The way things are

Life is a really hard game. The pieces keep falling out of those teeny little cars!

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Books

I forgot how obsessed with books I really am.

I didn't really read for pleasure while I was at school this semester...There wasn't time. But I bought two books the other day--"Small Steps" by Louis Sachar and "The Giver" by Lois Lowry. I read one of them yesterday and the other today.

Given--they weren't especially long books, or ones that were particularly difficult to read. In fact, "Small Steps" is the sequel (sort of) to "Holes" (the movie of which many of you may be familiar with) and is more of a children's novel. I don't know what's with me and children's novels, but for some reason I just love reading Louis Sachar and Roald Dahl. I think it's more that I like their style, their creativity, their imaginativeness rather than the actual content of their novels. I enjoy the process of reading them.

"The Giver" I read today. There was a bit more depth to this novel, which I like. Something to mentally chew on. But at the same time, it was very simple and straightforward, which complimented the setting of the story.

This novel takes place in what could be the "future" but could also conceivably be the present. It's about a boy named Jonas who lives in a very controlled society. There is no color. No rain or snow. The ground is all flat. Spouses, children, and jobs are assigned by the Elders, the governing body of the society. A strict set of Rules keeps everyone equal--differences are not acknowledged, touch is not acceptable, and those who are a hinderance to the order of society are "released."

When Jonas becomes a Twelve, the age at which jobs are assigned and training for those jobs begins, he is selected to be the new Receiver--the most honored position in the community. He soon learns from the former Receiver (now The Giver) that Jonas is to receive all memories of the past. The Receiver is burdened with the memories of the world, of "Elsewhere," so that the community doesn't have to be troubled by them. The Elders may then call on the Receiver for advice in times of chaos (which are rare).

I won't go any further than that, just in case anyone wants to actually read it. It's really interesting to think about--how crazy it would be if our society became like theirs...

"The Giver" reminds of me of "Fahrenheit 451" by Ray Bradbury. Another really good one. It's a little bit heavier though...a lot more to think about, a lot more symbolism...all sorts of biblical allusions and stuff like that. I enjoyed it, but if you're looking for something simple and interesting, and less disturbing, then I suggest "The Giver." It's short too.

So I finished reading and went upstairs to see if my parents had kept the other Lois Lowry books we used to have. I had read them all and really liked them, but to my disappointment, they were nowhere to be found. I did come across some other really good books though--I already mentioned "Fahrenheit 451," then there's "His Dark Materials" (aka "The Northern Lights") Trilogy, "To Kill a Mockingbird," "The Scarlet Letter" (which I admit was good, but I would never read it again--Nathaniel Hawthorne is too boring)...There were a ton of good books that I was very tempted to steal from my parents. Only then I remembered how small my apartment is. Not to mention my suitcase.

Anyway. I just love reading. Moderation in all things, I must remind myself. If I don't, then books may take over my life.

Mmm. I don't know if that would be so bad.

Okay well I have a date with a blonde and a Brazilian, so I'm out of here. More to come later about how wonderful California is.

2 Comments:

Blogger Klobas said...

Have you read Sachar's Sideways Stories books? I loved those when I was younger. My mom would read them to her classes (she's a teacher).

6:09 PM  
Blogger agirlwho said...

I loved Holes and Small Steps. I read them over summer vacation when I had the time to read voraciously. Isn't young adult fiction great? I also got into Dianne Wynn Jones books like Howl's Moving Castle. I definitely recommend it.

11:57 PM  

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