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Gathering Blue Hardcover – Bargain Price, September 25, 2012
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Kira, newly orphaned and lame from birth, is taken from the turmoil of the village to live in the grand Council Edifice because of her skill at embroidery. There she is given the task of restoring the historical pictures sewn on the robe worn at the annual Ruin Song Gathering, a solemn day-long performance of the story of their world's past. Down the hall lives Thomas the Carver, a young boy who works on the intricate symbols carved on the Singer's staff, and a tiny girl who is being trained as the next Singer. Over the three artists hovers the menace of authority, seemingly kind but suffocating to their creativity, and the dark secret at the heart of the Ruin Song.
With the help of a cheerful waif called Matt and his little dog, Kira at last finds the way to the plant that will allow her to create the missing color--blue--and, symbolically, to find the courage to shape the future by following her art wherever it may lead. With astonishing originality, Lowry has again created a vivid and unforgettable setting for this thrilling story that raises profound questions about the mystery of art, the importance of memory, and the centrality of love. (Ages 10 and older) --Patty Campbell
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series, and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. Pre-order the official script book today. Kindle | Hardcover
More About the Author
A CONVERSATION WITH LOIS LOWRY ABOUT THE GIVER
Q. When did you know you wanted to become a writer?
A. I cannot remember ever not wanting to be a writer.
Q. What inspired you to write The Giver?
A. Kids always ask what inspired me to write a particular book or how did I get an idea for a particular book, and often it's very easy to answer that because books like the Anastasia books come from a specific thing; some little event triggers an idea. But a book like The Giver is a much more complicated book, and therefore it comes from much more complicated places--and many of them are probably things that I don't even recognize myself anymore, if I ever did. So it's not an easy question to answer.
I will say that the whole concept of memory is one that interests me a great deal. I'm not sure why that is, but I've always been fascinated by the thought of what memory is and what it does and how it works and what we learn from it. And so I think probably that interest of my own and that particular subject was the origin, one of many, of The Giver.
Q. How did you decide what Jonas should take on his journey?
A. Why does Jonas take what he does on his journey? He doesn't have much time when he sets out. He originally plans to make the trip farther along in time, and he plans to prepare for it better. But then, because of circumstances, he has to set out in a very hasty fashion. So what he chooses is out of necessity. He takes food because he needs to survive. He takes the bicycle because he needs to hurry and the bike is faster than legs. And he takes the baby because he is going out to create a future. And babies always represent the future in the same way children represent the future to adults. And so Jonas takes the baby so the baby's life will be saved, but he takes the baby also in order to begin again with a new life.
Q. When you wrote the ending, were you afraid some readers would want more details or did you want to leave the ending open to individual interpretation?
A. Many kids want a more specific ending to The Giver. Some write, or ask me when they see me, to spell it out exactly. And I don't do that. And the reason is because The Giver is many things to many different people. People bring to it their own complicated beliefs and hopes and dreams and fears and all of that. So I don't want to put my own feelings into it, my own beliefs, and ruin that for people who create their own endings in their minds.
Q. Is it an optimistic ending? Does Jonas survive?
A. I will say that I find it an optimistic ending. How could it not be an optimistic ending, a happy ending, when that house is there with its lights on and music is playing? So I'm always kind of surprised and disappointed when some people tell me that they think the boy and the baby just die. I don't think they die. What form their new life takes is something I like people to figure out for themselves. And each person will give it a different ending. I think they're out there somewhere and I think that their life has changed and their life is happy, and I would like to think that's true for the people they left behind as well.
Q. In what way is your book Gathering Blue a companion to The Giver?
A. Gathering Blue postulates a world of the future, as The Giver does. I simply created a different kind of world, one that had regressed instead of leaping forward technologically as the world of The Giver has. It was fascinating to explore the savagery of such a world. I began to feel that maybe it coexisted with Jonas's world . . . and that therefore Jonas could be a part of it in a tangential way. So there is a reference to a boy with light eyes at the end of Gathering Blue. He can be Jonas or not, as you wish.
Top Customer Reviews
"Gathering Blue" has a similar flavor to "The Giver" but not the power. Whereas "The Giver" reminded me of "1984", "Gathering Blue" reminded me of "Planet of the Apes." Now, I'm a fan of "Planet of the Apes", mind you, but it's not the same thing.
Again, in "Gathering Blue", there is the story of an anti-utopian future society. Kira is a girl who has lost both of her parents. The book opens with her mourning her mother. Because of her deformed leg, Kira is now at risk of being killed herself as she can no longer contribute to her society made primitive after an event called the Ruin. Her unequalled skill with a needle and thread, however, keep her alive and get her close enough to the power of her society to see its secret horrors.
"Gathering Blue" is a good story. Certainly better than much of what's out there. What I like about this story even over "The Giver" is that it seems almost more real. While reading, I felt that this kind of primitive society could really develop. What it lacks is the tension and surprises of "The Giver.Read more ›
Now, GATHERING BLUE did not have that impact for me. But it's a very good example of a YA novel with a smart, kind heroine in a world that is complex, often brutish, and all to human. Where the world of THE GIVER, we gradually discover, is technologically advanced but emotionally and psychologically regimented, even soul-destroying, the catastrophes have turned the world of GATHERING BLUE to a fierce hunter-gatherer society.
It's a world where deformed people are routinely abandoned to death at birth, and where children, or "tykes," are redistributed to other families should one parent die, where parenting is full of shouts and slaps (but also, we see in glimpses, some kisses and handholding) and where those who can't contribute or work in an obvious fashion are ruthlessly discarded.
For all that, however, it's a world more familiar to the reader than the world of THE GIVER, and somehow, a friendlier place. Perhaps because family units, however bickering, do exist, or because of the presence of a mischievous child named MATT who even has a pet dog, this world's harshness is less shocking. Everyone in the world is brought up with it, knows about, no secrets there.
There are secrets, however.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
"Take pride in your pain. You are stronger than those who have none."
Gathering Blue is the second installment in The Giver Quartet. Read more
I have always loved to read, but after becoming a mother, working in a very demanding profession that requires extended deployments each year, and working towards my master's... Read morePublished 26 days ago by Shaunabee
Why do I have to do this just to read my next book that I purchased? This is bulls***! I should be able to go to the next book without having to do this!Published 28 days ago
This was a great book that was easy to read and escape for s few hours. I would recommend it to all.Published 28 days ago by Linshameee
I read this one first and found it an intriguing tale. The main character, called "Threader," doesn't understand why she has been chosen to repair the ceremonial robe that... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Sarah the book reviewer
A book that makes you think about society in a real way. It's is powerful, definitely a required read. IPublished 1 month ago by Kyouko