The Giver is set in a dystopian future and, since it’s for the YA crowd, it’s simpler than other staples in the genre. I’ve read criticism to this effect, but it’s not productive criticism. The Giver’s simplicity makes it accessible to a younger audience and its narrow scope keeps it focused.
The novel outlines Jonas’ road to maturity and adulthood at the ripe ol’ age of 12 in a warped and futuristic world. Life in his community is tightly regulated, but seemingly happy. Children do not have individual birthdays, but attend a collective ceremony for everyone in their year. These ceremonies impart different gifts and responsibilities to each age group to affirm their role in the community. Jonas is forced to recalibrate his relationship with his peers when he is placed under the Giver’s tutelage instead of working in a traditional occupation. As the Receiver, he will encounter history, wisdom, and pain that he would never know otherwise. read more