Tuesday, January 27, 2009
"Gathering Blue," a companion, not a sequel, to "The Giver", by Lois Lowry, is another dystopian society, but unlike "The Giver," this society has reverted rather than moved ahead technologically.
Kira is a young girl living in a society where brute force, anger and yells are the norm. The huts are minimalistic, the world is dirty and you're only valuable if you're healthy and can contribute. Kira was born with a bad leg, but her mother fought fiercely to keep her. Now, at the age of about 12-13, she has lost her mother to illness and fears she will be cast out to the Field, to be killed by the "beasts" who live there. But Kira has a gift; she is a talented weaver. Her fingers are almost magic. The Council of Guardians recognizes this gift and brings her in to live in their building, one of the few buildings that survived from "before."
The story tells of her works with her weaving, her learning, and her friends with very special talents as well, housed in the same building. She learns to make colors for her threads, but cannot figure out how to make blue. She begins to learn about the past, she questions her and her friends' freedom, and starts to discover what is really out in that Field, including the very special inhabitant that helps her "gather blue."
It's a nice Young Adult quick read.