Why is theme important to a story?

Question:Im in 8th grade and i have to write an essay comparing the common theme of sacrifice in both "the outsiders" and "the giver". Im on the second to last paragraph and i need to explain the importance of theme to the story. I could use some help!!

The theme is - the idea the author wants you to walk away with. Mainly the whole point of the book(s) ( hope it helps)!~!~!
A theme is a broad idea in a story, or a message or lesson conveyed by a work. This message is usually about life, society or human nature. Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. Themes are usually implied rather than explicitly stated. Themes arise from the interplay of the plot, the characters, and the attitude the author takes to them, and the same story can be given very different themes in the hands of different authors.

Themes of the Outsiders: Bridging the gap between rich and poor; honor among the lawless; the treacherousness of male-female interactions

Themes of The Giver: The importance of memory; the relationship between pain and pleasure; the importance of the individual

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