Nicholas (nwhyte) wrote,
Nicholas
nwhyte

The Giver, by Lois Lowry

Second paragraph of third chapter:
It was the first thing Jonas noticed as he looked at the newchild peering up curiously from the basket. The pale eyes.
Jonas lives in a future society where all roles are assigned to each citizen for life at the age of twelve; parenting is sort of communal; thought and speech are rigidly controlled; and the dirty secret is euthanasia of the elderly, disabled and misfits. It's quite a short book, in the course of which Jonas allies with a wise old man whose role is to experience and retain painful memories so that the rest of the people won't be bothered; and eventually our hero escapes - but to what?

Somehow this got onto my wishlist (on a recs list backed by geekette) and I got it for myself with a Christmas book token. It scores very highly on the Goodreads/LibraryThing stats, which suggests that it's a course book for a lot of American schools. I am not sure that I rate it all that highly myself. I don't really see what Lowry is pushing back against, unless it's the general idea of conformity and sameness and a defence of individuality. Living as I do in a country with a relatively liberal euthanasia law, I think that subject can also be treated with more nuance than it gets here. Still, what do I know? It won the Newbery Medal. You can get it here.

This was my top unread sf book, and my top unread book by a woman. Next on both lists is The Tiger's Wife, by Tea Olbreht.
Tags: bookblog 2020
Subscribe
  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 0 comments