Review: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Title: The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games #1)
Author: Suzanne Collins
Genre: Dystopian, Young Adult
Publisher: Scholastic Children’s Books (1st December 2011)
MAY THE ODDS EVER BEEN IN YOUR FAVOR
WINNING WILL MAKE YOU FAMOUS.
LOSING MEANS CERTAIN DEATH.
In a dark vision of the near future, twelve boys and twelve girls are forced to appear in a live TV show called The Hunger Games. There is only one rule: kill or be killed.
When sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen steps forward to take her sister’s place in the games, she sees it as a death sentence. But Katniss has been close to death before. For her, survival is second nature.
Rating: **** (4 stars)
The Hunger Games is the first book in The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins. It is one of the must-read books for anyone who likes dystopian fiction. This book has been turned into the film. I had already watched and enjoyed the film before I read the book.
In many ways The Hunger Games is a typical member of the dystopian genre: it is set in a dark world, with an opressive regime. However, it differs in the fact that there is no overt rebellion and that by the end of the book the status quo still remains intact, but one must not forget that this is the first book in a trilogy.
I really enjoyed the fact that this book was told in the first person with Katniss as the narrator. First person narration isn’t something I particularly enjoy, as I’ve found that for me I have to like and relate to the narrator. Katniss as a narrator flat-out works for me. I find it really interesting to see her world through her eyes. The first person narration of the book worked much better for me than the third person narration of the films. It meant that I got to be inside Katniss’s head so I could understand her.
I enjoyed reading about all the characters in the book. Katniss obviously adored Prim, it was nice to see and read about a relationship between sisters that was a good one. Katniss was a very strong character; she was very mature in a lot of ways, because she’s had to grow up fast, but in others there was still a certain innocence. I really liked the juxtaposition of innocence and experience in her character. To be honest, I’m not entirely sure what I think of Gale we meet him so briefly in this book. He is a very good and close friend to Katniss, and she relies on him in a way she relies on no other in her life. Peeta too leaves me a bit perplexed, but I think this is mainly because of the narrator. He does seem like a genuinely nice and friendly guy. He is certainly very affable. The other tributes are more of a mystery, as apart from Peeta, Katniss only gets to know only one of them.
If you haven’t read it yet, then I recommend that you pick this book up even if you don’t think you like dystopian fiction. I wasn’t entirely sure I did having struggled with two books in the genre, but The Hunger Games really blew me away.
I've recently completed my English MA with the Open University which I'm really pleased about. I'm a long-time bookaholic and chocolate fan.
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