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Lois Lowry        

Newbery Medal-Winning Author of "Number the Stars" and "The Giver"

From the time Lois Lowry was eight or nine, she knew she wanted to be a writer. Writing was what she liked best in school; it was what she did best in school.

Lowry says she was a solitary child, born the middle of three, who lived in the world of books and her own imagination. There are some children, and she was this kind of child, who are introverts and love to read — who prefer to curl up with a book than to hang out with friends or play at the ball field. Children like that begin to develop a feeling for language and for story. And that was true for Lowry — that's how she became a writer.

Her books have varied in content and in style. Yet all of them deal, essentially, with the same general theme: the importance of human connections. "A Summer to Die," Lowry's first book, is a fictionalized retelling of the early death of her sister, and of the effect of such a loss on a family. "Number the Stars," set in a different culture and era, tells of the same things: the role that we humans play in the lives of our fellow beings.

"The Giver" takes place against the background of yet another very different culture and time. Though broader in scope than her earlier books, it nonetheless speaks to the same concern: the vital need for humans to be aware of their interdependence, not only with each other, but with the world and its environment.

She uses the Anastasia books to make herself laugh and to lighten up between serious books. But Lowry also uses them to deal with serious topics in a different way, disguised by humor.

She says she thinks it is her own children, all of them grown now, who caused her to expand her view. One of Lowry's sons was a fighter pilot in the United States Air Force; as a mother during the Gulf War, she was newly stunned into fear for the world and a heightened awareness of the necessity to find a way to end conflict. One of her daughters has become disabled as a result of the disease of the central nervous system; through her, Lowry has a new and passionate awareness of the importance of human connections that transcend physical differences.

And she has grandchildren now. For them, she feels a greater urgency to do what she can to convey the knowledge that we live intertwined on this planet and that our future as human beings depends upon our caring more, and doing more, for one another.


Zooman Sam
Crow Call
The Giver


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