Here's a brief summary: Meet Jonas, an eleven-year-old boy who lives in a rigidly controlled society some time in the future. In his "community," there is no suffering, hunger, war, and, as you will soon see, no color, sex, music, or love. Everything is controlled by "the Elders," right down to who you will marry, who you receive as children, and what you will be "assigned" as a job. Individual identity has gone the way of cassette tapes, and everyone is essentially just like everyone else. It seems that no one has really left the area, except to visit other neighboring communities. To get "released" is a big deal. It only happens to sick infants or really old people, or to people who break the rules. In short…this world is a lame place to hang out. OK, so now that Jonas has been selected to be Receiver, he gets a list of rules. They tell him that he isn't allowed to discuss his Receiver "training" with anyone, that he's allowed to lie (!), and that he can ask anyone any questions he wants, even if it's rude. Nice. And then Jonas starts his training, which consists of receiving a series of memories from the old Receiver, who is now referred to as The Giver. These aren't just any old personal memories; rather, the old man is passing on to Jonas all the memories of humanity, going way back. The memories are from before their community was established, back when there was color and sex and love and music and emotions and hills and snow and sunshine, all of which are notably absent from Jonas's world. Needless to say, this completely changes the way Jonas looks at his world. He realizes that no one around him has ever felt any real emotions at all.