Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Giver Trilogy

The Giver

The way Lois Lowry’s The Giver is continually singled out as a stand-alone novel will never cease to amaze me. On page size alone, it certainly qualifies as a novel, but the funny thing is that the content simply isn’t enough. When you read a story, you expect an introduction, maybe a little interesting stuff on the side, a beginning rising action early on, a climax toward the middle-end-ish area, and a finish. The Giver moves at a leisurely pace and easily gives you the first two requirements; and it continues on that stroll until it tosses a climax at you from nowhere and ends so abruptly that you’re not even sure what just happened. It doesn’t feel like you finished a book; it feels like you just finished a few chapters.

However, if it’s treated as if it really is only a few chapters, then the problem disappears. The best way to look at it as a novel, and frankly, the only way to bestow upon The Giver the justice that it deserves, would be to combine it with its two sequels, Gathering Blue and Messenger. By doing that, you get the rest of the picture that is so jarringly cut off in The Giver, and the three together easily fit as one volume when put together.