Thought-provoking, enthralling, and awesome!
It's a similar feel to A Brave New World and 1984, but not. Also similar to the movie The Village. All about a life of ease and simplicity at the cost of much, much more. A story of breaking free.
Jonas. He's a young boy who has his eyes opened to the stifling nature of his community. He's inquisitive and honest.
I LOVE this book. I read it for the first time in 7th grade - before it was banned in schools. I try to read it once every few years. I'm new to Audible so I downloaded it for my husband and I to read. He loved it as well. The only negative is Ron Rifkin's never ending case of dry mouth. Smacking lips really annoy me, so it was hard to get passed that. However, he did an amazing job reading the characters and the story was top notch, as always.
I'm in my 50's and find it hard to find a compelling story that is not based on crime/violence. They are out there, of course, but I go through them quickly, so I'm always searching, searching... I decided to try the Newbery Medal winners. This was the first such story. Fantastic! An incredibly delightful surprise. It really held my attention and made me think deeply about all kinds of things we take for granted, like the ability to see color and to make choices. I'd love to talk to young people about how they understand and relate to the story. Wonderful, wonderful work, Lois Lowry.
There we a lot of long, long pauses almost to the point I thought my player battery had died and at times it was hard to hear the narration over the music.
The reader was excellent. Only thing i did not like was the quality of the recording. It sounded static-y on some parts. Loved this book even though I'm an adult. It was very thought provoking and I could definitely see our society heading that same direction. I have not experience a book this unique in a long time.
Jonas - wonderful character development. You really sympathized with him and what he was experiencing. did not like how she ended the book though. it left a lot of questions unanswered.
all of them...he was excellent. he did the best w/the Giver. It's amazing he can get his voice so different on all of them.
when jonas found out what release truly meant. also at the ending what had happened to him and gabe. very sad ending... but also realistic.
I don't know who to recommend this book to. It's a book for children but I can't imagine why. It is depressing and dark and if I were a kid, I'd never want to read something like this.
This book was so unrealistic. I know I was supposed to use my imagination (I love Sci-Fi as much as the next gal) but this was just too far out. It was dark and depressing and the characters were totally boring.
Well recorded and well narrated
When the main character finds out what being 'released' means.
No favorites I enjoyed them all.
I loved the story and how she slowly shows you sociality that they are in. How controling it is. I love how when you see truth in this book. You can't unsee it.
Wow, that picture actually looks like me.
...but still well worth the listen. Great performance by Rifkin as well.
The Giver offers a vision of the future that is grim and weird, but always intriguing. In books like The Hunger Games or Feed, it is easy to see how current trends lead into the strange future worlds of those stories, but The Giver is less clear. Why family and community life is so regimented and twisted in this world is never fully explained; was there a great war or the rise of a dictator or what? Also, how big is this world -- are we only reading about one city-state? Are the other communities (like the one on the other side of the river) much different than this one? These ommissions don't harm the story, as it remains highly readable and consistent, but they do muddy the waters when it comes to figuring out what inferences we should draw and what moral the story is driving at.
But hey, I loved the story, and I thought the narrator did a superb job. I plan to get the next books in this series.
The book starts slowly but depicts the utopian society well. The writing and descriptions are strong. I give the book three stars for that. But I found most of what was shocking to be predictable, and the ending was a letdown. The author didn't know how to end it, so he left it vague for the reader to figure out. Was it a dream? Was it real? Was it magic? Was it some benevolent deity? You decide. No, Mr. Author, you decide -- that's your job, not mine.
The setting is a spin on some old ideas. An Orwellian society was done in, well, 1984. The idea of society's sacrificial lamb has been explored before, such as Jackson's short story "The Lottery" which came out in 1948.
And there were huge plot holes. The author had a strong theme and point to make, which I applaud, but didn't plug the holes. I would have enjoyed this more if I wasn't constantly bothered by pesky questions.
Warning: slight spoilers...
If you buy the vague existentialism of everyone's feelings and memories being contained in one person and released violently if he/she dies, fine, but if they are so dangerous why do they leave it all up to one person? They think of everything else, so what about a backup Giver in case the one and only Giver decides to, I don't know, off himself because he can't take the suffering and isolation anymore? And seeing color is due to physical hard wiring, every mammal has it to a certain extent. You can't lose it because you can't remember what war or snow is like.
And the big one: you take a 12 year old who has not experienced suffering of any kind, then torture him every day for a year, tell him he is going to be an outcast for the rest of his life, tell him he has nothing to look forward to but a life of pain and isolation, tell him there will be no one he can talk to about it until some decades later when he is going to inflict all this on some other poor kid that he has to select himself... why are you surprised when the kid tries to escape? And I can't believe the last Receiver selected was the first since "back and back" who killed herself. This would happen every time.
And finally, where does the kid pedal his bike, for hours and weeks on end? If he was going through forest thick enough to hide from airplanes, where did he find roads to ride on?