Book Review Son | Hamro Patro

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Book Review: Son

   Aayusi Shrestha - Oct 21 2022

Son is a young adult fiction novel written by a well-known American novelist, Lois Lowry. This novel was initially published on October 2, 2012. Son is the fourth book in Lois Lowry's ‘The Giver Quartet’. Son follows the journey of Claire, a young girl who is trying to find her son, who has been taken away from her. This novel has been divided into three parts: Book I, Book II, and Book III. The events in all three books take place over a fifteen-year span in different places.

The novel is written from a third person point of view. The reader can follow Claire's journey of finding her son. Claire struggles a lot while she tries to find her son. While looking for her child, Claire encounters a lot of difficulty. She experiences a range of emotions as well. To be honest I am not really a fan of Lois Lowry’s writing style and also I did not really like the previous book “Messenger”.

At the age of twelve, Claire, the protagonist of this book, is chosen to give birth to a child. She lives in a dystopian community where a role is assigned to everyone and Claire has been assigned the role of a birthmother. She had been sent to a dorm where other birthmothers known as “vessels” were kept. She gave birth at the age of 14, but due to complications she had given birth by surgery. After she has given birth, she holds her child, known as “product” but her child is soon taken away from her. She is also decertified as a birthmother due to the complications of her delivery. After giving birth in a few weeks she starts working in the fish hatchery as she was assigned there. In the nurturing center, she asks an officer about her child and knows that he is called thirty six and a boy. She wants to spend time with her and asks the officer if she could help. Claire and thirty six start getting closer but one day Claire gets to know that her son is being sent to another family as he does not really meet the community's standards. After that the journey to find her son begins.

The main theme of this book is relationships. The relationship of Claire and Gabriel was the relationship of a mother and son. The reason why Claire was so obsessed with finding Gabriel was because he was her son. In the village where Claire lives people are assigned a role which they have to fulfill. The relationships in the village were like functions and responsibilities rather than true relationships. Since every person in the community was forced to take pills to suppress their feelings, there was a lack of emotion and ties in their relationships. Connecting this with reality, many people think of relationships as responsibilities and try to fulfill it. The other theme of this book is determination. In the entire book we can see that most of the characters are determined to do something. Taking an example of Claire, there were many possibilities that she would not be able to find Gabriel but she kept on being determined. When she was climbing a cliff she was stabbed by something but she kept on going and did not give up at all. She almost died several times but never stopped. Also, when Gabriel was building a boat though he had been humiliated and tempted many times he kept on making the boat with all his determination. In real life as well there are many temptations but if we really want to do something then we do not give up and we stay determined until the very end. Likewise, success is also a theme in this book. Even though Claire went through a lot in the end she succeeded in finding her son. Love and sacrifice was another theme of this novel. After Claire gives birth she gets attached to her son and once he gets taken away she does everything to find him. She even trades and sacrifices her younger self for her son. The love she has for her son makes her sacrifice a lot. In reality as well we sacrifice a lot for our loved ones.

This novel is quite long compared to “messenger” since it has been divided into three parts, thus I would recommend it to individuals who enjoy reading longer books. Not gonna lie this book gives me mixed feelings. I love some parts but I do hate some. I enjoyed the first half of the book, especially when Claire did not give up and tried her best to find her son, Gabriel. While reading this book I realized that there are a lot of mothers like Claire who have to give up their children due to some reasons but most of them can not fight for their children. When I read messenger I was wondering what happened to the trademaster and wanted him to suffer but I was quite disappointed when Gabe fought against the Tradesmaster. It felt a little too easy, and I wanted more of a past for Tradesmaster. I wanted to know why he had become this way. After all, he was the reason that the world in the book was so messed up and also the reason why there's no color in Jonas' original community.

The fact that the side characters are actually from the author's past writings is what I liked best about this book. Kira is the protagonist of the novel "Gathering Blue." Jonas, the main character of "The Giver", is the leader. Seer is the father of Kira and also had been living with Matty who is the main character of “Messenger”.

I would not recommend this book to those who do not enjoy fiction. I'm also not a huge fan of dystopian literature. Also I would not like to recommend this book to slow readers who give up easily because the beginning is slow. There were a few aspects of this novel that I did not enjoy but I still enjoyed this book. Overall this book was pretty good. If I had to rate this book, I'd say it's a 7.5 out of 10. It was definitely better than Messenger and I loved Book I and Book II. This book was quite entertaining to read.

Aayusi Shrestha
Grade: IX Nilgiri
Roll no: 26002

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