed with another family he decides he must leave early and save Gabe. He travels far away with Gabe and was able to give the memories to the community.

I would use this book as an independent reading book for students, also as a class boot to talk about comparisons we can pull from the book and if we could change our world how would we change it.

Media: the cover is photography ( )
  Nicholepeterse | Apr 12, 2016 |
The Giver is a science fiction and tells a story about a “Utopia”, which looks like people there are all happy, and there is no discrimination, judgment, and also no differences. People who lived in this society are arranged by governor and they all have the same and equal life. However, in this situation, people need a people to hold memories of this society. Therefore, Jonas, who is a eleven-year old boy, is assigned his job, which is memory holder. He has all the good memories of this society, but in the main time, he also found there is no color, music and love in this country. Finally he choose to run away from this country, which is no pain and no love.
Use: This science fiction is suited to elementary students because it is easy to understand and also also has a lot of heuristic meanings. I will use this book to tell students what is society with love and also practice their critical thinking on those arguable topics. ( )
  QianqiongWang | Apr 12, 2016 |
Genre: Science Fiction
Media: None other than the Photograph on the cover
Use: Read aloud with students over a large span of time in the class, and have in my class library to share with students interested in reading science fiction.
Critique: This is a fantastic novel! I was able to connect certain concepts in the book and see metaphors that Lowry used. This book is heart wrenching in such a bizarre way and I feel I could read this multiple times and understand different parts each time. it also keeps your curiosity running the whole time! Lowry does a great job of giving enough detail to paint a picture but not enough so that you're constantly asking questions about their livelihood just as Jonas starts to do after receiving memories from the Giver.
  gmorgan14 | Apr 11, 2016 |
Jonas lives in a community where individuality is disregarded, choices are unheard of, and emotions are only superficial (some, like love and pain, are censored). Strict rules govern the citizens, making life easy and predictable, and as a result, no one questions them. Citizens are essentially assigned a particular path in life. Spouses are paired based on compatibility, children are assigned a job that best-suits them upon reaching twelve years old, and each year, children gain new responsibilities according to their particular age. In addition, the population is carefully regulated; unhealthy babies, the elderly, and those who disobey rules, are "released" and never seen again. When Jonas turns twelve, he is assigned the most important, yet most mysterious job, the Receiver of Memory. He trains with the current Receiver of Memory, named the Giver, and learns that it is his job to store all the memories since the beginning to keep citizens of his community safe from memories of the past, to keep the desired "sameness" among the community, and to guide future decisions. The Giver slowly transmits his memories to Jonas, and Jonas slowly understands emotions and concepts he had never felt before, such as love, sunshine, colors, and war. The memories are a mixture of pain and joy, but seeks to overlook the pain. Jonas and the Giver hatch a plan to ease these memories into the rest of the community so they too, can experience these happy emotions. In order to do so, however, Jonas has to flee to a vaguely familiar community, Elsewhere, while the Giver has to stay behind to comfort the community.

I love this book because it explores the power and consequences of decisions. Without decision, what are we left with? In addition, I love the curious-nature of Jonas because a young reader can relate to him. Jonas simply seeks to understand the world around him that he has misunderstood for so long. In addition, the author develops Jonas' character through "showing" and not "telling". From Jonas' interactions with his friends, family, and the Giver, readers can pick out that Jonas is interrogative, and wise. Jonas is constantly questioning the world around him, both through asking questions, and spending time thinking.

MEDIA: no pictures

GENRE: Science Fiction
This is science fiction novel because the community is a dystopian society which arose out of the desire to control the future by disregarding the past. The author presents a far-in-the-future setting, leaving readers wondering, "what if?".

(1) The Giver provides an example of a utopia. Students could discuss the meaning of a utopia. Why isn't a utopia possible? What are other examples of utopias in literature?
(2) The consequences of decisions are prevalent in The Giver. The community is deprived of decisions because of the past. What are the power of decisions?
(3) Students could discuss individuality. What is the effect of discouraging individuality in a society?
(4) What is the power of memories?

AGE-APPROPRIATENESS: Middle school ( )
  akgingerich | Apr 11, 2016 |
6. Every time I read this book, different feeling emerge about it. I have gotten something different out of it each time. I first read it in 8th grade and then again in college. I read it a few times in the past few years when teaching with it. Most recently, I read it TWICE for the Children's/YA Literature class. The first time, I was taken back because I started realizing even more setting details. The second time I didn't read it all the way through but skipped around after watching the movie. I had a much greater appreciation for the book (especially the ending) after watching the movie. I'm not sure I would consider this book among my favorites because it doesn't give you the typical feelings a "favorite" book might, but it certainly is one of the most intriguing books I have ever read.
7. Curricular connections to this book might be using it as a paired text with another book with a similar futuristic "dystopian" setting like 1984 or Fahrenheit 451. You could do a lot with comparing the two texts. ( )
  jmouat | Apr 10, 2016 |
A brief summary:
Eleven year-old Jonas lives in a community where rules are strictly enforced and almost every decision in a person's life is carefully decided by a Committee of Elders. Individuals are expected to use precise language and are trained to apologize for the smallest of infractions. In Jonas' community, husbands and wives are carefully paired by the Committee of Elders. In order to have children, the pair must apply to receive children that are assigned to them by the Committee of Elders. Once the pair's children grow to have families of their own, they go to live with other Childless Adults and eventually the House of Old where the elderly live. In this way, the community becomes one of sameness, where everything is safe and predictable. When Jonas and the other eleven-year old children become "Twelves," they attend a ceremony where they receive their "assignments." These assignments determine the particular field in which each child is suppose to serve for the rest of his/her professional career. During the ceremony where Jonas is to receive his assignment, he is selected for the highly respected and honored position of the Receiver of Memories. Along with the help of the current Receiver, Jonas will be responsible for keeping the memories of the past and using them in order to guide the future of the community. As Jonas is trained by the current Receiver, he begins to realize the truth behind the community that he once knew as home. Instead, Jonas begins to see that his community is void of genuine feelings and deprived of reality. In the end, Jonas takes a tremendous risk and departs for Elsewhere, a mysterious community that lies beyond his own.

My personal reaction:
This book quickly captures the reader's attention as it paints a dystopian community where individuals are deprived of choice and void of emotion. Through the character Jonas, the reader can encounter a number of thought-provoking themes, among which are the value of the individual and the importance of memory. The reader is invited to ponder questions like, "How does knowledge of the past affect the development of the future?" and, "What is human existence without emotion and feelings?" all while following the unpredictable journey of Jonas from "sameness" to reality.

A couple of uses:
- The Giver ends with Jonas encountering a scene similar to one that was shared with him by the Giver. After reading the book as a class, have the students discuss how they interpreted the ending. Was Jonas simply revisiting the memory that the Giver shared with him or did he actually encounter the place he once envisioned?
- After reading The Giver as a class, have students explore and research real life "utopias" - that is, communities that were created to seek a more perfect way of living, whether in the past or in the present.
- As the class goes through the book, select vocabulary words from each chapter that may be new or difficult for the students, such as "obsolete" and "meticulous". Have the students record these words on a chart, along with their meanings and the context in which they were found in the book.

This book is an example of science fiction. Like other books under this category, The Giver makes a hypothesis about the future state of humanity. It does so by painting an imaginary community where humans are void of emotion, deprived of choice, and brainwashed into believing a false sense of reality. ( )
  Lucymae | Apr 9, 2016 |
I think this would be a fantastic book for independent reading in sixth or seventh grade. Boys might especially like this book, since it is told from a young boys perspective. But, because the world the main character is living in is so different from ours, I think it could appeal to either gender. ( )
  AmandaJH | Apr 9, 2016 |
Less than 24 hours to finish this book. Having 3 kids, that's saying something. I enjoyed it very much. I was instantly drawn into the world and had trouble putting it down to face real life. I also knew within the first few chapters that I had to suggest it to my soon-to-be 12 year old daughter. This dystopian world is different than the others that I've read thus far. It all revolves around what "number" or age you are. There is very little, if any choice given to the people in this world. The more you read, the more you find has been taken from these people. Not only choices, but colors, and even feelings. I'm surprised it took me this long to read this epic novel, but I'm so glad I did. I'm anxious to read the rest of the Quartet. ( )
  MynTop | Apr 8, 2016 |
I absolutely love The Giver! I read this book once, long ago, when I was in middle-school but never really got around to finishing it until now. I remember loving it back then and loving it even more now that I got through the whole book. The plot of this story is so compelling. I kept wanting to know what would happen next. it was suspenseful and a true page-turner. The main character, Jonas, was very intriguing. The moment he was chosen to become the next receiver of memory was so exciting to me. There was so many "job titles" in this community that made me want to keep reading to find out what it was all about. The writing in this story was fascinating to me because the world Jonas was living in was a sort of utopia. Everyone was the same and no one was ever "out of line." There was also this question about what getting "released" from the community truly meant. This book was nothing less than captivating from start to finish, and I would definitely recommend it to a friend and/or use it in my future classroom. ( )
  lnativ1 | Apr 4, 2016 |
I read The Giver once a year for the last 20 years because I teach it once a year in my 7th or 8th grade English classes. I am afraid to read the other three novels in the series as I love this book so much that I know I will be disappointed with the later ones. It is listed as a science fiction YA novel, but even if you hate sci fi, you will enjoy it. It provides some of best classroom discussions of the year. I couldn't ask for anything else than that.
I struggled a little with curriculum connections. The best I could come up with is perhaps social studies. If students are studying communism, you could see parallels with The Giver. Communism aimed for a classless society, which is what citizens in The Giver were given. Sameness was a chief principle. ( )
  saolson | Apr 4, 2016 |
This one has been on my to be read pile for some time as the 1994 Newbery Medal Winner and a banned and challenged book. Lowry's book has also been made into a movie which is due to be released in August so this helped to push it to the top of the pile.

The premise of the story seems simple a perfect utopian world without disease, war and unkindness and all your needs met. Everything is black and white and there are no choices to make. Every family has a mom a dad a brother and a sister. There are no birthdays to celebrate and children are given to parents when they are toddlers. Kids only age to twelve at which time they are given a job in the community. They work these jobs to a certain point then they are given a time of relaxation before they are released. If you choose not to do the job you are assigned you can be released. There is only one job that has high regard and that is the role of the receiver. This job is held for a very long time until a new receiver is chosen then the receiver becomes the Giver. This person holds all the memories of the past and the present. It is also up to the reader to interpret the ending it is not neatly laid out like the community, you have the choice to divide what you see in the ending.

After you read the book I would recommend you read Ms Lowry's Newbery acceptance speech it is very enlightening: ( )
  yvonne.sevignykaiser | Apr 2, 2016 |

Genre: Fiction

Summary: Jonas is in a world that is controlled by the government to be completely idyllic and predestined. He receives the career to be the next Giver and has to learn ways from the old Giver. While spending time being an apprentice Jonas learns about the way the world used to be including life in color. This young man tries to escape with his loved ones for there own sake which no one has ever done successfully.
  alewis14 | Mar 29, 2016 |
Yes, still yes. ( )
  dandelionroots | Mar 26, 2016 |
This is one of my all-time favorite books! It is one of the few books that I could read over and over and not get sick of. Reading about someone learning about our world from a seemingly-perfect civilization is interesting, and shows readers how incredibly lucky we are, and that we shouldn't take anything for granted. ( )
  the1jag | Mar 24, 2016 |
The Giver is a book which a word without memory or choices exists with its citizens living happily. One boy, Jonas lives with his mother, father and sister. Jonas's father , a nursery worker, informs them that a new child named Gabriel is going to be living with them until he becomes more behaved or is released. When December comes, it is time for all the 12 year old children to be assigned their new job. As Jonas, the 19th child, is waiting to be assigned his job, the female counsel member completely skipped over him. Confused and afraid, Jonas was told that he had not been assigned a job, but selected as the newest keeper of memories. As the new keeper of memories, Jonas has new rules and privileges, some of which being the ability to ask any question and receive the answer, not be able to share anything about being the keeper of memories, and being able to lie. During his training, Jonas experiences happy memories such as sledding, and the beauty of colors. Soon though, the old Keeper of Memories, also known as the giver, gives Jonas bad memories, like the pain of breaking an arm, and the horror of war, but he also experiences the warmth of love. Going home, Jonas asks his mother and father if they love him, and they reply by laughing at his statement and explaining that the word love is inappropriate for their feelings for Jonas. After a few weeks of training, Jonas gets curious about the release of others. He wants to know where the released people actually go. So after requesting to see the footage oft the release of a new born twin, he watches in horror as one twin is injected and killed. Upon going home, Jonas is informed that Gabriel is being scheduled for a release the next morning. Not knowing how to save Gabriel, Jonas takes matters into his own hands. He takes his bike and leaves the community with Gabriel. After days of peddling on his bike, Jonas hits a bump and is force to walk. The cold breezes of winter makes him worry if Gabriel will be alright. To keep him warm, Jonas gives him a memory of a warm sunny day just as the giver had. And that ends the story of The Giver.
I liked this book because it tells the story of a community of people who never experienced the freedom of choices or the happiness of memories. I found that this book was a heart-warming and inspiring story for people of all ages. Reading this story was a great experience, but I didn't enjoy the ending very much. It wasn't to satisfying because it ended without the reader knowing if the survived and found another civilization to live in. Other than that I enjoyed the book very much. I can't wait to read other works of Lois Lowry. ( )
  TessW.b1 | Mar 24, 2016 |
I love this book and I think it would be great to use for teaching middle school students. This book could definitely be used in a sixth grade classroom to discuss how a story's plot unfolds in a series of episodes and particularly how the characters respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution, in particular Jonas. In eighth grade, you could have students read the book and then watch the movie together in order to see how closely the movie follows the story in the book and evaluate the choices to change things. I could also see this being used in a middle school social studies lesson to discuss how powerful is too powerful when it comes to government. They could also then use this to write informational writing pieces about whether or not the government in the story should have had as much power as they did. ( )
  ddeely | Mar 15, 2016 |
I really enjoyed this book, I thought it had an interesting concept of distopia. I didn't rate it a 5 star because at this time i can't quite put my finger on it but I felt something was missing or rushed. Maybe I will come back to that at another time. ( )
  brandymuss | Mar 15, 2016 |
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