Twenty-four are forced to enter. Only the winner survives.
In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. Each year, the districts are forced by the Capitol to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the Hunger Games, a brutal and terrifying fight to the death – televised for all of Panem to see.
Survival is second nature for sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who struggles to feed her mother and younger sister by secretly hunting and gathering beyond the fences of District 12. When Katniss steps in to take the place of her sister in the Hunger Games, she knows it may be her death sentence. If she is to survive, she must weigh survival against humanity and life against love.
Why I read this Book:
The buzz. I was on a YA kick and if I didn’t add this book to my TBR pile then I was missing out on all of the awesome discussion on the interwebs in regards to the newest release of Mockingjay.
Absolutely LOVED this book. Positively wanted to get naked under the covers with it. Okay it wasn’t that kind of story, but it was freaking awesome.
But first lets start with the negative. First person present. Like nails on a chalkboard. But the further I got into the book the less I noticed it. Also it was kind of necessary because the story needs to feel immediate.
Second complaint, world building flaws. Why haven’t the adults revolted? WHY? Why are they letting their children be slaughtered? Luckily though, I let this go hoping that this would be cleaned up in a later installment. Glad I let it go. Because the story was all kinds of awesome.
The first thing that moved me and had me on Katniss side was when she took her sisters place for the games. That was the moment I was emotionally tied to the character. Then when Peeta gets called I wonder who will volunteer for him? But no one does and I feel sad. Like Gale what are you doing? But Gale has to stay behind to feed families and to be perfectly honest Peeta is not his responsibility. But a part of me wanted to see more Katniss Gale action, and leaving Gale behind left me a little short in that area.
The other characters we are introduced to are kind of quirky. And considering this is all in first person we get a good idea of who they are still in their own right. Haymitch surprised me, because at first I was embarrassed and ashamed of him, but at the end, I understood why he was the way he was and he is also a cunning bastard. Sharp.
Cinna also became a favorite. Although I wish we got to know more about him. What motivates him? What is his background? He is there, and we learn the here and now of him, but not the what shaped him parts. Too me that is important.
And Peeta. Dear dear Peeta. The boy who’s in love, with a girl who might be able to love him if only someone didn’t have her heart first, and she would actually admit this to herself. He’s kind of one of those good for the sake of good characters, but also a little bit endearing too, so I forgave him his purity.
This book has moments were I squeed, it had moments were I laughed, it had moments were I cried though too, and those moments are when I absolutely 100% knew that I was unequivocally attached. I stayed up late to finish it and I also stayed up thinking about it too. I have ranted about it on my 750words account, and mostly it is about the decisions that need to be made, and my hashing out who Katniss should choose, Peeta or Gale. I think I am team Gale, but I won’t know for sure until I read the last book.
I positively loved the ending of this book. But the ending is only the beginning of the larger story that needs telling. If you haven’t read the series yet you should. If you are like me and like to avoid jumping on the bandwagon until it is almost too late, don’t. You are missing out on what will some day become a classic. (I know I also snarf at classics, but this is a good engaging read.)