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Monday, January 26, 2015

Giver Companion Novel As Powerful, Thought-Provoking As Its Predecessor

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

With the club foot she's had since birth, Kira should have been kicked out of her community long ago.  If it hadn't been for the protection of her mother—a skilled weaver, highly valued in the village—she would have been sent to the Field of Leaving, where the dead and useless are buried.  When her mother dies, Kira fears the worst.  To her great shock, not only is she spared death, but she's given a home inside the luxurious Council Edifice.  Because of her magical talent with a needle, Kira's been given a special job.  An important job.  One that she must perform to perfection, no matter how much it drains her.  

At first, Kira's honored by the appointment.  But, the more time she spends in the Edifice and the better she gets to know the other "gifted" people in residence there, the more uneasy she becomes.   With the Council controlling these unique talents for their own purposes, Kira and her comrades are little more than slaves trapped in gilded cages.  This fate is better than death, surely, but what will become of them when they've outlived their usefulness?  As Kira tries to make sense of her new place in her old world, she makes many incredible discoveries—revelations that will, ultimately, make her question where she really belongs.

Considering The Giver's ambiguous ending, it's natural to assume that Gathering Blue continues Jonas' story.  Not so.  Although it's set in the same general world Lois Lowry introduces in The Giver, Gathering Blue is a completely different story with a whole new set of characters (although the people from both books do intersect in Messenger and Son).  It is similar to its predecessor, however, in tone, theme, and the deceptively simple nature of its presentation.  The novel's bleak landscape provides the perfect background for a tale that's both imaginative and colorful.  Harsh but hopeful, Gathering Blue is a must-read for anyone who loved The Giver.   

(Readalikes:  The Giver; Messenger; and Son; by Lois Lowry)


If this were a movie, it would be rated:

for violence

To the FTC, with love:  I bought a copy of Gathering Blue from Amazon with a portion of the millions I make from my lucrative career as a book blogger.  Ha ha.  

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