Jonas, the main character, lives in a community where there is no pain or emotion. Jonas' father works at the community's nurturing center. One year after a new child’s birth they must pass certain requirements tolive in the community. There is on child that does not pass all of these reuriments because he does not sleep soundly at night. Jonas starts to get attached to this newborn and likes taking care of it. At the annual Ceremony of Twelve Jonas is the only person who is singled out and chosen to be the next Receiver of Memory, because they see great faith in him. To be the Receiver, Jonas must receive all of the memories that have happened in the past. whil in his training Jonas learns of war, pain, death, and loneliness, these are all things he has never heard of. Jonas goes to training the next day and asks the Receiver of Memory about release. The Receiver then shows Jonas a video of Jonas’ father releasing a newborn child. Jonas recognizes the look of the kid's face from his memories. The Receiver and Jonas are both in disagreement with the way the community is running and come up with a plan to escape and help the community forever. Their plan goes to waste when that same night Jonas hears that the new child being taken care of by there family is soon to be released. Jonas runs away from the community, taking the baby with him. After using all of his memories to get through the horrible weather and nights through all the different connunities. He survives the hard and miserable night and he olny cared about the nweborn when there were hard times.