Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Messenger by Lois Lowry (2004, 192 pgs.)

This is another simple but powerful novel from Lois Lowry that answers some questions that arise in The Giver and Gathering Blue, only to be replaced by new questions and things to think about. We find out where Jonas ends up after escaping his community, and what Matty's new village, that celebrates people's "handicaps", is all about. Matty, being the only one who can safely travel through the treacherous forest, serves as the village's "messenger", and hopes to have that name bestowed on him when the traditional time comes. The community begins to deteriorate, however, and selfishness spreads, causing the members to want to close its borders to any newcomers, despite their needs. Matty goes to get Kira, his guardian's daughter, from another community(the harsh world of Gathering Blue), before it's too late and the borders are closed to her. Their trip through the forest is perilous, and Kira, Matty and Leader (Jonas) must all use their gifts to save themselves and the community.
I love the way Lowry makes her readers reflect on society, and think about the direction current trends may be taking. Also powerful are the common themes throughout all three of the companion novels: acceptance, honesty, compassion, the power of nature and art, and the necessity of choices, and probably a few more that I've missed.


  1. Thank you for the comments on my reviews!

    The Trade Mart was one of my favourite parts of Messenger. Very frightening and definitely worth thinking about. However, just like a couple of other things in the book, I don't think it was explained enough. Sometimes I don't mind when everything isn't made absolutely crystal clear, but I felt that the description of the whole process left a little to be desired. I wanted to know more exactly how it worked, but I suppose one can't get all one wants!

  2. Love,
    I also would have liked more details about the trademaster. I felt like more information was coming, but then it never did. Maybe another book!

  3. I wasn't much tempted to read more Lowry after The Giver, but this one does sound good.

  4. what does jonas look like in the giver and how did you use good adjectives to describe jonas

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