"It was almost December, and Jonas was beginning to be frightened."
Thus opens this haunting novel in which a boy inhabits a seemingly ideal world: a world without conflict, poverty, unemployment, divorce, injustice, or inequality. It is a time in which family values are paramount, teenage rebellion is unheard of, and even good manners are a way of life.
December is the time of the annual Ceremony at which each twelve year old receives a life assignment determined by the Elders. Jonas watches his friend Fiona named Caretaker of the Old and his cheerful pal Asher labeled the Assistant Director of Recreation. But Jonas has been chosen for something special. When his selection leads him to an unnamed man -- the man called only the Giver -- he begins to sense the dark secrets that underlie the fragile perfection of his world.
Told with deceptive simplicity, this is the provocative story of a boy who experiences something incredible and undertakes something impossible. In the telling, it questions every value we have taken for granted and reexamines our most deeply held beliefs.
Written by Lois Lowry, adapted for the stage by Eric Coble, and produced by Steve Brown and Mike Ullstrup in 2008 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
About Lois Lowry, Novelist
Lois Lowry is a preeminent voice in contemporary children’s literature, with a canon of more than thirty books for readers of all ages, including the Newbery Medal recipients “Number the Stars” and “The Giver.” Beloved by legions of adults and children, “The Giver” celebrated its fifteenth anniversary in 2008. Known for her versatility and invention as a writer, Lowry was born in Hawaii and grew up in New York, Pennsylvania, and Japan. She has received countless honors, among them the Boston Globe “Horn Book Award,” the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award, the California Young Reader Medal, and the Mark Twain Award. She also received the Margaret A. Edwards Award which honors an author for her lifetime contribution to young adult literature.
About Eric Coble, Playwright
Eric Coble was born in Edinburgh, Scotland and raised on the Navajo and Ute reservations in New Mexico and Colorado. His plays have been produced off- and off-off-Broadway and throughout the United States and Canada including productions at the Kennedy Center, Manhattan Class Company, Actors Studio, and Playwrights Horizons. Awards include the AT&T Onstage Award, National Theater Conference Playwriting Award, and an NEA Playwright in Residence Grant. Besides “The Giver,” Coble’s other stage plays include “Nightfall with Edgar Allan Poe,” Natural Selection,” “Truth: The Testimonial of Sojourner Truth,” “Sacagawea,” and “Gold in the Bones.”