The Giver, by Lois Lowry



I am not exactly sure how old I was the first time I read The Giver, but I believe it was around the age of 12. As a young impressionable preteen, Lois Lowry gave me one of my first illustrations of the importance of personal freedom. Coming from a rather politically minded family I often sat through conversations regarding rights, agency, and the power to choose for oneself. As I was already developing some strong political convictions I somehow knew it was essential that we, as humans, kept our personal freedom to choose, however, until I read this book I never fully understood the reason WHY.


As Jonas walks through the experiences of his first 12 years of life, the reader (even a young reader) can see the personal loss of living in such an extreme communal environment. Basic issues that we, as free Americans, take for granted each day suddenly become real injustices. Things we experience naturally like dreaming, seeing color, soothing a crying child, choosing a career/employment, feeling cold/hot, experiencing hunger, sexual attraction, giving and receiving love, and adrenaline all become very personal issues of basic freedom.  When Jonas is presented to the Giver to begin receiving the memories of the people from generations before, His wisdom and strength give him the will to break out of his captivity and seek the liberty all humans desire. The pain and suffering he endures throughout his journey provide him with the necessary comparisons to find true happiness.

Although found in the “Young Readers” section of the bookstore, The Giver is a must read for everyone! Now more than ever, we are faced with so many leaders who are seeking, at every turn, for ways to take away our personal freedom to choose. Throughout this politically active year let us remember the importance of taking responsibility for our actions and fighting to preserve our right to live freely, as we strive each day to find the happiness we all yearn to experience.



I love this book! I read it at your house one summer and I have often thought about how good it was. I think it's time to get it from the library and read it again! :)

By Jamie Webster (not verified)

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