Told with deceptive simplicity, this is the provocative story of a boy who experiences something incredible and undertakes something impossible. In the telling it questions every value we have taken for granted and reexamines our most deeply held beliefs.
©1993 Lois Lowry; (P)1993 Random House, Inc., Listening Library, An Imprint Of Random House Audio Publishing Group
"A powerful and provocative novel." (The New York Times)
"Lowry is once again in top form...unwinding a tale fit for the most adventurous readers." (Publishers Weekly)
"The author makes real abstract concepts, such as the meaning of a life in which there are virtually no choices to be made and no experiences with deep feelings. This tightly plotted story and its believable characters will stay with readers for a long time." (School Library Journal)
"This is a compelling prospect for family listening...[Ron] Rifkin's juxtaposition of the young boy and the old Giver has tremendous effect." (AudioFile)
Say something about yourself!
I seem to have gotten this book by mistake. That is, I never would have ordered it if I had known what it is about. So, what is it about? Seemingly the author does not want us to know. However our main character is selected in future world as a "receiver." He proceeds to be trained by an old "receiver" who apparently knows everything, presumably about pain and choice. Both of these are now gone from society. I must say, this selection was mostly a waste of my time.
I read this book when I was in elementary school and I got the audiobook to listen to with my niece. I loved this book when I was little and I was hoping that she would to.
In retrospect, I wish I had just given her the book because I felt the narration lacked something. I remember being very moved by the book and I didn't get that feeling from this. It might have been a combination of the Rifkin's narration and the weird musical interludes.
The Giver is best left to hard copy if you truly want to savor this classic story.
I value intelligent stories with characters I can relate to. I can appreciate good prose, but a captivating plot is way more important.
The Giver hints at some of the themes explored by Brave New World and 1984, but unlike either of those iconic works, The Giver doesn't seem to have a clear thesis.
The mechanics of the dystopia are never explained... how did it come to be? What is the point of keeper of memories? What is the goal of the society? What's outside of it?
The Giver ends on an ambiguous, surrealistic note, and for the first time the prose turn poetic. These are not complements. Instead of an ending that fits the style and theme of the story, Lois Lowry made a cowardly, lazy exit from the plot.
The best thing I can say about this book is that it was short.
A utopian society and human nature collide. It's an interesting post apocalyptic view of a possible future. There are enough elements of current society to make you pause and think. Hmmm, I wonder... could this be a future for our childrens - childrens - children?
I liked this a great deal. It's a book I will definitely listen to again so that I can gather in more stunning detail. I have also purchased the "read it" version for the experience of ... well ... actually reading it.
The book explores coming-of-age themes in an entirely new way, such that it's actually somewhat hard to convey. Jonas is 11, almost twelve, and lives in a "perfect" utopian community where everyone is always content and safe and healthy and does their part and fulfills their roles in perfect harmony and peace.
The children all have their perfect places to fill in their perfect families and eventually come to their 12th year when the community comes together to celebrate the assignment of each child's role in the community. They are each assigned their professions on this special day and it's an exciting time for everyone. And in a very rare event, Jonah is given the assignment of "Receiver of Memories." As he begins his training, he meets the now very old man who, as the current memory keeper, now becomes "The Giver" who begins to give Jonah memories that the community doesn't want to know and doesn't want to share, but doesn't want to lose.
So, as Jonah begins to understand the true cost of a "perfect" life he is faced with some terrible decisions.
I am haunted by this book.
The music kills me. It randomly comes in for a few minutes then goes away. It's it's loud and distracting. It would be a 5 out of 5 if it didn't have the music.
The story is a great beginning to the series. I read it 20 years ago and loved it then and love it now. The audiobook, though, leaves a lot to be desired.
Someone who would have personified Jonas with a less annoying and whiny personality. This isn't Jonas!
What's up with the crazy music in this audiobook? Instead of enhancing the production, it was distracting and annoying.
I liked Ron Rifkin as The Giver but not as Jonas, a little too whiny at times with his voice.
The book was amazing at bringing you along for the ride, the most sad part was Jonas seeing what the 'release' was. Really good character development and would recommend to anyone. As with others, the cheesy music was really bad and sometimes made it tough to hear the story.
Yes - it is a very original plot with thought-provoking ideas. It's a book that you would want to read over again and despite the parts I didn't enjoy about the audiobook, it was overall still a good performance.
There is music that is added to reading of the book that can be detracting and it seems very out of place. For me this was the most annoying part of the audiobook. Another minor thing is that there are sometimes pauses longer than normal between chapters that could have been easily cut out.I wasn't a fan of the narrators voice- it was a bit whiny and the different character voices were irritating at times.
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