Monday, May 7, 2007

SPOILERS for The Giver

Full Review can be found HERE.

First, how unbearably sad was the Giver? (the person, not the book itself?) His pain is so great.

Second, the image in the final pages Will. Not. Leave. Me. It's so ambigous, and intentionally so. I am sure that all the middle-schoolers reading it read the happy interpretation, but I can't help but read the sad one. It made me so upset that I couldn't read anything else. I had to leave my house. I want so bad to just go snatch up my little monkey. Please, if you have read this, please comment and tell me how you interpret it?


raidergirl3 May 7, 2007 at 3:07 PM  

I believe there is a sequel so you might want look into that.
It was a great book, and I want to find out what happened to the Giver and the rest of the community after he left. I went with the happy ending idea for Jacob; it's the rest of his family I wondered about.
I can't imagine what an impact this would have had on me as a teenager.

Lisa May 7, 2007 at 3:31 PM  

I'll have to see if there is a sequel.

I also meant to mention the scene with his father and the twin and Jonas' outrage. It made me cry, the whole thing. I *knew* was release was, of course, from the beginning, but I didn't expect the workers to DO it. I thought there would be an occupation for it. That scene with the baby about killed me.

And then The Giver wanting to be with his daughter instead of leaving with Jonas.

I just keep thinking about Gabe at the end and I want to cry. My son is a toddler. it's too close to home, that innocence. My monkey doesn't sleep perfectly yet either!

NOLADawn May 7, 2007 at 5:02 PM  

Ok, I just have to say, I was right where you are the first time I read it. Then, we had a discussion about it in a Gifted Lit class and there were three of us (out of 10) who thought that Gabriel had died at the end. The rest thought it was the happy ending.
Now, I'm telling you... go read the rest of the trilogy!!! Gathering Blue is next, it doesn't have Gabe in it, but you have to read it to get the final book in the trilogy. The last book is The Messenger. It won't take you a day to finish both!
See, I knew you'd love it. Every time I come across an adult who has not read this yet, I tell them you MUST read it now! :)

Mercy's Maid May 7, 2007 at 6:28 PM  

The other two books are more "companions" than sequels. They use the same society and some of the same characters, but you're left to wonder about some things. The Giver is my favorite of the three and Messenger is my least favorite,but they're all really great!

Megan May 8, 2007 at 4:45 AM  

My copy of Messenger shower up today.
I am very excited about it. I enjoyed Gathering Blue but it didn't have the same poignancy as The Give. It seems that the more I read in this genre the more I want to read. I am having a hard time staying focused on the books of my list. Oh well, there are worse problems to have.

NOLADawn May 8, 2007 at 6:13 AM  

I guess I see it as a sequel because some questions from The Giver are answered in Messenger.

Camille May 9, 2007 at 6:00 AM  

You definitely have to read The Messenger and Gathering Blue. You will find out what became of Jonas and Gabe, although they are no longer main characters. I loved the whole trilogy, but The Giver is my favorite, hands down. I went with the happy interpretation when I read it. And yes, I think having a small child really makes this book hit home. I have a 2 1/2 yr. old boy and a two-month old girl and what happens in the book just breaks your heart. But I did love all three books so much, my poor husband had to keep hearing the plots as I went along. :)

Maggie May 26, 2007 at 9:52 AM  

This is my least favorite genre, cos I just don't see happy endings. I must be very fatalistic. The whole sled scene, to me, was just his death or bright light scenario.

I watched 28 Weeks last night, and although the movie was excellent, I HATED it. Same with The Road, if I'm given an ambigous ending, I always go for the negative result.

The Dalai Lama April 3, 2008 at 2:29 PM  

The ending is deliberately "open." The first time I read it, I had the same reaction as you (upset, sad, couldn't read anything else, etc.) I recently read it for a literary interpretation class and notices that it gives you a few clues to say "Jonas didn't hallucinate and die":

1) Jonas never heard music. The Giver never gave him those memories. When he is seeing what is (presumably) a village, finds the sled, etc, he hears music, indicating that it is real, not imagined.
2) It clarifies that by the end he had lost all the memories the Giver had placed in him. He couldn't remember the sled, hill, etc (supposedly); if he couldn't remember it, then he couldn't hallucinate about it.

As long as you have some interest in dystopian literature, you might try reading "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omalas" By Ursula LeGuin (I think that's spelled correctly.) It has a very different kind of focus than the "sad" endings that one of the other comments mentioned.

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