The Giver Graphic Novel

adapted & illus. by P. Craig Russell. 192p. HMH. Feb. 2019. Tr $22.99. ISBN 9780544157880.
RedReviewStarGr 6 Up—Jonas lives in a colorless world where everyone is content and conformity is the key to serenity. At the age of 12, in a ceremony that determines Life Assignments for each citizen, he's chosen to be the community's "Receiver of Memories." He begins training with the Giver, an old man who is the sole guardian of the community's dark and concealed history. Jonas learns not only of sunshine, color, and love but also of pain, war, and death. Confronted with this reality, he faces difficult choices and discovers that the wisdom he now holds could determine the fate of his entire civilization. This striking retelling of the modern classic blends words and images to create a brilliant new representation of Lowry's dystopian conflict between the ideals of free will and security. The artwork, rendered in blue pencil and grayscale, perfectly depicts Jonas's stark, dysfunctional society, and the measured introduction and brief glimpses of color keep readers hopeful for a brighter future. The characters are distinct, and the action flows well, evoking the feeling of the original work. Dialogue is pulled directly from the source material and heightens the story line and Jonas's emotions.
VERDICT This stunning work will introduce The Giver to a brand-new audience and will also delight longtime fans.

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