Saturday, November 6, 2010

Review From the Vault: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

This is the first review I ever wrote. I decided to read The Hunger Games because I needed something to fill the void that the Twilight series left in my reading life and I wasn't quite ready to make the jump to more "adult" books. I'm actually quite proud of this review :P

Hunger Games #1
Young Adult
October 1, 2008
Hardcover, 374 pages
Scholastic, Inc.
Source: Purchased from Chapters bookstore

Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with every one out to make sure you don't live to see the morning?
In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV...
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before—and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that will weigh survival against humanity and life against love...

Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games is truly a unique piece of literature that embodies some of the most popular elements of what fans of The Twilight Saga are looking for. I had no intention of comparing the story to the Twilight novels, but like most Twilight fans I was distraught in trying to find a similar book to read after the series. After reading the synopsis, The Hunger Games was the first book to peak my interest after the Twilight series and I was pleasantly surprised to find that it captures all of aspects that made me fall in love with Twilight, but in a very different story.

In The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins creates an interesting post-apocalyptic world where teens fight to the death for the entertainment of the elite and the good of their districts. The book is full of action and suspense that keeps it fresh and entertaining for the reader, especially in the second half. The leading character, Katniss Everdeen, is strong, resilient, and intelligent which makes her endearing to anyone who values a good female character. Pasha, her fellow district fighter and later love interest, also wins over the reader through his actions to protect Katniss in the games. Collins also hints at a potential love triangle between the characters which includes Katniss, Pasha, and her best friend Gale (who is a boy) that has me brimming with anticipation for the next book.

However, The Hunger Games does have some potential flaws for someone looking for a more realistic read. Collins descriptions of the people in the Capitol and the costumes worn by the characters are quite over the top to the point of being plain cheesy. I also found the names of the different animals and insects engineered by the Capitol unimaginative. However, these are mostly minor annoyances and do not detract from the overall story. The book is also geared towards teens, so those looking for a more adult read might not be satisfied with the story.

Overall, The Hunger Games has everything a Twilight fan is looking for: a strong female character, some lovable guys, action, adventure, suspense, and a little bit of romance. Although it has its flaws, it's still a great read. I would recommend to anyone looking to fill the Twilight void. I know that it took me a good month to find something that caught my eye.

Really liked it! It was mmm mmm good.

Others Opinions:

Other books in the series:
Catching Fire


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