The Giver, by Lois Lowry (1993), follows 12-year old Jonas who lives in a strict and isolated community that favors sameness. Here everyone is assigned a job that they will have the rest of their life and what the elders, The Committee of Elders, say is always right. To Jonas’ surprise he is assigned the job of becoming the next Receiver of Memory which is the top job in the community. With the help of the current Receiver of Memory, known as The Giver, you follow Jonas as he discovers all the past memories that those in the community have given up. He learns that his seemingly perfect community is not as great as everyone thinks.
The story really makes you think and it provides the opportunity for a lot of thoughtful discussions. This book is high quality because it highlights the importance of individuality and acceptance of those who are different in a very thought provoking and unconventional way. I would recommend this book to those 11 and older as some of the material is more mature and abstract.
Published by Houghton Mifflin