Saturday, October 06, 2012

Celebrate the Freedom to Read. . . THE GIVER

Kay celebrates THE GIVER by Lois Lowry

When The Giver came out in 1993 and won a Newbery Medal in 1994, I was anxious to read it because I had met Lois Lowry in 1987 at a Young Author’s Symposium in Little Rock, AR when she was popular for her Anastasia series. Then in 1989 she released the historical novel, Number the Stars, which won a Newbery Medal in 1990. When I read Number the Stars I loved it and used it for several school visit presentations.

When I read The Giver, after it won the Newbery Medal, I wasn’t prepared for such a theme: a future that is not a dystopian society but a wonderful place where everything has its place and every person has a job to do that is assigned when they are twelve. We find out more when the main character becomes twelve and he is introduced to the true workings of the place and the “releasing” that takes place almost every day.  When I read this book in 1995 I had nightmares of Joan Baez singing “I Shall Be Released” over and over. 

This book has been challenged because some children may become disturbed at the life and death issues, including “releasing.” Now, whenever students come in to checkout this book, I advise the parents to read the book along with them.  It is definitely one for discussion, either for the plot or whether it should be challenged.

Kay Hommedieu,  Randolph Library


Comments: Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?