Jonas lives in his own Community, where people are assigned everything in their lives from wives to house to jobs, where emotions are dampened by a pill and food is always available, where everything is orderly and rules are to be obeyed without question. At the onset of the book, it seems like an ideal world and Jonas does not question it. Until at his 12th ceremony, he is named the new Receiver of Memories. Once he meets the old man, the Giver, he starts to learn of how things were before the Communities and how even a perfect world contains its own horrors.
Amazingly I had never read this Newbery Award winner before. I genuinely liked it. There were parts that I found especially disturbing, like when Jonas finds out what it means to be "released" and the pills they start taking at the onset of puberty. Lowry creates a world here that shows that a "perfect" society comes at a price. I know this is an oft challenged/banned book but I don't think that I would have really understood certain things when I was younger. I think this is one of those books that you see differently as you grow up.
I actually listened to this one and Ron Rifkin, the narrator, does an excellent job. He gives Jonas the perfect voice and creates tension when needed. The only thing about the audiobook was the little music accompaniments to the memories. I found those distracting.
*Read for the Take a Chance Challenge - Public Spying book
*Also counts for Audio Book Challenge