Timeless Thursday: The Giver by Lois Lowry
January 14, 2010 in Collins, Suzanne, Lowry Lois, Middle School Teachers, Timeless Thursdays, Young Adult Novels Tags: Catching Fire, Lois Lowry, Newberry Medal, Suzanne Collins, The Giver, The Hunger Games, Timeless Thursday
Whenever I read books like The Giver, I am fascinated with the way the author has created this amazing future world that is so incredibly screwed up. I am a big fan of The Hunger Games series which I’ve wrote about a couple times on this blog. When reading Suzanne Collins’s series, I an so reminded of The Giver. I don’t know if anyone else has ever been reminded of Lois Lowry’s book when reading The Hunger Games series. I love both, and so I had to remind everyone about The Giver today on Timeless Thursday!
In The Giver’s world, a twelve-year-old (can you imagine?) receives their life assignment at the annual Ceremony in December. Jonas is scared and wondering what type of Assignment he’ll receive from the Elders. Nobody wants to be a Sanitation Laborer for the rest of their lives. So, when Jonas is given a very special assignment when he’s twelve–he has been selected to be the next Receiver of Memory. He has to spend time with the Giver. It’s a very special honor, but he’s scared and wondering what in the world is in store for him, especially when he starts to learn the truth about the “perfection” in his world.
Although this book isn’t as old as some of my other Timeless Thursday selections (copyright 1993), it’s still extremely popular today and studied in many middle school or junior high classrooms. I also think it’s still going to be around for many, many more years because the plot can be discussed at length, the characters analyzed, and personal connections made with both when readers put themselves in Jonas’s world and ask, “What if this was me? What if I lived in this world? What would I do? What would I believe?”
If your children or students have read The Hunger Games or Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins, you could also do a compare/contrast activity with The Giver by Lois Lowry. Students might also be inspired to write their own stories set in a future world where people think they have gotten life right and better, but they haven’t. Heck, I even have a rough draft or two of a beginning of a novel about that very topic!
One last thing. . .The Giver won the Newberry Medal in 1993.