Welcome to the most exciting (to me) idea which I have dredged out of my mind – Throwback Thursdays. It’s “a thing” on Facebook and Tumblr where people post old pictures of themselves… but I decided to do a spin-off here, and instead post about books from my childhood that I enjoyed reading, or books I have specific memories about as a child or teen. This will happen every other Thursday, and the Thursdays in between I will be doing book reviews of books that I am currently reading – or I will do updates on my WIPs or similar. At least, that’s the plan right now. 😉 As many plans are, it is subject to change.
But on to the book!! The Giver by Lois Lowry was a book that my sister read when she was fifteen or so and I was eleven/twelve (we’re three and a half years apart). I wanted so desperately to read it after she did, because it was a YA novel!! I could read YA novels!! I was grown up enough to!! Honest!! …but she didn’t let me. She said that it was too depressing for me to read (which probably sparked an argument between us, come to think of it), and now that I’ve recently read it – I have to agree. I won’t give away the ending, since I don’t want to spoil it for anyone… but it was a very interesting dystopian novel. Honestly, I think that adults get more out of it, perhaps, than children/youth would.
I found myself getting caught up in Jonas’ story, and when the Giver gave him memories of color and love and other feelings – things that we take for granted – I wondered… what does this “Sameness” look like, in the community where Jonas lives? Is everything grey and flat – since he wasn’t even able to envision a hill without the Giver helping him? How was his world lit – since he didn’t know what “sun” was until the Giver gave the memory of it to him? What was the weather like in his world – since he didn’t know of “snow” until the Giver showed him? I can’t imagine a world where everything is The Same… which, in turn, makes me think about how amazing all of those things are, all of the things that we just take for granted day by day. The sun, the moon, the stars, the breeze, the colors… I could make endless lists. He didn’t know what “death” was for the majority of the novel either.
All in all, I highly recommend this if you’re looking for a good, quick dystopian novel. I look forward to reading the other books in the “series” that Lowry wrote all set in the same world (I think – or at least, very similar worlds). I am glad, really, that I didn’t read this book when I wanted to, even though I really, really wanted to at the time. 😉 I think it might’ve overwhelmed me – or else I wouldn’t have understood it at all. One of the two, and I’m not sure which.