The Hunger Games

24 March 2011

hunger-games

{image via babble.com}

It seems like everyone is talking about these books.  Suzanne Collins wrote a young adult, dystopian {if Utopia is the ultimate in good, dystopian is the ultimate worst possible scenario… I’m telling you this because I have a huge vocabulary and I had never heard this word before, I am not sure how that is possible, but it’s true} trilogy about North America in the future.  The continent is divided into a ruling city called The Capitol and twelve ‘districts’ labeled 1-12.  The first book in the series is The Hunger Games.  It’s a story about a 16 year old girl named Katniss who takes her sister’s place in the annual Hunger Games, a televised set of games where two children from each district, one boy and one girl age 12 – 18 fight to the death.

What did you just say?

Yes, 24 children fight to the death in an outdoor arena until only ONE remains and the entire continent is required by law to watch.  It’s just another way The Capitol keeps control over the twelve districts, you know aside from basically starving them, making them live in abject poverty, and under soul crushing conditions.

When I read the synopsis in Target, I *almost* put the book back on the shelf.  I felt completely disturbed and sick to my stomach at the thought.  I couldn’t believe anyone would recommend something so totally heinous.  Why are all these people talking about this?  Why would anyone read something like this?  I decided to purchase it, read it with the full intention of hating the book, and figure out what the big deal was. 

This is not my kind of book.  At all. 

But I didn’t hate it.  I liked it, though I am still a bit horrified to admit that. 

I am not sure how Suzanne Collins did it, but somehow, someway you look beyond the sickening, awful Games.  You become invested in this girl.  Her story, her courage, and the supporting characters suck you into that world without dwelling on the stomach churning concept of what is actually happening.  It isn’t like you are numb either, you care about these characters.  The plot moves quickly from the lottery how the ‘tributes’ are chosen, to the training, to the actual games which comprise most of the story, to the aftermath of the Games.  There is just something that makes you think every step of the way.

I’m starting the second book, Catching Fire, today.

Have you read The Hunger Games?  Are you going to read it?

17 comments:

Misc Momma said...

Hahahaha. I think *maybe* I suggested this book to you (I'm sure others did too). Yes, it highly disturbed me too. Alas, I loved them all. After finishing this series, I felt I needed a new one to suck me in, so I read The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo trilogy. Also fairly disturbing, but in a different way. I watched the movies and felt like they should've been rated nc17 or worse!

Michelle said...

You WERE one of the suggesters!

Jennifer said...

Love this series of books. We read for my book club. Two of my kids have read it and we have had some great discussions. Have fun reading the rest!

Amanda said...

I have not read them. YET.

BUT I am currently reading The Unit, which is about a dystopian society and I recently finished Matched, which is similar in that they think they are doing society a great honor for controlling them. Great books though!

Furry Bottoms said...

Yes, I read the whole series. It was good, and it really touched some sensitive spots... like big brother kind of stuff.

Mommy Lisa said...

Wow - not sure. You and another friend reviewed today. http://www.cathyhasantsypants.com/2011/03/book-review-hunger-games-trilogy.html

Cathy said...

Hey! Mommy Lisa sent me your way. I just reviewed the series. I was skeptical at first too....what with the children killing children part, but was totally sucked in. And it's true, you really do care about the characters. I do have a spoiler at the end of my review that you should NOT read! Seriously, I don't want to ruin the ending for you.

~*Jess*~ said...

Interesting...and the series is on my list.

Lindsay @SillyMomThoughts said...

I LOVED the whole trilogy! My husband and I read the whole trilogy together. We were bummed when it ended. It definitely filled the void that Harry Potter left us with, when the series was finished. ;)

Jennifer said...

When I was told to read this I told my friend she was OUT OF HER MIND! But my husband was doing some super secret squirrel stuff out in the woods and I was really bored without him....

OB-SESSED! I loved it =) haha! so unexpected! Though I only read the first one... I'm not so hooked that I want to keep reading. I think? hehe

xoXOxo
Jenn @ Peas & Crayons

Emily said...

I still dunno...I might have to borrow the first one from you and at least give it a shot.

Stacy Kaye said...

Wow...I don't think I could! I always have a hard time reading books where bad things are happening to kids...The Lovely Bones was VERY hard.

dining table said...

I am so impressed with this book! Thumbs up. So full of mystery and adventure.

Two Normal Moms said...

Have to admit, I'd never heard of them until now. I'm both repelled and curious. Interesting to hear such good reviews from something you feel will be horrific!

lo said...

I knew I loved you- I am going to pick up #3 from the library today! The first one gave me heart palpitations and anxiety attacks the whole way through but I could NOT put it down. The second one is kind of sleepier but still good. I am madly in love with this series though.

SnoopyMeg said...

Michelle, I have not read this book but a "lighter" version of this type of storyline is one of my FAVORITES "The Handmaids Tale", total classic, read it in high school and have read it every couple years since. Highly recommended!

Sonya said...

I have read all of them and I LOVED them! You are right in that they seem absolutely horrifying! I've read several young adult novels that have very similar themes! I read them all (Hunger Games trilogy, Unwind & Little Brother) in such a short amount of time that I started to wonder what these authors were trying to say! I do think they speak a lot to what society could be like if certain things happened. I do know that they make you think.

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