Lowry, Lois. The Giver. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1993.
Annotation: Living in an ideal community Jonas’ beliefs are shattered when he receives his life’s assignment and is exposed to another way of life.
You can’t miss what you’ve never known. Jonas had no idea his life was missing anything until given the responsibility of receiver for his ideal community, a community filled with sameness and lives governed by rules. He was assigned to receive all memories of those that came before him. With these memories Jonas experiences pain but also love, colors, and music, things unknown to the rest of the community.
“Our people made that choice, the choice to go to Sameness. Before my time, before the previous time, back and back and back and back. We relinquished color when we relinquished sunshine and did away with differences…we gained control of many things. But we had to let go of others.”
Could you deny others the joy of memories, of choice, of differences? After realizing another way of life exists, imperfect as it may be, can Jonas live denying others the feelings he now knows?
Newbery Medal, 1994
Regina Medal, 1994
William Allen White Award, 1996