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The Giver by Lois Lowry This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

By Bapalapa2, VA

After reading The Giver, I was left confused and disappointed. It seemed as if it would be interesting, but you can't judge a book by its cover. The contents were dull and predictable. Quite honestly, I wouldn't recommend it to any reader seeking a fine piece of literature. It just doesn't suffice.

The Giver is about a young boy named Jonas. He resides in a futuristic society in which each citizen is assigned a job, a spouse, and children. The children are born to mothers who will never get to see them. Trying not to give anymore away, I will only say that Jonas is assigned an important job and is challenged with the release of an innocent child. Jonas is left with the option of leaving his home, job, and family to save the child, or facing the harsh reality of his community and job, and enduring the release of the child.

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61 comment(s)
Hey! I read this review and thought that I wanted to reply, so here goes: First off, you have given zero basis for your idea that this is a predictable story. What part of it was predictable? Why did you think so? Do you think it's something that you predicted, but the average man could not? When writing a review, especially a review on a Prize winner and classic, you're going to need to back your thoughts. As it stands, all your paper is right now is an opinion paper. For example: 'I knew from the beginning that they could only see in black and white. It was so obvious, because that's the only connection between the skin and the apple. Therefore, Fiona's hair was obviously red.' I did not realize this until it was revealed, honestly. I really don't know if anyone short of Oreki could have put those together. Saying something without hard backup from the book itself is an opinion. Ex: 'I hate Harry Potter because it is just so stupid. The characters are so cliche and idiotic. I mean, how unimaginative can you get, Rowling?' Naturally, this isn't true. Harry Potter is awesome. Secondly, this is actually a very imaginative book, especially in a time where fiction selections were so limited. In today's culture, it can be said that everything has already been thought of. In a few decades, it will be said that everything has been written down (most likely, I'm guessing). Most people have a hard time imagining a world without color. It may have been similar to imagining e-mails back then. So I think it is fair to say that this is a very original book for it's time. Thirdly, you have to take into account the skill with which the writer portrays the story. He's very talented in making the conversations seem natural and easy. This is especially true for the family conversation scenes, where the teenager is facing a similar dilemma to that of this world's teen when he struggles with lying to his family. The author is also very good at withholding information until the right moment. He's good at portraying the different emotions in Jonas as her feels these new experiences and explores the new world open to him. Both of these skills really help the story along. I'd also like to say that I love your summary of the story, which is short and precise. Good job. Hopefully, I'll run into you again!
Sep. 15, 2015 at 1:35 PM • Report
I think you may have missed the point- it's less about the story and more about the meaning behind it, which deals with the importance of emotion and free will and the dangers of giving up our freedom for security. The book was written at a fairly low level, so I can agree with and understand your discontent with its writing and style, but the novel does have some worth. The Giver is not meant to be an exceptionally good story, but to convey a message, so I think if you go back and look at it from a more symbolic point of view, you might like and understand it a little bit better. @Bapalapa2
Aug. 06, 2015 at 4:21 PM • Report
I am stuck at a two way street with The Giver. Half of me wants to say that it is such an acclaimed novel because of the messages behind it, not to mention it is a dystopian classic. The other half is in agreement with the review writer. I thought Lois Lowry did a good job developing the story, but the only reason I continued to read it was because it was a required novel for school.
Aug. 04, 2015 at 9:16 AM • Report
Jul. 25, 2015 at 4:08 PM • Report
Excellent review, but why did you dislike it so much? Your review could use more development-but your writing is brilliant!
Jul. 24, 2015 at 10:50 PM • Report
I have to say that I completely disagree. The Giver was written with a wonderful voice, the words were crafted expertly, and the plot was riveting. I never once found it to be boring or dull in any way, and I honestly feel you weren't really READING it. They don't give the Newberry Medal to any book, you know.
May. 24, 2015 at 7:20 PM • Report
Admittedly, the style needed work, and Jonas seemed a bit young to be experiencing some of the situations, and the plot itself was confusing, but it's a good wake up call. Honestly, it seems as if what we are experiencing in this age is a 'watered-down' version of what is portrayed. So yes, the book is someone hard to read, but the lesson is important too. (We just shouldn't abuse style for lesson)
Mar. 06, 2015 at 3:07 PM • Report
I love this book very much, I read it in seventh grade and it was very insightful and twisting. but, i do respect your opinion
Mar. 05, 2015 at 3:26 PM • Report
In sixth grade my teacher made us rewrite the ending to the book because my whole class disliked it. It isn't a very good book, but the idea it conveys is very strong. I wouldn't recommend the book to anyone as well, but I think that it's a very good display of a true dystopian world according to a dictionary's definition.
Feb. 09, 2015 at 5:15 PM • Report
My sixth grade teacher made my class do the same thing, for the same reasons. I was wondering if you were one of the students in that class.
May. 20, 2015 at 7:54 AM • Report