Between the Covers: Stories from My Bookcase

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

I first heard of The Hunger Games trilogy when book 3, Mockingjay, was released in 2010. At the time I thought it was interesting, but I had so many books gathering dust (unread!) already I didn’t want to buy new ones. So I waited until Saturday to get the first book. Almost two years to wait.
I bought it, brought it home, slept on it. Went to work, read some of it on my break, and again on my lunch hour (didn’t eat anything), and at the parking lot before driving home. So I finished it yesterday morning. It hadn’t even been home 72 hours and I am done.
I liked it. Not in a why did I wait two years before reading you kind of way. But in a I’m looking forward to the film adaptation and the other two books kinda way.
Already, I feel bad for Peeta. That Katniss is bad news for him. Are there going to be Teams Peeta and Gale soon? Or will the love triangle not play out at all? I wonder.
Panem intrigues me. What’s it’s history? How did it come to be? Why call the games, Hunger Games? Now that last one wasn’t really answered was it? Panem is a modern world, but with a very medieval feel to it. Is that really how it’s going to be? History will repeat itself. Anyway. The farther away from the Capitol, the poorer the district is. Poor only because there is not much trading happening between districts, if at all. Each district concentrates only on the trade for which it is known for. It is forbidden to go beyond the fences – too bad because the woods are lush and can provide much to the people who otherwise could have none (can’t afford anything). The Games is an annual event where the districts are pitted against each other. The sole victor earns food and provision for his/her district for a full year. When your tribute becomes the victor, you receive blessings. You get fed for the next year.
The tributes, as soon as their names are drawn, should just as well provide their families with their last will and testament before they are taken to the Capitol.  How many actually expect to go back home? Except for the so-called Careers – kids who ‘train’ and volunteer to become a tribute – who looks forward to being a tribute and competing in the Games? Surely not the child whose name has been entered into drawing many many times in exchange for just enough provisions. 
Whoever thought up the game is ruthless. Play for something, yes, that happens all the time and everywhere. But have kids fight to the death. Tsk. Child abuse. And to make it mandatory viewing for all citizens of Panem. Ugh.
Good thing it’s a fantasy world. Whatever we do in our lifetime, we have to do something to make sure that doesn’t become the reality for our descendants, no matter how many hundreds or thousands of years into the future it is. 
Can’t wait to see the movie. Smile
Oh and guess what, I finally have an entry for the Award Winning Books Reading Challenge!
I’m only aiming for Level 1. Smile
Awards received – lifted directly from Wikipedia:
The Hunger Games received a number of awards and honors. It was named one of Publishers Weekly's "Best Books of the Year" in 2008[52] and a The New York Times "Notable Children's Book of 2008".[53] It was the 2009 winner of the Golden Duck Award in the Young Adult Fiction Category.[54] The Hunger Games was also a "2008 Cybil Winner" for fantasy and science-fiction books along with The Graveyard Book.[55] It also one of School Library Journal's "Best Books 2008"[56] and a "Booklist Editors' Choice" in 2008.[57] In 2011, the book won the California Young Reader Medal.[58] In the 2012 edition of Scholastic's Parent and Child magazine, The Hunger Games was listed as the 33rd best book for children, with the award for "Most Exciting Ending".[59][60]