Quotes

Quotes from The Giver with page numbers

The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It’s the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared. (Page 4)

There’s much more. There’s all that goes beyond – all … that is Elsewhere – and all that goes back, and back, and back. I received all of those, when I was selected. And here in this room, all alone, I re-experience them again and again. It is how wisdom comes. And how we shape our future. (Page 21)

It’s the choosing that’s important, isn’t it? (Page 44)

I liked the feeling of love, [Jonas] confessed. He glanced nervously at the speaker on the wall, reassuring himself that no one was listening. I wish we still had that, he whispered. Of course, [The Giver] said, You and I have experienced that. But you, Jonas, would be faced with that same question – what about the memories? (Page 62)

The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It’s the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared. (Page 77)

I feel sorry for anyone who is in a place where he feels strange and stupid. (Page 79)

I can’t imagine it. And now … you can’t, either. (Page 100)

Life … is a very fragile thing. (Page 108)

The whole community should get the memories. They need to understand. (Page 134)

I don’t know what it is, but you don’t seem nearly as upset today as you did before. Oh, I’m still upset. I’m just not expressing it. (Page 137)

You’re beginning to see the color red, aren’t you? (Page 150)

Our people made that choice, the choice to go to Sameness. Before my time, before the previous time, back and back and back. We relinquished color when we relinquished sunshine and did away with difference. (Page 154)

If everything’s the same, then there aren’t any choices. (Page 156)

Jonas did not want to hurt Gabriel. He wanted to hug him and kiss him. And protect him. But he had no concept anymore of how to do that. (Page 170)

I must suggest that you take into consideration the fact that here in the community, independent thought is not highly valued. (Page 174)

It is what it is. We can’t change it. (Page 188)

I want to wake up in the morning and decide things! (Page 204)

I have a suggestion: I think that when your children are grown, maybe in their twenties, and you’re still feeling that they’re watching you, spying on you, criticizing you … do it back to them. It’s what they need. It’s an antidote. (Page 211)

We really have to protect people from wrong choices. (Page 226)

Thank you for [the memory] – and for everything else. (Page 229)

I’m not sure exactly where they came from. Perhaps … from dreams. (Page 233)

I think that when people are useful, they are less likely to be destructive. (Page 247)

Maybe it was the lies that mattered. If things were kept hidden, perhaps they were more dangerous. (Page 260)

You and I, we’re the same. We’re both on the same side now. (Page 273)

I wanted to care about the whole world because of him. I wanted to love the world, to heal it, to make it a better place. (Page 280)

His mind reeled. Now, empowered to ask questions of utmost rudeness – and promised answers – he could, conceivably (though it was almost unimaginable), ask someone, some adult, his mother perhaps: ‘Do you lie?’ (Page 286)

I suppose Jonas will be back when he becomes a Twelve. Hope he has a good time working out what he’s going to be. (Page 291)

The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It’s the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared. (Page 302)

But we’re in the same family. We’re the same age. We’ve been given the same experiences. We should be happy; we should be the same. (Page 319)

It’s the choosing that’s important, isn’t it? (Page 335)

Do you love me now? Jonas asked. Jonas. The old man sighed. You of all people. Precision of language, please! What do you mean? Jonas asked. Amusement was not at all what he had anticipated. Your father means that you used a very generalized word, so meaningless that it’s become almost obsolete, his mother explained carefully. (Page 352)

I do understand some things now that I didn’t understand before. But only a very little bit. Old people have a lot of knowledge, but it’s all about things that happened in the past. (Page 362)

You’re right, of course, The Giver said, and just for a moment he sounded tired. Forgive me. It’s only that I’m so used to seeing the world in a certain way. Everyone in our community sees it that way. Only I have the memories to see beyond. And I will be like them, a Receiver. (Page 371)

The life where nothing was ever unexpected. Or inconvenient. Or unusual. The life without color, pain, or past. (Page 381)

You and I are friends. That means we have to trust each other. (Page 396)

I should have saved her! I should have saved them both. I should have died with you! (Page 403)

If you were to be lost in the river, Jonas, your memories would not be lost with you. Memories are forever. (Page 409)

His new, painful knowing of the things that he already knew became agony. (Page 421)

There was nothing, just nothing, to hold on to. He felt his body descending slowly toward the huge welcoming black hole in the center of the starry sky. (Page 437)

It’s a lot to ask of a community, but I can think of no other way you could come to know what it is like to be truly human. (Page 443)

But maybe it was only an echo. (Page 447)

But I am the Receiver. And the goal of the Receiver is to be free, to have any colors he wants. To use his eyes. (Page 456)

Things could change, Gabe. Things could be different. I don’t know how, but there must be some way for things to be different. There could be colors. (Page 468)

I think I’ve started something. And I don’t think I can stop it. (Page 480)

It’s a dangerous job. It always has been. That’s why the former Receiver failed, and why it is a new position. It’s too much to ask a single individual. And that’s why the rules say that if there’s ever a new Receiver, the old one is released. (Page 487)

Memories were an invitation to the did not exist yet. To go or stay. To trust. To know the flesh you leave behind. To kiss a friend’s cheek. (Page 496)

His face redened. ‘What?’ Jonas asked. ‘No. Rosemary had only one training… yet she gave up. She applied for Release. It was her own decision.’ ‘Where is she? Can’t we find her? Can’t we bring her back here?’ The real words had spilled out, barely formed in his mind. It was not possible to retrieve a failed Receiver. (Page 514)

Jonas felt a ripping sensation inside himself, the feeling of terrible pain clawing its way forward to emerge in a cry. (Page 523)

His thoughts continued. People could not know what we know, or see the things that we see, Jonas thought. (Page 531)

We were just about to close up for the day, Gabriel. We’re going to be all right now. (Page 528)

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