Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Book Review: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
The Hunger Games and its sequel, Catching Fire, are all over the book blogs. Book bloggers are praise these books and the books have gotten great reviews. I had never heard of Suzanne Collins or these books but after following the book reviews I decided I also have to give a try to these books. I was really suprised that the local library had an English copy of the Hunger Games. I loaned it and read it in two days... it was as good as all the reviews promised.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen lives in the District 12. District 12 is one of the districts of the nation called Panem which lies on the ruins of North America. Capitol is the place which rules all these districts, the glorious center of the Panem. The Capitol is cruel and rules the districts harshy by forcing them to send one boy and one girl between the ages 12 and 18 to participate in the annual Hunger Games. Hunger Games is a reality TV show where the kids are sent to an game area. The only way they can win is to kill others. There is only one winner-- the fighter who stays alive.
Katniss lives with her mother and younger sister Prim. After her father's death she has been the one taking care of the family. She hunts and gathers food and makes sure everything is going well. When the whole population of district 12 gathers to hear the names of the new Hunger Games fighters, Katniss has to make a decision which will chance her life completely. When her sister's name is called she takes Prim's place at the games and becomes the female tribute of the District Twelve. The fact that the male tribute, Peeta, is a guy who helped her a long time ago, does not help her at all. She knows that eventually she might have to kill him.
Without really meaning to, Katniss becomes the favorite of the public. But if she is really to win she has to start to make decisions that weight survival against humanity and life against love.
The whole book is filled with tension and excitement. You just have to keep reading-- putting down the book is extremely hard. The Hunger Games has all the elements of a great book: likeable heroine, great plot, good and bad guys, some love, action, adventure and a conclusion which makes you think... and want to read the second book, Catching Fire.
As I recently read 'Fight Club' by Chuch Palahniuk I must say that I someway see The Hunger Games as a 'teenage edition of the Fight Club'. The books inself don't have that much in common but the fighting theme is the same. I read from somewhere that there is going to be a movie about this book. I am really curious to see how they do it, because the book is really violent but also meant for young adults. So obviously the movie cannot be rated R. It is interesting to see how they will bring all the violence of the book for the eyes of the teenagers.