The Hunger Games
By Suzanne Collins
Here’s the blurb from the publisher:
In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before-and survival.
The Short of It:
Well paced. Very readable. Vivid characters. Vaguely familiar.
The Rest of It:
This is where I become unpopular.
After hearing all of the hype over this book, I expected great things, but what I got was good, but not great. I know, the planet has come to a grinding halt and birds have stopped singing everywhere!! Here’s the deal, I am a 40-something female and I watched a lot of movies in my youth, but as I was reading, I couldn’t help but compare this book to The Running Man and Logan’s Run. I’m not saying that The Hunger Games is exactly like these two movies, but the whole game show aspect…THAT, that to me was very similar. In the case of Logan’s Run, age is a factor too. Much like in The Hunger Games. Hasn’t anyone else noticed the similarities? If not, watch the movies and get back to me. Actually, The Running Man was a story by Richard Bachman (Stephen King) which was later made into a movie.
Did I enjoy the book? I did. I liked Katniss a lot. It was nice to see a young girl, with a good head on her shoulders. One who is a bit insecure yet quite capable at the same time. I thought some of the other characters were quite memorable as well. Who wouldn’t love Rue? Oh, and Haymitch was quite interesting. Funny at times, but serious when he had to be. I’m not quite sure how I feel about Peeta and his affection for Katniss though.
I can see why this book appeals to all different age groups even though it’s geared towards the young adult set. I am looking forward to the next book in the series, Catching Fire which came out this past September. The university that I work for was considering The Hunger Games for their Freshman Common Reading book for 2010, but they decided to go with The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. I missed the meeting though so I can’t tell you why!