Thursday, March 05, 2015

The Giver Finale Heartbreaking, But Triumphant

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

(Note:  Although this review will not contain spoilers from Son, it may inadvertently spoil plot surprises from The Giver, Gathering Blue, or Messenger.  As always, I recommend reading books in a series in order.)

No one in the community knows who she is or from whence she came.  They only know that she washed up on their shore one day, with no knowledge of her life before.  Except for her name—Claire—the girl knows nothing of herself.  Then, vague memories start floating through her mind.  It's only then that Claire recalls the place of her birth—a bland, colorless world devoid of affection and personal choice.  A place where children are Assigned a duty which they must fulfill.  Even if it means becoming pregnant at 14 years old with a baby who will be given to an appropriate family, never to be known by his Birthmother.  As a Vessel, Claire should have borne the infant and forgotten him, moved on with her life.  But, even now, she can't forget her son.  She'd give anything—anything—to see him again.

The road to Gabriel is an impossible one.  It will require everything Claire has—and more.  Can she make the ultimate sacrifice in the name of love or will she, finally, allow herself to let go of the son she's never forgotten?  

Son, the final installment in The Giver Quartet by Lois Lowry, ties up a lot of unanswered questions from the first three books in the series.  It is, however, Claire's story.  She's a courageous young heroine, one whose desperate plight the reader can't help but care about.  As Claire fights to see her son again, we can't help but ponder the questions Lowry's been forcing us to ask all throughout this series, questions about freedom, personal choice, imagination, consequences, pain, and passion.  It's a satisfying finale about the fierceness of a mother's love, the war between good and evil, and the beauty that exists in the world even in the midst of pain.    


(Readalikes:  The Giver, Gathering Blue, and Messenger by Lois Lowry)

Grade:


If this were a movie, it would be rated:


for violence and vague references to sex/sexual abuse

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

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