- Vancouver, British Columbia - The Hunger Games is the bestselling series written by Suzanne Collins. Collins has written another series called Gregor, but her Hunger Games series has captivated the minds of teenagers and adults alike. This post-apocalyptic novel is a refreshing work to see in a time where Young Adult fiction is turning more and more towards Paranormal fiction and jumping on the Twilight bandwagon.
The Hunger Games is about a girl named Katniss Everdeen, a hunter in a time of famine and despair following a great time of war, disease and destruction. In order to protect society, everyone fled to North America, where the city of Panem was born. Panem is ringed by Thirteen districts, each with their own trade and specialty. But the districts rebelled against the Capitol, against Panem, and were defeated. The thirteenth district was obliterated to serve as an example, and every year the remaining twelve districts are forced to participate in the Hunger Games. The Hunger Games have simple rules, that in punishment for the uprising, each of the twelve districts must provide one girl and one boy called tributes to participate. The tributes are chosen out of a pool of children between the ages of 12 to 18. Their names written on a piece of paper and placed in two separate balls, one for girls, one for boys. Every year, another piece of paper with the children’s names are added, until they are old enough to work. There are twenty four tributes in total that must fight until the last one standing, in an arena designed by the game makers, to ensure both entertainment for their Capitol viewers, and make sure the districts never forget who is in charge. The Capitol controls with a heavy fist, they know all, hear all, and see all through their peacekeepers placed in each district, and other means available to them.
Through a twist of fate, Katniss becomes a tribute in the Hunger Games. We follow her through her preparations through the Capitol, being trussed up like a turkey for their own enjoyment, along with the male tribute from district twelve, Peeta. They train, and learn how to survive before being thrown into the arena together with the others, forming unlikely alliances and looking out for each other, but knowing that in the end, only one of them are going to come out of this alive.
Collins creates a gripping story that is difficult to put down. Her descriptions of the places are beautiful and captivating. What was really amazing was Collins' characters. From the beginning, we know much about our main characters and know about their personalities enough to understand the times, and understand a little about how they tick. We know that Katniss is strong and brave, Peeta is compassionate, Prim is delicate, and Gale fiercely protective. We have enough information to build them up, see them in our mind's eye, and feel a bond to them. Some characters we hate, because of how well Collins has made them, others we love so fiercely.
Collins brings back the feel of the Gladiators, and the sickness of how it was a form of entertainment for the Romans, or in this case, the Capitol. The scariest thing about Collins' The Hunger Games is that it is a huge possibility that something similar to this could happen in our future. It’s so real that we can honestly see society becoming more and more like the Capitol, and having a One World Government ruling with a heavy fist.
The Hunger Games is a must read, and a well written piece, for if you’re anything like me, you won’t be able to put it down!
Rating: 4.5/5 Sour Grapes