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The Giver Audiobook

The Giver [Audiobook]

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Publisher's Summary

December is the time of the annual Ceremony at which each twelve-year-old receives a life assignment determined by the Elders. Jonas watches his friend Fiona named Caretaker of the Old and his cheerful pal Asher labeled the Assistant Director of Recreation. But Jonas has been chosen for something special. When his selection leads him to an unnamed man, the man called only the Giver, he begins to sense the dark secrets that underlie the fragile perfection of his world.

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

What the Critics Say

  • Newbery Medal Winner, 1994

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (5231 )
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4.2 (4093 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Nikki Salt Lake City, UT, USA 07-09-12
    Nikki Salt Lake City, UT, USA 07-09-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This guy's mouth makes some serious noises..."
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would recommend they read the actual book and skip the audio version. The story is okay, but the quality of the audiobook is not.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rosemary. She was very brave and noble and I like the mystery behind her past.


    What didn’t you like about Ron Rifkin’s performance?

    Many of the sentences trailed off rather than ending strong and clear. He also made noises with his mouth. I assume this happens often with actors, but that stuff is usually edited out.


    Could you see The Giver being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    I guess I could see it. I am not invested enough to guess the cast though.


    Any additional comments?

    The background music was HORRIBLE! They blasted you out with tacky synth music for EVERY SINGLE significant moment! It took me out of the moment because I was rolling my eyes.

    67 of 70 people found this review helpful
  •  
    far_to_go 07-18-13
    far_to_go 07-18-13
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    "Annoying music"
    Would you listen to The Giver again? Why?

    I'm not planning to listen to this again. I've read the book before and like the story very much, but it was interrupted by strange music at inopportune moments. A great book, but not a very good listening experience.


    44 of 46 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alison essex jct, VT, United States 09-08-12
    Alison essex jct, VT, United States 09-08-12 Member Since 2016
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    "Great Story but..."

    I had read this book as a teenager. I thought I would enjoy it on audio. However, the narration is poor. The whiny voice of Jonas was totally grating and the the narrator did not even bother to read with the inflection when the tone of voice was described with adjectives. Even more annoying, possibly, was the music. I don't even know how I got through this one...if it weren't for my nostalgia, I wouldn't have.

    49 of 55 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maria Adkins 08-23-08 Member Since 2015
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    "Thought-provoking"

    Although this is a young adult book, I think it will appeal to any age group and it has lots of layers of thought-provoking debate entwined in a simple story. This reminded me of Orwell's "1984" as it takes place in the future in a watchful society. It is a strange society in which diversity and individualism are not tolerated and everyone lives according to their function in society - perhaps happy - but blissfully unaware of pain and love. You follow the story of Jonas who is a remarkable 11 year-old boy who carries much weight and insight of the community on his shoulders. I definitely recommend this book as it left me haunted and yearning to discuss it with someone else.

    11 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrea Squamish, British Columbia, Canada 03-25-04
    Andrea Squamish, British Columbia, Canada 03-25-04
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    "Listen as a family"

    The Giver is a great introduction to utopian novels. It was very interesting listening to the book with my 10 and 11 year olds. Their innocence saw the ending in a completly different way then I did. We had some wonderful family discussions about what a perfect world is or should be. As a family we highly recommend this book for its entertainment value and the discussions it will prompt.

    35 of 41 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Watery M Cary, NC 08-11-15
    Watery M Cary, NC 08-11-15 Member Since 2016

    Matt

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    "Five Hours of Ron Rifkin's Over-Active Salivary Glands"
    What did you like best about this story?

    I thought the story was well told (targeting an adolescent audience), thought provoking, and moving. It wasn't earth-shattering, being similar to a lot of dystopian-future stories like this one, but I think Lowry included enough creative flair to make it something uniquely her own. I'm glad there are 3 other books in this quartet. I will likely read them all one day. Or listen to them, as long as they have a different narrator.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Ron Rifkin’s performances?

    Not likely. It took me about 45 minutes of listening to figure out what that sound was, every 3 or 4 sentences, like someone swallowing compulsively. Then I figured out it was Ron Rifkin swallowing compulsively every 3 or 4 sentences. After that, I couldn't hear much else besides that. It's like a crying child in a supermarket. Until you notice it, it's just a noise in the background, but once you hear it, you can't stop hearing it. Really, couldn't a tech savvy producer have edited out all of that extra noise from the final cut?


    Any additional comments?

    The musical soundtrack they played constantly through the narration was almost more jarring than Rifkin's constant swallowing. I don't need music to tell me "this is an important part of the story" because I'm listening to the story, have an adult brain, and can figure that out for myself, thank you. Double whammy against whatever producer decided to include the music AND Rifkin's mouth noises. (Unless the intent was to use loud music to cover the noisiest and grossest of Rifkin's sloshing, in which case, I retract the above and say, Kudos!)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deanna 01-20-13
    Deanna 01-20-13 Member Since 2014

    Say something about yourself!

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    "High Hopes Left Me Disappointed"

    I had really high hopes for this book. I am a big fan of YA Dystopian novels, and I'd heard this book was really one of the important ones in the genre.

    I felt like the beginning of this book was really good, I liked where it was going, it had an interesting setting...but about 3/4 through it felt like the author gave up and just wanted it to end. It left way too many loose ends, and just sort of ended.

    I wasn't a huge fan of the narrator, but he did not bother me.

    17 of 21 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alires Highlands Ranch, CO, USA 01-03-04
    Alires Highlands Ranch, CO, USA 01-03-04 Member Since 2016
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    "Going to extremes"

    This is a great book about going to extremes on many different levels. Like Ender's game and Snow Crash, the youth of today have much to teach us about how to live. This book is simply written with observations about society and the implications of our choices and desires for a perfection. Any age will love this book. My 5th grade little sister recommeded this to me, and I have completed graduate school. I have recommeded this book to my friends of all ages.

    36 of 46 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hector Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA 06-16-07
    Hector Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA 06-16-07
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    "The Best Book I Ever Read"

    Nobel Prize winner "The Giver", was like that book they make you read in high school that you dread to actually read. It was my english class read. I flipped through it and did my homework trying to skip as much as could and still pass the class; but towards the end of the class I got hooked into it. There are ideas, questions, and answers in this book that just fascinated me as a teenager. Things I sorta flew by trying to do my homework that made me think everytime.

    Now, I am a pretty intuitive, highly artistic mind, and once I discovered the real heart behind "The Giver" I swear it was like a door opened to me. I loved every second of it. I remember finishing a chapter and walking around school looking at the other students, teachers, and their responsibilites in a total different light. It was almost as if I was part of a society much like the one in this book where we all wait to know what we are supposed to do, and if you don't keep up you're "released" ... But as the book suggests, and I found out as I grew, being released from the machine might not be all that terrible in the end.

    I alarmingly recommend this amazing read for kids and adults alike. I have wondered for ages why are there film versions of "Spiderman", "Jerry Springer", and "The Devil Wears Prada" and not one of this book... Makes one wonder where priorities and film industry goals lie. Anyhow! Listen to this! Will make feel free!

    21 of 27 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Claudia H Philadelphia, PA 08-03-15
    Claudia H Philadelphia, PA 08-03-15 Member Since 2014
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    "A blast from the past"

    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.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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