They called her Water Claire. When she washed up on their shore, no one knew that she came from a society where emotions and colors didn’t exist. That she had become a Vessel at age thirteen. That she had carried a Product at age fourteen. That it had been stolen from her body. Claire had a son. But what became of him she never knew. What was his name? Was he even alive? She was supposed to forget him, but that was impossible. Now Claire will stop at nothing to find her child, even if it means making an unimaginable sacrifice. Son thrusts readers once again into the chilling world of the Newbery Medal winning book, The Giver, as well as Gathering Blue and Messenger where a new hero emerges. In this thrilling series finale, the startling and long-awaited conclusion to Lois Lowry’s epic tale culminates in a final clash between good and evil.
Reviewed: 2018-07-18It's hard to review a "series" book without giving away too much. So much takes place that is affected by what you're already read. Suffice to say, if you HAVEN'T read the preceding three books in this series, STOP what you are doing, and read them.
Good. You're back. Excellent. And you've read "The Giver", "Gathering Blue", and "Messenger". Now then. I STILL can't in good faith give away too much of what goes on in this story, because it ties up so many loose ends in this world. More than I can mention, and more than even I realized. But a good summary might go like this: Claire, a birth mother in the same village as Jonas, the central character in the first book, gives birth to her "product" (the baby, her son) and in childbirth is rendered incapable of further child-bearing. As it happens, said child turns out to be a very important recurring character in the previous books, and as Claire's journey to discover--and then FIND--her son reaches from her original home, down a river, then to a settlement on the shores of a great sea, up the side of a cliff, and finally to the village we have previously visited in "Gathering Blue" and "Messenger". Along the way she makes a trade which at the same time points her toward her goal...and make it unlikely she will ever reach it.
It's a fascinating tale and ultimately satisfying, and the only reason I don't give it five stars rather than four is that the denouement is perhaps a bit too abrupt for my liking. But it's Lowry's world, not mine, and I give her all the credit in the world for not only creating it, but for making it so utterly engrossing that I would go through all four books in less than ten days. And I am NOT a speed reader.
I suspect kids from 8 to 18 would eat this stuff up. Even those who blinked their eyes at "Messenger" or wrinkled their noses at "Gathering Blue" (the best of the four, in my estimation) will enjoy it, and likely will quickly search out its predecessors. Which considering their quality, cannot be a bad thing. Parent, please oblige them! And enjoy the books along with them.
In summary: this is a worthy finale to an epic tale, one which deserves its place among classics, childden, adult, and every age in between.
Reviewed: 2017-12-07Initial Ipmressions Upon further reflection, I'm lowing my star rating. 2-2.5 stars. There were SO SO SO many things that upset me in this book, most of all which was Claire's entire story. It felt so unnecessary and I wanted so much more time with Gabe than with Claire.
Full review originally posted HERE on The Book Addict's Guide: SON was... an experience. But overall not a good one for me. I've raved plenty of times how much I've loved THE GIVER ever since I first read it in seventh grade and even re-reading as an adult about two years ago, that opinion still stands. I feel like it opened the doors to dystopians for me (and possibly others, even authors) but I think the doors should have closed after THE GIVER came out. The other three books in the series were not up to par in my personal opinion and SON was probably the worst of them all for me.
SON is the story of Claire, a girl who grew up in the same community in which first met Jonas in THE GIVER. She was chosen to be a birth mother for her profession and right away, I saw where this was going. I can't remember if Claire was ever mentioned in THE GIVER, so maybe this plot had already been set up for me but considering that I can't remember, it stands to reason that there was still quite a bit about her that I didn't know. What I really wasn't sure about was how much of Claire's story I was supposed to be able to infer. Was it supposed to be obvious to me who her connections were and how she tied into this story? Or was this supposed to be a twist or a surprise when we found out exactly how she tied into the book? It was obvious to me from the beginning so I was just unclear whether it was supposed to be a twist or not. (Also omitting what that connection was so I don't spoil it for other people who DON'T know.)
My biggest issue with SON is that it was SLOW. SON is basically broken up into three parts. The first section was my largest concern and the part I struggled with the most. Even listening to the audio at 2x speed didn't help me get through it. We first meet Claire in the Community and the first third of the book seems to parallel the story of THE GIVER except from the point of view of a different and more removed character. It may have been nice to have that refresher of THE GIVER except for the fact that it all felt very slow and anti-climatic.
The second part of the book didn't go much better for me either. It still felt incredibly slow and with one exception, it felt totally unnecessary for the plot. I feel like it was supposed to beautiful and poetic but instead it just felt dull and long for me. I was waiting in anticipation of when Claire's story line would hop back in to the connection with THE GIVER once more, so I was mostly anxious and waiting for this section to be over. There were too many details that were not relevant to the plot at all that I actually skipped over a few, my interest not being held.
The last portion of the book was by far the best. Things finally start to become relevant again and connections are made. YAY! Except... It was just too little too late. The last third of the book switches POVs so we're no longer hearing things surrounding Claire's life (and maybe this was why the last section of the book worked so well for me) and I found myself wishing that the POVs had been reversed with the majority of the book here and the smaller portion focusing on Claire's history.
Overall it was a really rough read for me. If I hadn't been listening to the audio, I think it would have been difficult to finish, but I was also determined to finish this series that I've been more or less reading for over ten years now. Based on the reviews I've seen on Goodreads, the reactions to this book are very mixed so take my review with a grain of salt!
Reviewed: 2017-12-01It's good. Just not as good as The Giver or Finding Blue.
Reviewed: 2017-04-03Loved the first third of it. Then it got a little slow, then it picked up again just in time for me to feel that the ending was really inadequate.
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