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1 Hawthorne Children's Young Adult- General

Gathering Blue


Gathering Blue Cover

ISBN13: 9780385732567
ISBN10: 0385732562
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Author Q & A

Q. When did you know you wanted to become a writer?

A.I can’t remember ever not wanting that.

Q. What was the hardest part about writing this novel? What was the best part?

A.This novel wrote itself pretty easily. It has a linear narrative . . . one thing leads to the next in a fairly straight line . . . and for me that is the easiest kind of story to write.

Q. What was your inspiration for writing Gathering Blue? Did you have any strong influences?

A.I simply hadn’t stopped thinking about the future after I wrote The Giver. There were a lot of unanswered what if s, and for a writer, that means a book begins taking shape. There are still some what nexts in my mind, and I am planning a third book to go with the first two.

Q. What is the significance of the title?

A.Originally I intended to call it The Gathering, which seemed a perfect title (given the fact that there is actually a ceremony called The Gathering in the book) and would make a good companion title to The Giver. But then I discovered that Virginia Hamilton had written a book called The Gathering. It seemed discourteous . . . though it wouldn’t have been illegal . . . to use the same title. So Gathering Blue was a second choice, but I like this title.

Q. In what way is 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.

Q. The starred review in Booklist states: ÒThere is a richness in the characters, too, all of whom are detailed with fine, invisible stitches.Ó Where did you get the ideas for these characters? Are they based on people in your life?

A.All book characters come from people you have known or seen or wondered about. But none of the characters in Gathering Blue are based on individuals. They all draw on characteristics of various people. Even people in books. Kira, in Gathering Blue, for example, could be Meg, from my 1977 book A Summer to Die: a solitary, introspective, creative girl on the brink of adulthood, forced to grapple with tough things, finding her own inner resources. I simply set her down in a different set of circumstances.

Q.You seem to have so much knowledge of threading and the different dyes. How did you do the research for the different ways of threading and dyeing? Do you have some experience with this?

A.I got several books on this subject and did my research that way. I found it quite fascinating, though I didn’t actually try making dyes myself. Later I gave the books to the young girl, Erica, who posed for the cover photo, because she thought she might like to try it.

Q. Why does Kira decide to stay in the village to continue her threading for the Singer’s Robe? Did you ever consider having her leave?

A.It seemed important to me that Kira play a role in shaping a peaceful future for the world. Running away from what needed change wouldn’t have given her that opportunity. It could be argued that Jonas did that . . . ran away. I don’t think so, though. I think he fled in order to bring about change. Kira stays for the same reason.

Q. Do you have a favorite character from Gathering Blue? Who and why?

A.I’m very fond of Matt and will probably bring him back in a third book that completes the trilogy. For all his foolishness, he has a great heart and a lot of courage, I think. And he’s still young. I would like to see what Matt becomes when he gets older.

Q. Compare this future society you have created with our present-day society. Do you see any similarities or differences?

A.Self-interest is, sadly, part of our lives today. Political leaders put their own goals ahead of the good of the people. Wealth amassed by a few, while the masses live in poverty . . . you can see that in many places. Subjugation of women, and brutality toward the weak: think of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.

Yet always there are those . . . like Kira . . . who emerge as potential leaders, with a gift for peace and a spirit of benevolence. Those are the people we must watch for and nurture and support. The blue that she holds in her hands at the end of the book is simply a symbol. The blue to be gathered can take many different forms in today’s world.

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

emmejo, July 4, 2010 (view all comments by emmejo)
In Kira's village, anyone who can't work due to a birth defect or injury is killed. Kira was born with a twisted leg, and her mother fought and won permission to allow her to live. With her mother's death it seems Kira might be killed after all, unless she can prove to the Council of Guardians that the skills she does have are worth enough to offset those she lacks.

This interesting novel is very hard to put down! It definitely makes you think a lot about how much it makes sense for a community to try and support those who can't help themselves, and how seemingly less than useful talents sometimes need to be looked at in a different light.

The characters are very real and I admit, I got rather attached to some of them. The plot is slow-moving, but steady and interesting enough to keep your attention. The ending felt very abrupt and rushed, which was very disappointing considering the high-quality of the rest.
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Michael Taylor, February 17, 2007 (view all comments by Michael Taylor)
The Messenger, Gathering Blue and The Giver can be read in any order and each stands on its own merits but those who enjoy any individual title will want to read all three because the stories are beautifully interwoven. Lowry still needs to resolve some of the story lines and things brought up in this continuing tale and so look forward to reading additional books about these characters, their very believable communities and world they live in.
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Product Details

Lowry, Lois
HMH Books for Young Readers
Lowry, Lois
Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Magic
Science fiction
Family - Orphans & Foster Homes
Children's 12-Up - Fiction - Science Fiction
Social Issues - Special Needs
Fantasy & Magic
People with disabilities
Situations / General
Children s-Science Fiction and Fantasy
Lois Lowry;dystopian;female narrator;disabilities;sewing;art;storytelling;escape
Edition Description:
Giver Quartet
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
from 7
8.25 x 5.5 in 0.55 lb
Age Level:
from 12

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Related Subjects

Children's » General
Children's » Science Fiction and Fantasy » General
Fiction and Poetry » Science Fiction and Fantasy » A to Z
Young Adult » Fiction » Social Issues » Special Needs
Young Adult » General

Gathering Blue Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$6.95 In Stock
Product details 256 pages Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers - English 9780385732567 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
The second book in Lois Lowry's Giver Quartet tells the story of Kira, orphaned, physically flawed, and left with an uncertain future.
"Synopsis" by ,
Lois Lowry won her first Newbery Medal in 1994 for The Giver. Six years later, she ushered readers back into its mysterious but plausible future world in Gathering Blue to tell the story of Kira, orphaned, physically flawed, and left with an uncertain future. This second book in the Giver Quartet has been stunningly redesigned in paperback. As she did in The Giver and later Messenger, in Gathering Blue Lois Lowry challenges readers to imagine what our world could become, how people could evolve, and what could be considered valuable.
"Synopsis" by , Lois Lowry’s Gathering Blue continues the quartet beginning with the quintessential dystopian novel, The Giver, followed by Messenger and Son.

Kira, an orphan with a twisted leg, lives in a world where the weak are cast aside. When she is given a task that no other community member can carry out, Kira soon realizes that she is surrounded by many mysteries and secrets. No one must know of her plans to uncover the truth about her world—and to find out what exists beyond it.

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