Tuesday, November 7, 2017

The Giver


Not sure what to make of this novel.
It seemed too short, a bit rushed, the ending unsatisfying and what the hell..

Twelve-year-old Jonas lives in a seemingly ideal world. Not until he is given his life assignment as the Receiver does he begin to understand the dark secrets behind this fragile community.

1994 Newbery Medal winner. Twelve-year-old Jonas lives in a seemingly ideal world. Not until he is given his life assignment as the Receiver does he begin to understand the dark secrets behind this fragile community. (goodreads)


First thing you notice that this novel is for a younger audience, because I'm already adapted to more detailed novels, where more emphasis is laid upon character development and more of those precious words used in book reviews.

For the most part the novel is quite entertaining, although a bit dead on for my taste, it did enough to hold my interest with the change of Jonas into someone who can think for himself.
That's actually the theme of the novel. What does it mean when ordinary people can't make their own choices anymore, in order to avoid making the wrong choice? What does it cost to have that safety?

I really had a 'WTF' moment at the end. It's like you're casually riding your car or bicycle along a neat and straight path and suddenly the keel over and fall into a cliff. A cliff you didn't expect in the least.

The Giver is a dystopian future disguised as an utopian society. What this consists of is told very straightforward through Jonas, who gets elected to be The Receiver of Memory.
Jonas his job is to receive memories from The Giver, an elder whose name we don't learn and who seems to bear every memory, so the others can go without and live their life of sameness. Which actually even means that they don't even see color, hear music, make choices, nothing.. everyone the same and everything gets decided for them.

We don't get into the inner workings of this society, we only see what Jonas sees and that is enough for him to make his escape. I'd liked to know more of this society. The reasons for its origins, the people behind the scenes, because someone has to be pulling strings somewhere, more of the background Jonas lives in, but I guess that once you delve deeper this novel quickly evolves from preteen to young adult.

It was a nice read, but I might've been a bit too old for it.