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Author Lois Lowry

Newbery Medal winning children’s author Lois Lowry on the last in “The Giver” series, and J.K. Rowling after Harry Potter.

Lois Lowry, author of The Giver, at her home in Cambridge, MA.

Lois Lowry, author of The Giver, at her home in Cambridge, MA.

American kids by the school-load read “The Giver” – Lois Lowry’s dystopic tale of a society where everything is planned and calm and colorless, and freedom is gone.  Jobs and mates are assigned.  Life is utterly predictable.  A few jobless college grads may be longing for just a piece of that right about now, but the bigger lesson has gone deep.

It takes some pain to know pleasure.  Some unknowns to know freedom.  Lowry has just written her last in “The Giver” series.  She’s with us.

This hour, On Point:  Lois Lowry and “Son.”  Plus, we’ll check in J.K. Rowling after Harry Potter.

-Tom Ashbrook


Lois Lowry, author of the new book Son.

From Tom’s Reading List

L.A. Times “In 1993, Lois Lowry published “The Giver,” a young adult novel about a dystopian culture in which conformity is the standard and Sameness is a social goal. By then, Lowry was already a well-known writer for young readers: Her first book, “A Summer to Die,” came out in 1977, and her novel “Number the Stars,” which takes place during the Holocaust, won a 1990 Newbery Medal.”

C-Segment: J. K. Rowling

Lev Grossman, book critic for Time magazine. You can read his review of the latest J.K. Rowling book here.


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Check out the trailer for the book here.

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  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    On the advice of a student, I recently read “The Giver.”  The parallels to Plato’s Republic are obvious, but Plato was using the city as an analogy for the human mind and how we each should organize ourselves.

  • sharlyne1

    This is one of my favorite books on the reading lists in junior high. I still reference this book nearly 15 years later. The Giver was the first novel I read where as a teenager I could relate the theme to every day life. Wonderful read.
    Thank you Ms. Lowry!

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    Spouse in “The Giver” is a meaningless term, since everyone takes a drug to suppress sexual desire.  The relationships aren’t consummated.

  • http://www.facebook.com/tpshields Thomas Pineros Shields

    So nice to hear the voice of one of my family’s favorite authors.  I read The Giver with my older kids years ago, and we loved it…you are making me want to read it again and the follow-up books as well.  Now, my 1st grade daughter LOVES Gooney Bird…and I just read her the Birthday Ball which liked a lot of well.  We are big fans.

  • dale Coykendall

    Beg to differ… I read Gathering Blue with my 6th grade daughter. I didn’t think the writing was strong enough to cover the bleakness . I’ll read some of her others to try and keep an open mind.Thank you

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    Ask Ms. Lowry if Plato’s Republic influenced her writing of “The Giver.”

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    Politically, “The Giver” has a lot in common with the works of Ayn Rand.  The world is controlled, and one hero has to break free from authority to be human.

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    Oh, no, a book might refer to sex?  A book might refer to a father having to kill his son?  Have these control freaks read the Bible?

    • DrewInGeorgia

      Only the important parts. lol

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    There are lots of books that go beyond the separation into children and adult categories.  “Watership Down” is another example.

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    Ms. Lowry, give the Republic a read.  It has many parallels.

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

    I’ve heard that Rowling’s new book costs $35.  How long will it be before a cheaper copy is available?

  • http://www.facebook.com/sdukenski Stephen Dukenski

    JK Rowling has said in a recent interview: “I had a lot of real-world material in me, believe you me. The thing about fantasy — there are certain things you just don’t do in fantasy. You don’t have sex near unicorns. It’s an ironclad rule. It’s tacky.”

    Many adult fantasy authors — Lev Grossman among them — have included sex in their stories without it resorting to tacky, bodice-ripping trash. Would’ve loved to get Grossman’s take on this quote.

    Personally, I don’t believe Rowling understands — or possibly even reads — adult fantasy fiction.

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