Unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably at least heard about the cultural phenomenon The Hunger Games, first a best-selling trilogy and now a box office hit. I first read the trilogy back in the fall, and I recently reread all three books in anticipation of the midnight showing last week. It only seems appropriate to dedicate this week's Book Club Friday to the first (and best) of the three.
Confession: When it comes to books, I can be a bit of a snob. The more popular a novel, series, or author is with a mainstream audience, the more I resist reading. After years of my favorite librarians telling me to try Harry Potter, I finally acquiesced one Christmas Eve while visiting my mom's family. I was 12 1/2 years old, and my aunt & uncle had just given my family the first three Harry Potter novels. Having already finished the 25 books I'd brought with me for our two-week vacation, I reluctantly started Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. My life has never been the same. I only read Twilight because I had to work the midnight release party for Breaking Dawn--and because bookstore employees could "check out" books from the bookstore like a library.
This fall, I gave in to all my friends who were encouraging me to try Suzanne Collins's trilogy.
I will be eternally grateful for all their harassment.
I love dystopian literature, and Suzanne Collins does not disappoint. In a near-distant future, 13 districts rebel against their Capitol. The 13th district is completely destroyed, and the remaining 12 are reminded annually of their disobedience by participating in the Hunger Games, a battle to the death between 24 children, one boy and one girl from each district.
The book revolves around Katniss Everdeen, a 16-year-old girl from District 12 who hunts illegally to feed her family. When her younger sister's name is randomly drawn at the reaping, Katniss volunteers to take her place in the Games.
I love everything about this book. I love the way flashbacks are woven throughout the story, fleshing out Katniss's character, but also giving the reader pertinent information about other characters, the rebellion, and the background of this society. I love that Katniss is pretty, but in comparison to everything else about her, her looks don't matter. I love the descriptions of the harshness of District 12 and the decadence of the Capitol. I love that the characters are presented in shades of gray.
This book is a page-turner. When I first read it, I stayed up til 2am finishing it. Even rereading it for the movie, I basically didn't do anything else that week. I just reread the trilogy.
Stay tuned for the boyfriend's thoughts. :) Why, yes, I convinced him to start reading it last weekend.