Contents for The Hunger Games Reviews
- The Hunger Games Review
- Catching Fire and Mockingjay Review
Pressured by the all-round praise for this book, I took it upon myself to read it to see what everyone was going on about, and it turns out I finished it (454 pg.) in half a day. So now, without further ado, here is my review;
The Hunger Games, written by Suzanne Collins, is both the title of the book as well as the name of the series which encompasses three novels in total,The Hunger Games, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay. The Hunger Games (book) tells the story of Katniss Everdeen, in a futuristic world. In this world, there is the main city where everyone with power and money resides, called the Capitol, and branching out around this city are the 12 Districts, each one specialising in a resource, for example fishing, agriculture, electronics etc., each resource given to Capitol, leaving the districts very poor. Following a revolution quite some time ago, a sort of punishment called the Hunger Games happens every year. Each year, one girl and one boy from each district is chosen at random, and all 24 children must compete to the death, the only rule: kill or be killed, while the whole thing is televised. The story starts when Katniss, from district 12 (specialising in coal mining), volunteers to enter the Hunger Games in place of her younger sister. Happy Hunger Games, and may the odds be ever in your favour.
I understand why this book is liked everywhere. It has everything, the fuzzy love-triangle, the action, the deaths, the subtle political themes, and even from time to time the humour. Written in first person from Katniss' perspective, I do sometimes find her overly hot-headed and unable to handle some situations, but a perfect heroine makes for a boring story. The writing style is not very common, consisting mainly of short simple sentences, reflecting the way Katniss would actually think in her mind. There are very little details, that is, most of the environments and what they look like are completely left up to the reader. For example, the Capitol has a seal that is constantly shown during the Games, but no description of it is ever given, only that it is a seal. The writing style is also divided into conversations, Katniss' feelings, her inner monologues, but there are also long paragraphs from time to time that seem to be written for the sole purpose of explaining a particular aspect of the future. Since the book is written in first person present, it is not some sort of diary, but a live account of the events, so to speak, and so, the explanatory paragraphs seem to be written by the author herself instead of Katniss explaining it to the reader. It may sound strange as I am explaining the writing style, but it all fits and reads perfectly.
In a nut shell, I really like this book, and although the story has a few discrepancies, and leaves you wondering a few things, I can understand why everyone is crazy over this book. Even other already successful authors have acclaimed it. Among them, Stephen King and Anthony Horowitz (author of the Alex Rider series, which I love!!). Stephen King, in a very funny review, explained what was good with it and what wasn't. He gave The Hunger Games an overall B grade. His most prominent problems with the novel are the standard love-triangle and Katniss Everdeen's name, as well as the fact that the fight-for-life-while-everything-is-televised idea isn't exactly news. Most people will immediately think of Battle Royal, which shares the theme of random selection for the contestants, weapons given in the 'arena', as well as the theme that involves punishing people for previous revolutions/bad behaviour (in Battle Royal, teenagers against adults, while in Hunger Games, districts against the Capitol).
Even if the novel has striking similarities to other works, it doesn't change the fact that it is an enjoyable read and it is almost impossible to set down. I definitely recommend it.