Son

Lois Lowry, Author
Lois Lowry. Houghton Mifflin, $17.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-547-88720-3
Reviewed on: 09/10/2012
Release date: 10/02/2012
Drawing characters and themes from The Giver and its companions, Gathering Blue and Messenger, Lowry concludes her Giver Quartet nearly 20 years after the Newbery Medal–winning first book was published. The story is divided into three sections, and in the completely absorbing opening, Lowry transports readers back to the horrifying world from which Jonas came. The spotlight is on 14-year-old Claire, a Birthmother who is given an emergency Caesarean to save “the Product.” The child survives, but Claire is coldly “decertified” and sent to work elsewhere, mystified as to what happened to her and her baby. Those familiar with The Giver will feel the pieces fall into place as Claire figures out which Product is hers and tracks his progress. Part two details Claire’s decade-long struggle to remember who she is, and it suffers slightly from having a main character afflicted with a well-worn plot device (amnesia); the final third reunites characters from all three previous novels for a showdown with evil incarnate. If the latter sections don’t quite keep up with the thrilling revelations of the first, Lowry still ties together these stories in a wholly satisfying way. Ages 12–up. (Oct.)
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