There is no hunger. There is no war. There is no fear. And there is no freedom. Everything is under control, and every child is watched and then assigned their role in the community when they are 12-years-old. However, when Jonas turns 12, he is selected to become the next Receiver, a mysterious title that no one understands. He will receive his training from the Giver, a man that lives isolated from the community. From the Giver, Jonas will receive memories of pain, hunger, fear and true pleasure. As Jonas receives his training, he must decide whether it is better to leave things as they are or to be free.
Given his lifetime assignment at the Ceremony of Twelve, Jonas becomes the receiver of memories shared by only one other in his community and discovers the terrible truth about the society in which he lives.