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The Hunger Games #1

The Hunger Games

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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 weight survival against humanity and life against love.

374 pages, Hardcover

First published September 14, 2008

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About the author

Suzanne Collins

41 books92.1k followers
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.

Since 1991, Suzanne Collins has been busy writing for children’s television. She has worked on the staffs of several Nickelodeon shows, including the Emmy-nominated hit Clarissa Explains it All and The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo. For preschool viewers, she penned multiple stories for the Emmy-nominated Little Bear and Oswald. She also co-wrote the critically acclaimed Rankin/Bass Christmas special, Santa, Baby! Most recently she was the Head Writer for Scholastic Entertainment’s Clifford’s Puppy Days.

While working on a Kids WB show called Generation O! she met children’s author James Proimos, who talked her into giving children’s books a try.

Thinking one day about Alice in Wonderland, she was struck by how pastoral the setting must seem to kids who, like her own, lived in urban surroundings. In New York City, you’re much more likely to fall down a manhole than a rabbit hole and, if you do, you’re not going to find a tea party. What you might find...? Well, that’s the story of Gregor the Overlander, the first book in her five-part series, The Underland Chronicles. Suzanne also has a rhyming picture book illustrated by Mike Lester entitled When Charlie McButton Lost Power.

She currently lives in Connecticut with her family and a pair of feral kittens they adopted from their backyard.

The books she is most successful for in teenage eyes are The Hunger Games, Catching Fire and Mockingjay. These books have won several awards, including the GA Peach Award.

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Profile Image for Saniya.
360 reviews797 followers
December 4, 2013
LMAAAOOOO! Thats Peeta folks! xD


Hahahahaha, Totally! xD


HAHAHAHAHA! Laughed my ass off on this! XD




OMFG. HUNGER GAMES. CINEMA. O.O IT.WAS.FREAKING.AMAZING.
Am I...am I still alive...? o.O *pinches myself* -ouch! Yes, I can stay alive for the next movie.
And I was crying before the movie even started. Damn cinema, showing 'The Titanic 3D' movie trailer. >.<
OMG, there were sooo many moments where I was crying. And God, I love my Pakistani people, they were so much fun to watch with :') <3
Go and watch The Hunger Games movie NOW!
When is the next movie coming? :'D <3



I just died. OH YES I DID becaaaussseee...
‘Hunger Games’ Clip: Peeta Mellark’s Interview With Caesar!!!
OMG PEETA LOOKS SO HOT! OMG OMG OMG! <3 And how he says, well, shes here with me! :'D
http://mockingjay.net/2012/03/12/hung...

The Hunger Games ET Behind The Scenes [Extended Version]
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=...
*Yes people, in this video you can watch Peeta escaping for his life, throwing breads and hugging Katniss* EEEE! ^_^

Five Days and 21 hours till the Red carpet premiere...
OMFG OMFG OMFG! O_O
Anyway guys, KATNISS AND CINNA FULL 4 MIN SCENE!
http://movies.yahoo.com/movie/the-hun...

Another SONG released. Its so creppy and weird. LOVE IT! xD
Arcade Fire - Abraham's Daughter
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1N9qiD...

OMG! ONE OF THE HUNGER GAMES SCENES! xD
(When Katniss shoots arrow in the apple while preparing)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L761Sr...
After watching this, I am like, "FUCK YEA! ^_^"

27 days.... OMFG! ^_^ SO DAMN EXCITED! :D
Anyway, new picture people!! :D

Peeta painting. Now isn’t that just adorable. XD <3

Josh Hutcherson (Awesome one)interview:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eoow-j...

OMG OMG! THE ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK! <3
Deep Shadows by T.T.L:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJWT2b...
I am getting chills. This instrumental is Perfect.

New picture! =D


*Official cover*


OMG! FIRST SOUNDTRACK RELEASED! ^_^ <3
Safe and Sound by no other than TAYLOR SWIFT FT THE CIVIL WAR.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFEDTt...
Ok. I thought it would be like you know, metal, but this rocks! =D <3

THE OFFICIAL TRAILER! OMG OMG OMG! ITS PERFECT! ITS FAB! *girl squeal!* THIS IS SO FREAKING AMAZING! xD
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p-5ANq...
For me its like, I read this series. I loved them. Then I saw the first book becoming a movie. And now watching the trailer, I feel so good. Like a dream come true. =)
And I already watched the trailer like, 15-20 times. XD

Yeah. I nearly died while looking at this pictures. X__X







Whats the use of reviewing this book when its awesome and everybody knows it! I.just.can't.wait.till.freaking.March.23.2012. =D

****** May The Odds Be Ever In Your Favor ! *******
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Miranda Reads.
1,588 reviews153k followers
December 10, 2020
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Latest BookTube Video is up - a totally serious take on writing Young Adult Lit!
The Written Review :
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“Happy Hunger Games! And may the odds be ever in your favor.”
Every year, Panem (post-apacolyptic North America) hosts a Hunger Games involving one female and one male representative from each of its twelve districts to fight to the death.

All of the Districts of Panem must watch the Games as a form of yearly "entertainment" when in actuality, it's a power play put on by the Capitol (the wealthiest of the districts).
For there to be betrayal, there would have to have been trust first.
The Capitol uses the Games as a way to demonstrate the sheer helplessness of the other Districts and to keep the population cowed and in fear.

When Katniss's sister (twelve-year-old Prim) is chosen as this year's competitor, Katniss volunteers to take her place. Peeta, a boy from the "richer" side of District 12 is chosen as the male representative.
I'm more than just a piece in their Games.
Soon, she and Peeta are whisked away to the Capitol - a place of incredible wealth and heartbreaking cruelity. And while Katniss has sworn to come back to her sister, she really has to wonder, what will be left of her if she returns.
“Here's some advice. Stay alive.”
Honestly, this was the best apocalyptic YA teen novel I've read this year.

To be fair, this was one of the very first YA series I read, so every time I re-read it, I am just overwhelmed with nostalgia.

But, when I take off my rose-tinted glasses, I still think it's a pretty solid series.

The characters are really well-done.

I love how Katniss's motivation is both pure and ruthlessness - and her personality isn't tainted with over-the-top self-sacrificing eyerollingly awful simpering mess that I see in quite a few of the newer YA series.

Katniss's love for her sister humanized her otherwise stiff character. Her pride and will to survive energized the novel and kept me absolutely hooked.

I appreciate that the smidge of romance does not overpower the novel. Finally, a YA novel that plot doesn't solely hang on a love triangle - I love that it's more of a survivalist story.

Overall, really pleased with this novel - cannot wait to reread the rest!

Audiobook Comments
Read by Carolyn McCormick and she gave life to Katniss! Loved the audio.

And here's another booktube video!:
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If you've ever wondered which literary world would be the best to live in, wonder no longer, cause there's a BookTube Video to answer that!


YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Snapchat @miranda_reads
November 24, 2015
I was forced into watching Mockingjay: Part II this weekend. To clarify, I watched the second part of the last Hunger Games movie without having read any of the books, without having watched any of the movies.

Needless to say, I was confused as fuck.

So many questions and thoughts ran through my mind as I watched the movie. Why is Peeta so thin? Did that huge-ass bruise really disappear from her neck the next day? Is Katniss supposed to look like she's about to burst into tears at any given moment, or is that just Jennifer Lawrence? Woody Harrelson is in this movie? Hey, it's Margaery from Game of Thrones! Who's President Snow? What's a Mockingjay? Lesser Hemsworth is pretty hot.

Well, you get the point. I know how the book ended and I still have no idea who anyone is, and neither do I know their names, with the exception of Peeta, Gale, President Snow, that Coin woman, and Katniss. Of course, knowing how the book ended means I probably should read the first book, so here I am, the last person on earth to read The Hunger Games.

And it was good. It was really good. My sister was right (she usually is).

What else can I say that hasn't already been said? I loved it. The world building was interesting (although it helps that I've seen what it looks like on the big screen), and Katniss is awesome. One of the things my sister didn't like about the first movie is that the on-screen Katniss was different from her portrayal in the first book. I haven't watched that movie, but I kind of see how the screen portrayal of Katniss might have bothered her. Book-Katniss is strong, kick-ass without being a Mary Sue. She has a fierce love for her sister, and she is manipulative and cunning. She uses the prospect of romance to protect herself, she has no qualms about using people, and I love that about her.

Time to watch Movie #1!
Profile Image for Dija.
413 reviews230 followers
December 3, 2013
My "Epic Book Recipe" Checklist for The Hunger Games:

1. A sharp and intelligent heroine with just the right amount of emotion who gives in to absolutely nothing and no one?

2. A sweet and sensitive hero who loves and supports the heroine unconditionally?

3. An original setting with a unique and thrilling plot?

4. A couple of earth-shattering shocks every now and then to keep the readers' mind reeling?

5. Extraordinary side characters from interesting backgrounds who possess the much-needed Voice of Reason and/or Humor in every crisis?

6. Desperate circumstances that force me to bite my nails in anxiety?

7. An ending that provides the perfect premise for the sequel but also concludes the present book?

Like I said, EPIC.


For more reviews, visit my blog.
Profile Image for Ariel.
301 reviews64.2k followers
April 22, 2020
Absolute solid gold standard. Phenomenal. Don't let the movies pollute your memories of this book, it is OUTSTANDING.
Profile Image for Kat.
256 reviews78.7k followers
July 12, 2022
she really was the blueprint
Profile Image for Nataliya.
714 reviews11.3k followers
December 4, 2013

Suzanne Collins has balls ovaries of steel to make us willingly cheer for a teenage girl to kill other children. In a YA book.
Two reasons why this book rocks: (a) It is not Twilight, and (b) I really hate reality shows.

Seriously, how long would it take for reality shows to evolve from "Survivor" to "Hunger Games"?

Yes, this book is full of imperfections. It often requires a strenuous suspension of disbelief. It can cause a painful amount of eye-rolling and shaking fist at the book pages. Its style is choppy and the first-person present tense gets annoying. The story is simple, and the message is heavy-handed. But is does set a better example for young impressionable pre-teens than gushing stories about sparkly co-dependency. And here is an obligatory taken out of contest Twilight-bashing quote:
“But just the fact that he was sparkling leads me to doubt everything that happened.”
So why did I add it to my to-read list for my future (hypothetical) daughter? Because Katniss is cool and a badass. She is fierce, independent, resourceful, intelligent, and skilled. She is loyal to her friends and family. She is a survivor. She will never allow a guy to carry her around as though she is a delicate flower. She skewers that apple in the pig's mouth with an arrow in front of the Gamemakers in the most awesome way imaginable. For all that, I love this imperfect, surly, prickly, sullen and perpetually pissed-off, quick to jump to judgment, and sometimes clueless girl.



And I love this book because - despite The Hunger Games being YA literature that seems to hinge on the romantic puppy love - the happiness of Katniss does not revolve solely around a cute male lead. Yes, there is a (hated) love triangle here *eyeroll* but there are other issues that occupy Katniss' mind - such as the survival of her friends, family, and herself rather than just pining over a cute boy. (*)
* Unlike other so-called "books", where a boyfriend of a few months dumping you is a valid reason for catatonia and almost-suicide.(**)

** And yet we still get readers who divide themselves into the incredibly annoying "Team Peeta" and "Team Gale". (***)

*** Because clearly nothing else ever matters besides sappy love - in a book about children murdering each other. *eyeroll*



Now, here is what bugged me about the romance that DID make it into the book. There is actually a LOST OPPORTUNITY here to have a YA book where people CAN be just friends, where devotion and loyalty stem from friendship and respect and not from attraction.

Katniss and Peeta could have had plenty of other reasons to care for each other that don't include puppy love - they are from the same district, same school, he gave her that bread, she trades with his dad, etc. But alas, that did not happen. I understand that Collins had to cater to the way that YA publishers and Hollywood tend to view us, the female audience. At least Katniss escapes the perils of insta-love. But poor Peeta - all of his actions are colored by him being "Lover Boy", and I think it detracts from his personality and reduces him from a kind compassionate person to a fool in love who'd do anything for Katniss only because of his physical attraction to her. Yeah...

...Rue...Oh, Rue...

Now, back to the GOOD. Rue, my favorite character. Little, fragile, almost-too-perfect Rue who was clearly doomed from the start. Who despite her appearance was neither weak nor helpless. Whose brought the human side to Katniss (who, until that point, was almost bordering on robotic). There was real grief and anger and sadness in that scene, and from that point on I began to care.

Suzanne Collins strictly follows the "show, don't tell" rule. (Actually, she does it to such an extent that the book reads almost like a screenplay.) The plot moves along at a fast pace, only slowing down a bit in the drawn out Capitol makeover and cave makeout sessions. Collins does not shy away from gruesome scenes, making many parts of the book hit home.
----------
I enjoyed it despite the imperfections. Katniss easily beats the majority of the popular YA heroines. And because of all her coolness, this gets 3.75 stars.
"Exactly how am I supposed to work in a thank-you in there? Somehow it just won't seem sincere if I'm trying to slit his throat."
-----------------------------------------
EDITED TO ADD:
So I saw the movie today. All I have to say - Suzanne Collins may have given life to Katniss, but Jennifer Lawrence definitely gave her heart. Lawrence's Katniss has such emotional depth, and she brings such truthfulness to her character. Excellent adaptation with a great balance of tugging on the heartstrings and darkness.

I CRIED TWICE (yes, apparently I am less of a cynic than I thought).
First time - when Katniss volunteers for Prim and people salute her. I JUST CHOKED UP. It felt so real. I have a brother who is much younger than me, and all I could think at that moment was how I would do the exact same thing for him WITHOUT ANY HESITATION. It wouldn't even be a choice. Just like it wasn't for Katniss. *Sob*
The second time I teared up - Rue. Oh Rue... And the salute from District 11 - so powerful and so touching. I...I...I just can't...

PLEASE EXCUSE ME WHILE I GO AND GRAB A BOX OF TISSUES. OR TWO. OR TEN. *SOB*

Profile Image for Melanie.
1,154 reviews97.7k followers
January 8, 2021


Hello, I am back again with another breakdown review while I relearn how to write reviews. But basically the TL;DR of this review is that The Hunger Games truly holds up so well in 2020, and this reread was such a treat. I felt such nostalgia, happiness, and hope between these pages, and I already can’t wait to revisit this story again. Also, again, this review will have spoilers, so use caution if you don’t want me to tell you what happens in each chapter of this book!

“How could I leave Prim, who is the only person in the world I'm certain I love?”

➽ Chapter One:
This first chapter really starts off with a heartbreaking bang. We quickly learn so many characters, but we even more quickly learn what type of character Katniss Everdeen is. The basic premise of this tale is that there are twelve districts and once a year each district will select two young candidates to fight to the death in a game, which will also be broadcasted for the world to see. Every year, a teenagers name gets added once to this random selection pool, but each year they get older another time their name gets added. Also, you can add your name more times to get food and supplies for your family, and this is very much the norm for most children. Katniss’s sister, Prim, only has her name in the drawing once because it is her first time, where Katniss has her name added over twenty times. Yet, you see where this is going…

➽ Chapter Two:
Once Prim’s name is pulled, Katniss immediately volunteers to take her place in the games. Meanwhile, the boy contestant is Peeta Mellark, who Katniss remembers giving her bread when her family was starving after the death of their father. Together, they are thrown into a competition that no one believes they will be able to come back alive. Especially since only one victor is allowed, therefore one of them will most certainly have to die.

➽ Chapter Three:
Katniss is given her iconic mockingjay pin that will literally change the world as she knows it.

➽ Chapter Four:
Haymitch punches Peeta to make him look rougher, lol. The journey Haymitch is about to take alongside these two kids as their mentor, whew.

➽ Chapter Five:
Cinna (my favorite character), makes Katniss a fire dress in which the world has never seen, and will be the first time the world finds it extremely hard to forget her or her name. Also, unknown to Katniss, a start of a public romance is brewing with Peeta to help their image. We also get to meet President Snow and start to get a vibe of all the evil things he has been stirring up for some time now.

➽ Chapter Six:
Katniss and Peeta make it to the training center and they start to learn about the other candidates from the other districts. We also get to learn about the different privileges of the other districts, and how some of these candidates view this as an honor to volunteer their life for (without needing to save a little sister). We also get to see Rue, and it’s really hard to not feel like you want to reach into the pages and protect her yourself.

➽ Chapter Seven:
Katniss makes quite the impression with an arrow and an apple, that many important people of the Capitol find very hard to ignore.

➽ Chapter Eight:
This is the start of the Peeta versus Gale debate, and the brewing of a very opinionated love-triangle. For me, personally, I always think it’s obvious in Katniss’s inner monologue that she only likes Peeta, but I digress.

➽ Chapter Nine:
We get to meet Caesar Flickerman and see Katniss and Peeta’s vastly different interviews with him. Peeta is coached to very much play the star-crossed lovers card, and he even tells Caesar that he loves Katniss more than anything.

➽ Chapter Ten:
This is the start of Part 2, where they games are finally going to begin. And Cinna says my favorite line in the entire series to Katniss. So simple, so beautiful, so heartbreaking.

“I'm not allowed to bet, but if I could, I'd bet on you.”

➽ Chapter Eleven:
The twenty-four tributes are entering the game, and in the middle is a cornucopia filled with weapons and supplies… if you are brave enough to make a run for them. Peeta distracts her at the very start of the game, so Katniss doesn’t go for the bow. And we quickly see that people are starting to form groups to take out some of the weaker players.

➽ Chapter Twelve:
Katniss is proving that she will do whatever it takes to survive.

➽ Chapter Thirteen:
Katniss is still up in a tree, surviving, when she sees Rue and they form a silent plan together.

➽ Chapter Fourteen:
She does get the medicine she needs from someone out there watching her in the world, who is rooting for her and her life. After with the help of some killer, engineered wasps… she is able to get down from this tree and gets a bow.

➽ Chapter Fifteen:
Katniss teams up with Rue, while they come up with a big plan to make it a little harder for the districts teaming up with all the supplies.

➽ Chapter Sixteen:
Yeah, Katniss blows up the whole cornucopia.

➽ Chapter Seventeen:
Yet, while Katniss and Rue are trying to meet up again with their mockingjay signals, Rue gets killed by a spear. Katniss sings to her, and realizes that nothing will be the same in her life again, no matter how long she has left.

➽ Chapter Eighteen:
Katniss is trying to deal with the hurt and pain and loss as best as she can, but she also is very hard of hearing in one of her ears now. And she also knows that Peeta has been wounded and is missing.

➽ Chapter Nineteen:
But beyond all else, Katniss is a tracker and a hunter, and she quickly looks for Peeta at a water source and finds him. They also share a kiss when they find shelter, and she vows that she is not going to let him die.

➽ Chapter Twenty:
This chapter has some beautiful foreshadowing of giving Peeta some berries.

➽ Chapter Twenty-One:
Basically, at this point, each contestant needs a certain supply very badly, so they place the things they need back in the middle of the map, and Katniss goes to retrieve theirs. She does get very injured in the process but makes it back to heal him. Thresh helped Katniss because of what she did for Rue.

➽ Chapter Twenty-Two:
Peeta takes care of Katniss and they get more care-packages because they are now the Capitol’s OTP and everyone is rooting for them and their romance.

➽ Chapter Twenty-Three:
Thresh dies, and it breaks my heart every time because I highkey always root for him too. District 11 just deserved better. Cato is still alive, still the biggest threat, and still hella annoying. And then we have some more berry foreshadowing when a girl dies eating some.

➽ Chapter Twenty-Four:
Now that there are only three people left (Katniss, Peeta, and Cato) the game makers want them to finally put an end to the 74th Hunger Games once and for all. Kato runs at them, while wolves start running after them.

➽ Chapter Twenty-Five:
And we quickly find out that the wolves are none other than the people who died in the games. Well, I think at least. They for sure have the tributes eyes, and it just makes it extra freaky. But basically, after some fighting and some monologues, Kato is dying to the wolves slowly, but Katniss puts him out of his misery. They were promised earlier that if Katniss and Peeta were the final two of the game that they could both win and live, but now the game makers are trying to change that game right before them. And since they are saying there can only be one victor, Katniss takes a risk with those beloved berries and her an Peeta threaten suicide before all the people watching from the comfort of their own homes.

➽ Chapter Twenty-Six:
But because they need a winner, they decide two is better than none, so they both are able to live. Katniss wakes up in a hospital where her body is healing and she is able to hear out of her one ear again. She gets to see Cinna, and believe that maybe their lives will be normal again. But Katniss quickly realizes that the Capitol is terribly upset that she played with them, and they are not going to ignore her actions in the game.

➽ Chapter Twenty-Seven:
Katniss gets to see Peeta again, and they are forced to watch all the deaths that happened in the game during their winner’s interview. They both have taken so much damage physically and mentally, and they know that Snow is not through hurting them, or the people they love, by a longshot.

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Trigger and Content Warnings for loss of a parent, animal death(s), abandonment, depression, PTSD depiction, blood depiction, alcoholism, gore, violence, and murder.

Buddy read with Lea & Johely! ❤
Profile Image for Jana.
1,080 reviews424 followers
September 24, 2015
A lot of things are troubling me about The Hunger Games. A lot of things which I more and more perceive and which are not solely connected with this book but with the metaphor behind the words. People attach themselves to fictional freedom without seeing what really something is and which unfortunately is here to stay because you can't wake a person who is pretending to be asleep. You can’t make a shift on a deeper level, if the only thing that attracts you to this book is – a vision of fight, retaliation and the outcome of freedom. Freedom of flesh.

In comparison to the freedom of and from your mind which is nowhere to be found.

And this is why I detest this book, although detest is such a strong from the ego word. Because the whole purpose of this story is to show how people shouldn’t sacrifice their children for the better of their communities and with the positive outcomes realise that we are so much stronger and yada yada.

THE WHOLE PURPOSE of this book should be that there shouldn’t even be in the first place a need to sacrifice members of our society for some other people to be amused. And where after the battle of ''united'' people we heal and repair the damages for the better tomorrow. The society cancer of western civilisation thinking.

Heal the damage, never heal the cause of it.

But then we wouldn’t be talking here about the same book. We would be discussing how humanity can help each other with being better, with taking responsibility and with being open to each other.

And yet imagine this paradox we live in: better, as if the majority of population can even understand that we are in constant blood thirst to achieve peace. With war comes peace. While along the way we are trying to be better and safer. Yet most people deliberately choose to live on the utmost lowest level of their existence. In fear, frightened of itself.

And people read books which are so extreme in their bullshit. And people connect with Katniss because she is the heroine. She has managed to outsmart the system. Instead of thinking that she was not even supposed be there in the first place. Because we live in society that does this to their children.

''No, we don’t!''

''We do...''

''But children can learn how to fight.''

''You teach them to fight for individual puppeteers. And instead of working on yourself, how to achieve your inner peace, you associate yourself again with the group because it feels better to be in the tortured crowd, instead of being alone and awakened.''

''What are you talking about? It is just emo gibberish. Leave Katniss alone. And in the end, it is just a book. Why don’t you want people to read and educate themselves, does everything have to be deep and meaningful, can’t you just relax?''

Yes, everything has to be deep and meaningful since we are drowning in shit of meaningless and shallow. The system as it is, the plot of this book is just another evidence to show us how we are controlled. That we are left barren from our true selves which we only find in empathy, love towards each other and genuinely understanding that we are one and everything is one. But on this provincial&marginal&primitive&emotional level, so many took this book for granted.

And the only reason I am writing this review here, the only reason I am giving it so much attention is to tell what is on my mind since it is so widely popular and since I have read it. And one of the main reasons why I can’t really keep things light and popsy is because so many things are already deep down in gutter light and popsy and mainstream. As if having money is any critieria for life, as if not having your own free will and education and information means nothing. And the other side of the rich coin is poverty with people who believe in symbols, who are sidetracked with religions, censured TV, economy and utter lack of information circulation.

And a lot of people here are trying to disregard this review and want to reassure me that I am so terribly wrong. BUT, you have yet not seen what I am talking about and it is perfectly OK.

So I followed as well screaming Goodreads recommendations and I bought a book that is stupid, violent and written so plainly but of course written for vast masses so they can be touched by fake social awareness. Because it is fake, but most of all it’s tragic.

And this is not a critique toward Collins, in my nature of a thinker and seeing her a person who shared her thoughts and which millions of people loved and connected with, I am still a firm believer that the general public just didn’t understand what she was talking about. And this is my silver lining. Because it has been like this throughout centuries and with the biggest thinkers of our civilisation. What they meant and wanted to show, is definitely not what most of the public projected.

Because the mainstream public is a group of sheep, not seeing anything properly, but following and like a Tarzan, screaming, don’t you dare stealing my Jane from me. As a metaphor, don’t you dare telling me these uplifting emotions are not true, when all in me about this book tells me that is correct and how people should live their lives.

And if the mainstream likes it, uh, then definitely that is not what it’s true.

It is just a constant reminder how so many things are left unrecognised while these superficial stories which evoke cheap emotions are always so hugely praised. It could have been just a little story but never underestimate the obese octopus that is called In God And Country We Trust - code red mentality. Mentality of humans which are too ignorant, beautifully naive and untouched basically with what is means to be socially aware.

And although this is a teen book, it is more deeply hurting and sickening because if you want to influence somebody, of course you will influence the children – and yet there is nothing that children can learn from it. They can learn some things, we all need little courageous Katniss, but on a deeper subtler level is it just an intravenous injection of more Nothing and more Numbing and more Disconnected.

At least they read is one of the arguments. And argument as fruitfull as at least they eat GMO food. One food for the blind intellect, other for the digestion which both results in basic survival without any interference of you in all of it. Because it takes courage and guts and a pinch of anarchy to stop, turn around and start questioning what is handed.

For me, the thought about giving this to a child is sickening especially because we live in this world where all the life criterias are upside down. Because a child will not learn how things are vile and disturbing because Katniss told them through her delusional and hyperventilating focus, but a child will learn about life’s cruelty, and it will be touched by it sooner or later, by questioning everything that is served in front of it.

Because if it is served somebody is earning money and you are just getting fatter and sicker.

And the children will learn how to question if you teach them how to find not if you broadcast them the answers. Not if you teach them through aggressive examples and if you keep the nation in cold sweat especially if you are lucky enough to live in the countries where oppression is not the issue but consumerism, body image and mediocrity have you on the leash.

I am astonished with a fact that around 75.000 Goodreads members read this book and that around 50.000 of them rated it 5 stars. What is it that fascinates them so much.

It’s disturbing because people obviously associate and find themselves in this book. And it's about a girl Katniss Everdeen, living in the far away future, who was chosen to participate in a cruel Big Brother game, in which 24 contestants (children age 12-18) kill each other, because live TV has become demanding, and the public loves reality blood and violence. That's it. A little bit of undeveloped and unbelievable romance between her and two boys, a little bit of her abandoned family problems, a little bit of The 5th element movie political structure, mutants and pop stylists. It’s so screwed up.

In the beginning, first 50 pages were well written. There was suspense, Katniss was sweet and witty, but overall this book is a shitty meltdown. Adding the ridiculous cliffhanger ending. Some people here are using words like dystopian literature, and then write essays about how this book is the core of it.

The core is pointlessly graphic and sadistic, without any concrete message except of the negative: this book is just proving that the world today is fucked up if this book is so successful. I don’t see the point of reading about the fictional kids who are doing this to each other.

In a metaphorical way it is promoting political establishments of certain countries and that is getting tiring. Not all people are eager to swallow the shit of general brainwashing. Katniss being the heroine (ironical quote marks). Being loyal and darling and a role model. Just wake up. Life is happening and some pretty dark things are happening while you are thinking that Katniss is the representative of the club called liberation.

For me, in a bookish way it stands for one bad one night stand, kiss and forget. But as always, readers tend to bring fiction to their real life and just as many think that kittens and superheroes are comfort zones, a lot of readers perceive this plot as their own little shrine.

But that is me not being in tune with the mainstream population which is too distracted with billboards.

Because it is easier, because why protest, why not simply take what you are given - eat your GMO Monsanto's company hamburgers, eat your cancer giving Nestle products and think that The Hunger Games are the best franchise ever, like ever. If you don't have any arguments about real life activism and if you think that there is deepness in this plot which I have yet not seen so you need to enlightened me, just include North Korea or Hitler or ISIS(L) or those poor people who are closed in Zara hangers who work nonstop ''somewhere'' in the world because obviously you are aware of the crisis although you don’t think you could show on the map but you have heard somewhere on Murdoch media.

This shit sells. It's genuinely bad but excellently targeted. You know, it evokes pride and loyalty and massacring children, freedom and scandal and Hollywood. It goes very well with all the Kardashian filth. As long as it sells, sells, sells. And marketing agencies know that people are united when they are jealous, when they want and they with those hamburgers want freedom. Nobody is going to kill their Katniss in a goddam book! Really? Take a look around you.

And then the punch line for this book comes from the so called activism from the shopping mall. People who devour literature of this kind and think that everything is all right while in the same time, fuck, you are getting oozingly fat.

Bottom line.

This book is very shallow and MTV culture oriented, like a classical example of easy consummated pop-literature; I'm very surprised that it didn't come with some trash magazine subscription. If it doesn't have savage brutality, prize money and prefix ''media coverage'' then it won't be appealing and educational because surely this is how children of 21st century survive this techno media world; through examples of true moral issues and realistic outcomes. Have another gulp of Coca-Cola along the way while you listen to dubstep shit.

It saddens me when a violent hillbillish book is so popular. What is there to truly identify yourself with. Except if your chicken soup for soul are basic emotions which come with buy 1 get 1 free.
Profile Image for Cecily.
1,095 reviews3,838 followers
March 29, 2016
If I were a teenager or recommending this to a teen, I might give it 3*; as an adult, I give it 2*.

PLOT

It's a potentially exciting but gruesome story, but most of the characters were rather flat, much of the plot was predictable (it's not hugely original; in particular, it is VERY similar to the Japanese "Battle Royale"), and there were too many flaws in the plot. I fail to understand its very high ratings.

Post-apocalyptic America (Panem) is divided into a wealthy and technologically advanced Capitol and twelve subsidiary districts of oppressed people who exist in dire poverty, with inadequate food, housing, and health care and hardly any technology. To reinforce the power of the Capitol by instilling fear in the population, once a year, two children from each region are selected by lots to fight to the death in a reality show. If that were not bad enough, the whole thing is utterly corrupt in multiple ways, plus the public bet on the outcome, and sponsors can sway the results. Did I mention these are children? (Some are as young as 12, though the narrator is 16.) A compulsory full-body wax on a teen seems rather pervy and who would want to bet on, let alone sponsor a child-killing tournament, even if it's by helping one of the contestants? As the book keeps reminding readers, one person's survival is only possible by the death of all the others.

CRUELTY TO CHILDREN

I realise that horrendous things are done to children around the world every day (extreme poverty, child soldiers, sexual assault, genital mutilation etc), but in none of those cases is the sole intention that all but one child dies, and nor is it organised by the government for a sick combination of sport, entertainment, punishment and profit.

Humans often lack compassion, but I was never convinced by Collins' world - especially the fact this outrage has continued for three generations (it's the 74th games), apparently without the Capitol even needing to invoke gods or supernatural powers to justify their cruelty! Could a barbaric annual tournament really be such a powerful incentive not to rise up in all that time? (I don't think so.)

BIG ISSUES

Nevertheless, it tackles some big themes that are particularly pertinent to teens: the nature of friendship; divided loyalties; the difference between love and friendship; who to trust; whether the ends justify the means; the need to repay favours; the danger of power, wealth and celebrity; the corrupting influence of reality TV; the need for independence, and whether you can trust a parent who abandons you.

It all feels rather laboured to me, but it might not if I were a teen, which only reinforces my puzzlement at the number of adults who have enjoyed it. I must be missing something.

NARRATIVE STRUCTURE

Nearly half the book is backstory and preparation for the games; the remainder is a tale of hunter and hunted. I predicted the main plot twist less than a quarter of the way in (and the fact that Katniss is telling the story limits the possible outcomes), but the suspense was broken when it was made explicit way before the end. There are some other twists between then and the final page, but by then I was rather annoyed with the whole thing.

IMPLAUSIBILITY AND INCONSISTENCIES

If I'd enjoyed the book more, I would have found it easier to suspend my disbelief, but as it was, I was constantly irked by questions and inconsistencies.

* The contestants (and their parents and grandparents) have been forced to watch the games every year of their lives. I suppose they had become inured to it, but on the other hand, that meant they knew the horror of it. I just didn't believe there was as little fear in them as there appeared to be - given that they are children.
* Participants don't want other participants to know where they are, yet sponsor gifts occasionally drop out of the sky, via silver parachute; not a risk, apparently.
* It's all filmed by numerous invisible floating cameras (I can buy that), but that somehow includes filming inside a cave that is virtually sealed (I can't).
* How (and why) would any of these participants be able to measure time to within half hour intervals?
* How big is Panem? It can only be a tiny part of the USA because each district specialises in only one thing (coal mining, agriculture etc) and has just one town square that can accommodate everyone (8,000 people in District 12) and yet it's a day's train journey from District 12 to the Capitol. It doesn't seem like a very plausible settlement pattern in a post-disaster world, even given the totalitarian regime (concentrating people in a few centres makes it easier to observe and perhaps control them, but it also creates more opportunities for opposition movements to develop).

COMPARED WITH LORD OF THE FLIES

There are some similarities with "Lord of the Flies" (my review here: http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...), but although "The Hunger Games" is likely to have more appeal to modern teens, I think there are (at least) two crucial differences:

* In LotF one person's survival is not necessarily at the cost of everyone else's. (It is even possible that they could all survive.)

* LotF has much more depth and symbolism: it tackles original sin; the mystical "Beast"; leadership, tribal allegiance and group dynamics (including bullying and attitudes to difference and minor disability) and the importance of ritual and belief.

The second point is what makes LotF a better book, in my opinion.

Of course, there are other, more obvious, parallels with extreme "reality" shows such as "Survivor" and "I'm a Celebrity, get me out of here", but the fundamental differences are not just that contestants in those shows do not fear for their lives, but that they are adults who have chosen to enter.

I TRIED TO ENJOY IT!

Any fans who read this will now hate me. I wanted to enjoy this book, and I read it all the way through, making notes as usual, but to no avail. Sorry.
Profile Image for Meredith Holley.
Author 2 books2,199 followers
December 4, 2013
For a long time now, I’ve wanted to rewrite my review of The Hunger Games so that I could tell you why I don’t just love this series, but why I also think it’s important. It is beautiful for the unflinching way it shows you, as a reader, your own willingness to disregard people who are different from you - how you are the Capitol audience. But, it is important as a story about girls. I had not initially thought about articulating that point because it seemed so obvious to me, and I am bad at recognizing my own assumptions. Lately, though, I have seen so many people, both men and women, acting as though this remarkable book is a piece of fluff that I realized maybe what I love most about The Hunger Games is not as obvious as it seems. To me, this series is important because it is a landmark departure from the traditional story about girls.

Too often, stories objectify women. But the word “objectify,” I’ve realized, has almost no meaning for someone who has either not experienced objectification or who hasn’t really recognized it in her own life, so I’m going to be more descriptive here. When I say stories objectify girls, I mean they talk about girls as though they are fleshlights that sometimes have handy dandy extra gadgets such as an all-purpose cleaning mechanism and food dispensing function.

Sidebar: if you are inclined to now google the word "fleshlight," I encourage you to consult the urban dictionary definition here before doing that, as the google results will probably be NSFW and also NSF those of you whose parents might check your browsing history. Do parents know how to do that? Sorry for the sidebar, I am just intending to make an explicit point, and now I am feeling uncomfortable about what that explicit point might mean to the target audience of this book. Girls, you are probably badass like Katniss, and you are definitely not a fleshlight.

Back to my rant about typical objectification in storytelling: often the girls fleshlights have fancy outer designs because it makes the fleshlights happy to be fancy. Sometimes they have skeeeeeery castration functions, and other times they work as helpful databases for music or video games or whatever UR into. A lot of times, I will hear people refer to this type of objectification as treating women like they are just a vagina, or a pair of boobs, but I think there is something to the stories that is less human and more sexbot machine than that complaint covers.

So, in all of those links, I have tried to include books written by men and by women because I think that women think of ourselves this way almost as often as men think of us this way. The link from The Ugly Truth, for example, shows both a man and a woman treating women like fleshlights. I have also included both books I love and books I hate because, ultimately, I do think girls adopt this story about themselves, and I also think we can pretty easily identify with a male protagonist and disregard female characters who look nothing like humans. For example, The Sun Also Rises is one of my favorite books in the whole world, even though it does not contain any women who resonate with my experience of humans. And I don't think it's necessarily bad that I can enjoy stories where women are only fleshlights, as long as I can still be whoever I want to be without a positive role model. I think it's good to enjoy stories and take what we can get from them, and so I don't regret that I love The Sun Also Rises.

In seeing some male reactions to The Hunger Games, I am reminded that most men do not identify with female protagonists the way women have been trained to identify with male protagonists. This seems like a huge disadvantage for men to be in, to me, and if you are a man reading this review, I would ask you to check out your bookshelves. How many female authors are on your shelves? How many of the books those authors wrote have no central male character? If you have a minute after that, check the shelves of a woman you are friends with and see how many of her books were written by men or have no central female character. Odds are the results will be pretty different.

The Hunger Games is such a groundbreaking and deliberate example of a woman’s perspective on war and family and even men that it floors me. I think it partly floors me because, other than Buffy, I can’t think of another example of a female character who really fights for herself in such an obvious and hopeful way. Katniss is strong and broken, and powerful in her brokenness. Collins’s image of a woman’s perspective is not, admittedly, as effortless as Moira Young’s in Blood Red Road, but its deliberateness has its own value.

It is not an accident that the story shows Katniss’s emotional growth and that Peeta, as a more emotionally whole person, facilitates her emotional growth. It is not an accident that the story does not discuss the effect Katniss has on the erectness of Peeta’s and Gale’s penises. The first is not an accident because in reality, men do not have to be the emotional cowards that the stories I’ve linked to above make them out to be. Masculinity does not have to mean emotional cowardice. The second is not an accident because the story is not from Peeta and Gale’s perspectives. Despite widespread rumors to the contrary, it is my experience that women pretty seldom think about their effect on men’s penises. Hopefully, we never think of our primary purpose in life, in the way so many stories think of it, as making penises erect. Hopefully, we never think of ourselves as gadgets that are super fun for other people.

There are so many reasons I love The Hunger Games series, and all of this is one I wouldn’t have initially even thought to say. I saw this Eleanor Roosevelt quote earlier this month, and it said, “It is better to light one small candle than to curse the darkness.” I think The Hunger Games is a candle in the overall dark narrative of girls’ perspective on life. Yes, it is also a poignant critique of reality TV and Western callousness about the catastrophes caused by industrialization in the developing world, but that, too, resonates with me in many ways because of its remarkably feminine voice. It absolutely makes sense to me that this book is not for everyone because of its violence, but I still think that it is objectively important because it shows a perspective that seems authentically feminine to me – that talks like a girl, not like a sexy, fancy gadget. I’m not saying that in my opinion girls don’t or shouldn’t ever think about being sexy or erect penises, I’m just saying that it is my experience that we think and care about many, many more things than penises, clean houses, and food, and very, very few stories are willing to tell you about that. The Hunger Games is one that does, and it does so in way that is beautiful and important.
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,921 reviews290k followers
December 5, 2013

It seems weird that I never reviewed The Hunger Games . I don't know why I didn't when it was a series that completely took over my life for a short while. But recently I've been thinking about posting something in this review space and after just watching the second film (which I think was amazing and better than the first), now seems like as good a time as any to talk about why I love Katniss and nearly everything about this series.

I gave this book four stars back in 2011 and I'm going to leave that rating as it is because it's an indicator of my thoughts at the time (though they slightly differ now) - thoughts which were influenced by having just finished the fantastic, horrifying, brutal and unforgettable Battle Royale manga series. I don't think it was the best time for myself and Katniss to find one another when I had so much beautiful insanity to compare the book to, but it still managed to have such an effect on me that I instantly told every friend and family member to read it. Coming back to this now after having spent the last couple of years being bombarded with dystopian YA, I appreciate what Collins has achieved a whole lot more.

I appreciate the strength of Katniss as a heroine who commands our attention and holds our love whilst still being what some would consider unlikable; I appreciate the balance of beauty and horror that Collins delivers on every page, treating us constantly to both the darkest despair and rays of hope; and I also - amazingly - appreciate the love triangle. Love triangles seem to have chased me and hunted me down with every YA read I picked up over the last two or three years - my dislike for romance instantly becoming doubled by the introduction of yet another boy with beautiful eyes. But Katniss, Peeta and Gale worked for me. They convinced me, held my interest and made me cry. The love triangle worked because it's outcome wasn't obvious, because we all wondered and hoped and worried. Because, either way, I was always going to be half happy and half sad.

Katniss still remains for me everything that a female protagonist should be. Or a female hero, at least. She fights for the ones she loves, she's brave and doesn't need to be saved. But neither is she a one-dimensional smiling poster-version of a heroine. She falls, she fails, people get hurt because of her and she has to live with that. We love her and yet she's antisocial, awkward and moody. She loves other people with all her heart but she's not much of a team player. In short: she's a complex portrait of a young woman that doesn't fall into any neatly defined boxes or categories. Now, perhaps, authors have since tried to recreate her. But she's still one of the first and best.

I know another review of this book isn't needed. I know you've all probably read it anyway. Or never will. But this isn't really for anyone else; it's a reminder to myself of why this book deserves its hype and why I need to remember to come back to it again and again between the new (and hopefully amazing) YA books I'll be reading in the future.
Profile Image for ~Calliope~.
228 reviews350 followers
January 31, 2023
"I don't know how to say it exactly. Only...I want to die as myself. I don't want them to change me in there. Turn me into some kind of monster that I'm not. I keep wishing I could think of a way to...to show the Capitol that they don't own me. That I'm more than just a piece in their Games."



“You have a... remarkable memory."
"I remember everything about you. You're the one who wasn't paying attention.”



So, I really really liked this book!! Of course, I loved Peeta!How can I not? He is perfect!


But Katniss? Why?? She is so strong and bad-ass but she always misunderstands Peeta! It's so obvious that he loves her but she is in denial! She is so stupid!! And when she realizes his feelings, she just hurt him! Congrats!


4 stars because of Katniss' stupidity!


Let's start from the beginning!

What is Hunger Games?
Every year, one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 were selected from each of the twelve districts as tributes, who train for a week and then are sent into an arena to fight to the death.Only one tribute can win the games. This competition is showed to television to be seen by all citizens.

So, Katniss' little sister, Prim, is selected for the games, but Katniss took her place to save her.
"I volunteer! I volunteer as tribute!"

The boy who was chosen to participate was Peeta Mellark, a boy who Katniss knew because she saved her from starvation and give her some bread as a result his mother beat him!


------------------------------------------------

------------------------------------------------

1) I loved Peeta! He protected her but I will admit she protected him as well! She risked her life to get the medicine needed to heal his leg. But how can she not see that he is madly in love with her? I loved it when he told her about her singing for the music class, that's when Peeta realized he was in love with her when he saw that the birds were listening like they did for her father.
“No, it happened. And right when your song ended, I knew - just like your mother - I was a goner," Peeta says.”



2)I think she has feelings for him deep down! Very deep.
“I don't want to lose the boy with the bread.”

Sometimes when she kissed Peeta she felt guilty because of Gale! Why????He is her best friend! At the beginning, she said that she never saw him that way and now what? She is confusing me.
Please, not love triangle again!!I liked Gale but no!


3)Curiously, I liked Haymitch! He won the Hunger Games of his time. He is also Katniss' and Peeta's mentor. It seems at first that he doesn't like Katniss very much but at the Hunger Games he helped her more than he helped Peeta.
“Here's some advice. Stay alive.”



4)I also liked Cinna, their stylist. He always supported her in his way.


5)Rue! She was the 12-year-old female tribute from District 11. I really liked that Katniss allied with Rue. They were amazing together. But Rue died.

I understand only one can win( our case two) but I felt so sad when she died. Not only her though. A lot innocent kids die because of the Capitol. It's not fair.


6)In the half of the games, it was announced that two tributes from the same district can win. So katniss and Peeta can be allies. But when all the other tributes died it was announced that the rule they said early has been canceled. I was so angry! They did it on purpose. Assholes!!!


7)When they announced it, Katniss aimed her bow at Peeta when she sees he has picked up a weapon, but he throw it into the lake. She is so stupid. He didn't want to fight her and she thought that he could kill her.


8)I was scared when Peeta and Katniss threaten to commit double suicide so there will be no winner! But it was a trick. Thankfully, that trick worked and both PEETA AND KATNISS WERE WINNERS!


9)And the ending! Peeta discovers that Katniss was mostly acting during the games about the feelings. He was so heartbroken! My baby!
“You here to finish me off, Sweetheart?”



P.S. I haven't seen the movie yet!
Profile Image for elissa.
2,069 reviews139 followers
January 26, 2021
I LOVE THIS BOOK! I've said to a few people that if I wasn't married, I'd have to marry this book. :) I read the 400 page ARC in a less-than-24-hour time period (so quickly that it was never even on my "currently reading" shelf), which I've only done before with HP books, and I've just officially put the first book on my 2008 favorites shelf. I feel pretty safe in saying that if this isn't still my favorite book of the year when next January rolls around, that I'll eat a hat. As soon as I finished reading it, I turned around and read it a 2nd time, which I've never done before in my life. I loved all of Collins' GREGOR books, and think she's a wonderful writer, but she's ratcheted it up to another level with this one. Even though it's the first in a trilogy, this one definitely stands alone, and I'm not sure how she can keep it up for another 2 books, but I suppose it's possible (think: THE GIVER, although I loved GATHERING BLUE, and liked THE MESSENGER--HUNGER GAMES is much more brutal than THE GIVER, though). It's got some very meaty issues to chew on, not the least of which is reality TV taken to extremes. There's a chaste and unresolved romance (think: TWILIGHT, but I don't think I will make it past the first in that series--HUNGER GAMES has much more action, more of a plot, lots of well-developed secondary characters, as well as extremely likeable main characters. I will miss Katniss until I can read about her again.). What more could you possibly ask for out of a book? It doesn't actually come out until October 2008, but if you can get your hands on an ARC, definitely do! I think that the violence in this will be easier for kids to take, since they probably won't see it quite as clearly as an adult will. None of it is particularly graphic, but it is definitely brutal. This is on the edge of too dark for me, which is my favorite kind of book. There aren't many writers who can push it right to the edge for me without going over (Zusak comes to mind immediately), but Collins is definitely one of them. Another book that I loved, and think of to compare this to is HOUSE OF THE SCORPION, but that fell apart slightly at the end for me. HUNGER GAMES didn't lack anything at all for me. OK, I'll stop gushing. I may have to re-write this review when I get some perspective. (2012: Obviously, I never did rewrite it, and this is my most-"liked" review :)

My 10 1/2 yr old son asked to read this with me, so I read it for the 3rd time with him in Oct 2008. Still my definite favorite book of the year, but all the typos in the finished book were pretty disappointing. Still, it's my choice for just about any award out there, come January, including the JHUNT.

Update May 2009: I am dying because the CATCHING FIRE ARC has just been released, and people are saying it's at least as good at HG. I've had 2 teenaged boys at my library read this on my recommendation, and both of them came back asking me for more books like it (really there isn't anything). One of them has pre-ordered CATCHING FIRE on Amazon (updated to say that I worked in a fairly disadvantaged neighborhood in DC at the time, so that was not a usual occurrence).

May-June 2011: I'm reading this for the 4th time, with my younger son, who's finishing up 5th grade. Still as good as ever!! Can't wait for the movie!!

Update 2012: Between them, HG and CATCHING FIRE were the pinnacle of my 20-yr career as a YA librarian! I've seen the movie twice so far, and definitely liked it better the 2nd time, when it didn't have to try to be my favorite book. :)

Update 2020: It's been 9 years since I last read this, but I've never listened to the audiobook, so I decided that having it read to me would be a good activity during the covid-19 pandemic. STILL as good as ever, and the odds will forever be in its favor.
Profile Image for Colleen Venable.
Author 30 books355 followers
July 25, 2008
Fantastically Written? Ooooh yeah! Compelling? Yup! Super Quick Read? Most definitely! Original? Um...well *shuffles feet, since I seem to be a rare non-five star-er* not original at all really....

Man, I wish someone on my friends list here has also read Battle Royale and this book! The Hunger Games WAS pretty fantastic, hence the four stars (though I would have given 3 1/2 if the choice was available.) I ate it up, shouting into other rooms and offices that I was going to be shoving the book into their hands as soon as I was done, but as it went on desha vu was a little too common for me. I know there are major story types out there, ones that are repeated over and over again. Shakespeare retold 200 different ways. The bible reinterpreted to 2,000,000 varieties of tales....but when it comes to YA dystopia, which is by far my favorite genre of any book, originality is one of my main ways I judge a book. FEED felt utterly original. The world of UGLIES felt new. LITTLE BROTHER was just plain amazing. If it's going to be about "the future" we don't know about, make it original. In my mind dystopia novels survive on "idea" more than "excecution" and while the execution of this was beautiful, the idea was hardly new.

While I have a really good feeling Collins never read, or maybe even heard of, Battle Royale, The Hunger Games was 90% the plot of Battle Royal, minus the guns, the extra blood, the ability to get to know all the other players. In Battle Royal (short explanation of BR plot: 40 students put on island forced to kill each other and winner is set for life and put on TV etc...), the main focus is a love story between two students trapped in the game, two students bonding together with no real urge to kill others...one of whom had a crush on the other forever and it is only revealed during the game. There are so many other similarities, from the ways the gamemakers manipulate, to the ways the media encourages, to one character having a fever and the other taking care of them with soup. There are even "career" battle royal players. In BR you see the emotions before and after someone is killed, their last thoughts, the feeling of the person who killed. It's actually really beautiful the way it is done, and so believable that put in an arena teens WOULD turn into savages. In The Hunger Games, yes the main characters were fantastic, and many of the lesser as well, but Foxface is only Foxface, and the Careers are never more than random 1-dimensional bad guys.

The Hunger Games was very Battle Royale, very The Long Walk (Richard Bachman book), and very much current reality shows. I am not saying it wasn't a GREAT read, I'm just saying it shouldn't shake the publishing earth the way I am pretty sure it is going to. I anticipate this is the next Twilight series people are going to gush over. In a few years we'll all be hosting Hunger Games final book parties. I'll be amongst the attendees I'm sure.

Also in terms of female main characters, Katiniss may surpass Bella in me wanting to shake sense into a character. Talk about a smart girl being utterly clueless!

Yes, it was great, but eh, maybe I'm just bitter because I think BR is the better book of the two and while Hunger Games will get tons of praise and likely a rather deserved award or two, BR will continue to be banned in many libraries. Amazing what subtracting guns can do to a story. Suddenly it doesn't feel as violent, but rather is more reminiscent of stories we heard growing up. The number of swords and arrow deaths in traditional fairytales is nothing to freak out about, but if bullets are flying, it will give "too many ideas" to teens and therefore must be dubbed an adult book.

I'm pretty sure if I hadn't read BR just a few months back this exeedingly long review would have been just as long only instead of a rant it would have just been one long squeeeeeal of delight over how much I loved the book.




Original Comment: Peer pressure, peer pressure, peer pressure. Geez guys! Alright, alright I'll read it!
Profile Image for Betsy.
Author 8 books2,685 followers
June 27, 2008
Clearly Gregor was merely the prelude. Suzanne Collins, you’ve been holding out on us, missy. As an author we were accustomed to your fun adventures involving a boy, his sister, and a world beneath our world. I think it's fair to say that we weren’t really expecting something like The Hunger Games. At least I wasn’t. But reading it gave me a horribly familiar feeling. There is a certain strain of book that can hypnotize you into believing that you are in another time and place roughly 2.3 seconds after you put that book down. Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer could convince me that there were simply not enough canned goods in my home. And The Hunger Games? Well as I walked down the street I was under the disctinc impression that there were hidden cameras everywhere, charting my progress home. Collins has written a book that is exciting, poignant, thoughtful, and breathtaking by turns. It ascends to the highest forms of the science fiction genre and will create all new fans for the writer. One of the best books of the 2008 year.

Life in District 12 isn’t easy for Katniss and her family. Ever since her father died the girl has spent her time saving her mother and little sister Prim from starvation by hunting on forbidden land. But worst of all is reaping day. Once a year the government chooses two children from each of the twelve districts to compete against one another in a live and televised reality show. Twenty-four kids and teens enter, and only one survives. When Prim's name is called, Katniss exchanges herself without hesitation to compete alongside the baker’s boy Peeta. To survive in this game you need to win the heart of your audience, and so District 12’s trainers come up with a plan. Why not make it as if Peeta and Katniss were in love with one another? But in a game where only one person can live, Katniss will have to use all her brains, wits, and instincts to determine who to trust and how to outwit the game's creators.

I described the plot of this book to my husband, particularly the part where Katniss and Peeta fake being in love to gain the audience’s approval and the very first thing he said was, “Oh! That’s the plot of They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?" Then I mentioned that it took place in the future and that government leaders set up teenagers to fight one another to the death and he said, "Battle Royale”. So sure, there are parts of this plot that have been done before. You could say it's The Game meets Spartacus with some Survivor thrown in for spice. But that’s not what makes a book good or bad, is it? Some of the greatest works of literature out there, regardless of the readerships' age, comes about when an author takes overdone or familiar themes and then makes them entirely new through the brilliance of their own writing. Harry Potter wouldn’t have been any great shakes if it weren’t for Rowling’s storytelling. Similarly, Collins takes ideas that have certainly seen the light of day before and concocts an amazingly addictive text. About the time you get to the fifth chapter that ends with a sentence that forces you to read on, you’re scratching your head wondering how the heck she DOES that.

Your story often rests on the shoulders of the protagonist. Is this a believable character? Do you root for him or her? Because basically it is a very hard thing to create a “good” person on the page that your reader is going to fall in love with. Because we readers know that we are flawed, we are often inclined to side with the similarly flawed people we meet between a book’s covers. Katniss, on the other hand, is so good in so many ways. She sacrifices herself for her sister. She tries to save people in the game. But there’s almost a jock mentality to her too. Katniss can figure out the puzzles and problems in the game, but when it comes to emotional complexity she’s sometimes up a tree. Most remarkable to me was the fact that Katniss could walk around, oblivious to romance, and not bug me. Seriously, nothing gets under my skin faster than heroines who can’t see that their fellow fellas are jonesing for them. You just want to bonk the ladies upside the head with a brick or something. The different here is maybe the fact that since Katniss knows that Peeta has to play a part, she uses that excuse (however unconsciously) to justify his seeming affection for her. Thems smart writing.

Oh! And did I mention the dialogue at all? The humor? Yep, there’s humor. We’re talking about a story where adolescents hunger for blood, and Katniss is getting in lines about her trainers like, “And then, because it’s Effie and she’s apparently required by law to say something awful...” Good stuff. The words pop off the page. And then there’s the fact that we’re dealing with a dystopian novel where the author has somehow managed to create a believable future. No faux slang here, or casual references to extinct dolphins. There are some animals that were scientifically altered, but you can’t have a future without a couple cool details like that, right?

In general, this book throws a big fat wrench into the boy book/girl book view of child/teen literature. People love to characterize books by gender. It stars a boy? Boy book. A girl? Girl book. Now take a long lengthy look at the first book in the Hunger Games Trilogy. It stars a girl... and a boy too. There’s a lot of hunting, fighting, and survival... and a lot of romance, kisses, and cool outfits. There’s strategy, the world’s most fabulous fashion designer, weapons and a girl who knows how to fight. This is not a book that quietly slots into our preconceived stereotypes. And you know what happens to books that span genders? They sell very well indeed. That is, if you can get both boys and girls to read them.

The age range? Well, for most of this story I would have said ten and up. I mean, yeah the basic premise is that a lot of teenagers go around killing one another, and sure there’s some romance to deal with, but none of it really seems inappropriate... until a final death scene appears in the book. I won’t give any details, but suffice it to say it is gruesome. There are definite horror elements to it as well, so with that in mind I am upping my recommendation to 12 and up. I’m sure that there are 10-year-olds out there who’ve seen much worse stuff on cable, just as there are 12-year-olds who’ll freak out ten pages in. Still, I’m more comfortable recommending it for the older kids rather than the younger. You'll see why.

It occurs to me that there has never been a quintessential futuristic gladiator book for kids. That is undoubtedly the roughest term you can give this book. Now I’m not a person who cries easily when she reads something, particularly something for kids. Yet as I was taking a train to Long Island I found myself tearing up over significant parts of this story. It’s good. And it’s so ridiculous that a work of science fiction like this could even be so good. You think of futuristic arena tales and your mind instantly sinks to the lowest common denominator. What Collins has done here is set up a series that will sink its teeth into readers. The future of this book will go one of two ways. Either it will remain an unappreciated cult classic for years to come or it will be fully appreciated right from the start and lauded. My money lies with the latter. A contender in its own right.

Ages 12 and up.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for jessica.
2,479 reviews29.7k followers
September 21, 2019
personal anecdote - the first time i heard of this book was when i was 17. i was at work (i was a hostess at a restaurant in a mall) and my manager came up to me, gave me $20 and asked me to run to B&N to buy her a copy before they closed. she wanted me to do it because she said it 'would look better if a teenager bought it.'

i havent really thought about that day since but, since my time on goodreads, i cant believe how much shaming i see for adults who read books that are targeted for YA or children. what a shame it is that adults feel embarrassed to buy a book simply because its promoted as a story for teenagers!

as i reread this, 10 years later, i am even more convinced that people should read whatever they want to read and not feel bad for enjoying what they enjoy!

also, gale totally deserves better. i thought it then and i still think it now. my boy is the true hero of this story.

and that has been your PSA for the day!

5 stars
Profile Image for Manny.
Author 28 books13.4k followers
Want to read
November 17, 2015
SOME BOOKS I ALREADY OWN WHICH I PLAN TO FINISH BEFORE BUYING THE HUNGER GAMES

John Lanchester, Mr. Phillips
Margaret Atwood, Oryx and Crake
Steven Weinberg, The First Three Minutes
Jean-Jacques Sempé, Le Petit Nicolas
Merritt Ruhlen, The Origin of Language
Pernilla Stalfelt, Le petit livre de caca
Hubert Reeves, L'univers expliqué à mes petits-enfants
Gustave Flaubert, Trois Contes
Dominique Lambert, Un Atome D'Univers
Jean-Pierre Luminet, L'Invention du Big Bang
Francis Collins, The Language of God
Ben Marcus, The Flame Alphabet
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Lili est harcelée à l'école
Michel Brice, Love-Téléphone
C.M. Kornbluth/Jordan Park, Valerie
Snedwick P. Philebius, clownfucker
Troy NeNuthe, Troy DeNuthe's World of Ice Cubes
Carroll Quigley, Tragedy and Hope: A History of the World in Our Time
Ian McEwan, Solar
Dominique Lambert, L'itinéraire spirituel de Georges Lemaître
Gilles Brulet, haïku, mon nounours
Helge Kragh, Cosmology and Controversy
Simon Singh, Big Bang
Alison Bechdel, Invasion of the Dykes to Watch Out For
Arthur Koestler, The Sleepwalkers
Bertrand Russell, Religion and Science
Matthew Hurley, Daniel Dennett and Reginald Adams, Inside Jokes
Zep, Titeuf, Tome 3: Ça épate les filles
Alan Guth, The Inflationary Universe
Helge Kragh, Higher Speculations
Hubert Reeves, La première seconde
Jim Holt, Why Does the World Exist? An Existential Detective Story
Stephen Hawking, The Grand Design
John Lennox, God and Stephen Hawking
Immanuel Kant, Universal Natural History
Pierre Probst, Pouf le chaton bleu
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max et Koffi sont copains
Thomas Wengelewski, 99 Classic Movies for People in a Hurry
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max décide de faire des efforts
Roger Hahn, Le système du monde
A.D. White, A History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom
Lars Saabye Christensen, Beatles
Tomi Ungerer, Les Chats
Paul Steinhardt and Neil Turok, Endless Universe
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max adore jouer
Tomi Ungerer, Orlando
William Paley, Natural Theology
René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo, Asterix chez les Helvètes
François Lelord, Le Voyage d'Hector ou la recherche du bonheur
Helge Kragh, Matter and Spirit in the Universe
Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species
C.S. Lewis, Miracles
M.J. Nicholls, A Postmodern Belch
Fred Hoyle, The Origin of the Universe and the Origin of Religion
Anna Benson, C
Alan Lightman and Roberta Brawer, Origins
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max et Lili ont des pouvoirs magiques
Fabrice Bonvin, OVNIS: Les agents du changement
Fred Hoyle, Frontiers of Astronomy
Miles Kington, Let's Parler Franglais Again!
Tristran Davies, Wallace & Gromit: The Lost Slipper and the Curse of the Ramsbottoms
Herman Bondi, Cosmology
Leonard Susskind, The Cosmic Landscape
James Joyce, Ulysses
Harry Blamires, The Bloomsday Book: A Guide through Joyce's Ulysses
David B. Lentz, Bloomsday: The Bostoniad
George Gamow, One, Two, Three... Infinity
Richard Swinburne, Is There a God?
Sylvia Day, Bared to You
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max se fait insulter à la récré
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max veut etre délégué de la classe
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Nina a été adoptée
Heather Busch and Burton Silver, Why Cats Paint
Tomi Ungerer, The Three Robbers
Pierre-Simon Laplace, Exposition du système du monde
Paul Davies, God and the New Physics
Bill Bryson, A Short History of Nearly Everything
Norman Lindsay, The Magic Pudding
Philipp Koehn, Statistical Machine Translation
Sean Carroll, From Eternity to Here
E. Nesbit, The Story of the Amulet
Paul Davies, The Mind of God
Edward Eager, Half Magic
Brian Clegg, Before the Big Bang
Mary Leunig, A Piece of Cake
Guy de Maupassant, Pierre et Jean
Thomas Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions
Lucretius, On the Nature of Things
Olga Grushin, The Dream Life of Sukhanov
E.W. Barnes, Scientific Theory and Religion
William Shakespeare, Pericles, Prince of Tyre
Rudy Rucker, Mathenauts
Philip Pullman, The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ
Mikael Niemi, Populärmusik från Vittula
Albert Einstein, The Meaning of Relativity
Patrick Lapeyre, La vie est brève et le désir sans fin
Iain M. Banks, Matter
Lee Smolin, Time Reborn
Guus Kuijer, Het boek van alle dingen
Abraham Pais, Subtle Is the Lord: The Science and the Life of Albert Einstein
Robert Jastrow, God and the Astronomers
Comtesse de Segur, Ourson
George Gamow, Thirty Years that Shook Physics
Terry Pratchett, The Last Continent
Helge Kragh, An Introduction to the Historiography of Science
Heinrich Hoffmann, Der Struwwelpeter
Italo Calvino, Si par une nuit d'hiver un voyageur
Tove Jansson, Komet im Mumintal
William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience
Richard Feynman, The Character of Physical Law
Sir Thomas Heath, Aristarchus of Samos
Otto Neugebauer, The Exact Sciences in Antiquity
Carlo Rovelli, The First Scientist: Anaximander and his Legacy
Arthur Berry, A Short History of Astronomy
David Foenkinos, La délicatesse
David Wallace, The Emergent Multiverse
Peter Byrne, The Many Worlds of Hugh Everett III
Kevin Werbach, For the Win
Galileo Galilei, Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems
Alexander Unzicker and Sheilla Jones, Bankrupting Science
Ian Bogost, How to Do Things with Videogames
Pierre Pevel, Les Lames du Cardinal
Cordelia Fine, Delusions of Gender
Victor Stenger, God: The Failed Hypothesis
David Berlinski, The Devil's Delusion
Agniya Barto, Игрушки
Somenath Mithra, Science and Mankind
Thomas Lewis, Fari Amini and Richard Lannon, A General Theory of Love
Jim Baggott, Farewell to Reality
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max n'aime pas lire
François Lelord, Hector et les secrets de l'amour
Richard Burton, The Arabian Nights
Richard Panek, The 4% Universe
George Smoot, Wrinkles in Time
Victor Stenger, The Fallacy of Fine-Tuning
Martin Rowson, F*uck
Hjalmar Söderberg, Doktor Glas
Richard Dawkins, The Greatest Show on Earth
G.R. Reader, Off-Topic
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Lili veur faire une boum
Ogden Nash, Custard and Company
Louis Gautier-Vignal,
John Updike, Roger's Version
Hermann Weyl, Philosophy of Mathematics and Natural Science
Jean-Marie Bruson, Musée Carnavelet
Andri Pol, Inside CERN
Mark J. Solomon, On Computer Simulated Universes
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Lili veut être une star
Immanuel Kant, Critique of Pure Reason
Jules Verne, Paris au XXe siècle
Åsa Larsson, Svart Stig
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Max et Lili en ont marre de se dépêcher
Julia Herschensohn and Martha Young-Scholten, The Cambridge Handbook of Second Language Acquisition
Capt. W.E. Johns, Biggles in Australia
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Der Kleine Prinz
Richard C. Tolman, Relativity, Thermodynamics and Cosmology
P.J.E. Peebles, Physical Cosmology
Alice Munro, Dear Life
Jim Baggott, Higgs
Heather Amery, First Thousand Words in German
David Deutsch, The Fabric of Reality
Max Tegmark, Our Mathematical Universe
Shan Sa, La joueuse de go
Mark J. Solomon, The Evolution of Simulated Universes
Hermann Weyl, Symmetry
Ted Nield, Incoming!
Anita Loos, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
Stuart A. Kauffman, At Home in the Universe
Gilbert Adair, The Act of Roger Murgatroyd
Nigel Calder, Violent Universe
Iris Fry, The Emergence of Life on Earth
Fred Hoyle, Home is Where the Wind Blows
Jane Gregory, Fred Hoyle's Universe
Matty Millard, In That Other Dimension
Katherine Freese, The Cosmic Cocktail
Roland Omnès, Philosophie de la science contemporaine
Pierre Cormon, Le traître
Philip K. Dick, Clans of the Alphane Moon
Jacques Monod, Le hasard et la necessité
Plato, Charmides
Philip K. Dick, The Ganymede Takeover
George Andrey, L'histoire de la Suisse pour les nuls (tome 1)
Plato, Lysis
Plato, Laches
Plato, Protagoras
Maxine Eskenazi, Crowdsourcing for Speech Processing
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Lili trouve sa maîtresse méchante
Dominique de Saint-Mars, Lili se dispute avec son frère
Plato, Euthydemus
Karl Ove Knausgård Min kamp 1
Grégoire Delacourt, La première chose qu'on regarde
David S. Atkinson, The Garden of Good and Evil Pancakes
Karl Ove Knausgård Min kamp 2
Michael Frayn, The Human Touch
Thomas Nagel, Mind and Cosmos
Rose Lagencrantz, Tjejtjusaren och de tre Helenorna
Francesco Marciuliano, I Could Pee on This: And Other Poems by Cats
Karl Ove Knausgård Min kamp 3
Frans G. Bengtsson Röde Orm
Karl Ove Knausgård Min kamp 4
P.J.E. Peebles, Principles of Physical Cosmology
Brian Clegg, Gravity
Karl Ove Knausgård Min kamp 5
Daniel Dennett, Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon
Harold J. Morowitz, The Emergence of Everything: How the World Became Complex
Curtis White, The Science Delusion
Leonard Susskind and George Hrabovsky, Classical Mechanics: The Theoretical Minimum
John Sladek, The New Apocrypha
Jesse Kraai, Lisa: A Chess Novel
Randall Munroe, What If?
Alice Munro, Runaway
Richard Rorty, Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature
Massimo Pigliucci, Philosophy of Pseudoscience: Reconsidering the Demarcation Problem
Karl Ove Knausgård, Min kamp 6
Leonard Susskind and Art Friedman, Quantum Mechanics: The Theoretical Minimum
John C. Whitcomb and Henry M. Morris, The Genesis Flood
David Hume, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding
David Hume, An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals
Trevor Johnston and Adam Schembri, Australian Sign Language
Jens Bjørneboe, Bestialitetens historie
Michel Brice, L'exécutrice
Robert Oerter, The Theory of Almost Everything
Stella Rimington, The Geneva Trap
Scott K. Liddell, Grammar, Gesture and Meaning in American Sign Language
Zachary Treisman, A Young Person's Guide to the Hopf Fibration
Auguste Dick, Emmy Noether, 1883-1935
Mary Beard, Confronting the Classics
Madeleine Bourdouxhe, La femme de Gilles
Michel Houellebecq, Soumission
Alan Lightman, Einstein's Dreams
Roberto Mangabeira Unger and Lee Smolin, The Singular Universe and the Reality of Time
Charb and Zineb, La vie de Mahomet
Philippe Geluck, Le Chat, tome I
Philippe Geluck, Le Chat, tome II
Philippe Geluck, Le Chat, tome VII
Philippe Geluck, Le Chat, tome VIII
Philippe Geluck, Le Chat, tome IX
Philippe Geluck, Le Chat, tome XVI
Hjalmar Söderberg, Den Alvarsamma Leken
Marion Fayolle, Les coquins
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, El Principito
Marjane Satrapi, Persépolis Integral
Dwight E. Neuenschwander Emmy Noether's Wonderful Theorem
Georges Simenon, Les fiançailles de M. Hire
Pierre Larousse, Femme
Rebecca Goldstein, Plato at the Googleplex
Donal O'Shea, The Poincaré Conjecture
Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway, Merchants of Doubt
Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt, Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran
Agnar Mykle, Lasso rundt fru Luna
Peter Woit, Quantum Theory, Groups and Representations: An Introduction
Agnar Mykle, Sangen om den røde rubin
Alan Lightman, The Accidental Universe
Plato, The Dialogues
Ramamurti Shankar, Principles of Quantum Mechanics
Harold McGee, On Food and Cooking
Charles Babcock, Management Strategies for the Cloud Revolution
Hermann Weyl, Theory of Groups and Quantum Mechanics
George Andrey, L'histoire de la Suisse pour les nuls (tome 2)

But I imagine I'll get to it in due course. I just don't see what the rush is.
Profile Image for Lisa of Troy.
376 reviews2,810 followers
December 5, 2022
Already Want to Read This Again……

Wow! That was amazing!

Yes, yes. I’ve already seen the movie, but the book is so much better.

In The Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen is scraping by, just trying to make her daily living, hunting by her bow in the forest to feed her family. Every year, The Capitol requires every district to offer up one boy and one girl as tributes. The tributes fight each other to the death until only one person survives. This fight is called The Hunger Games.

The day of the Reaping finally comes. This is the day where the one boy and one girl are selected. Unfortunately, Prim, Katniss’s younger sister is selected. In an incredible act of bravery, Katniss volunteers to take her sister’s place. Will Katniss make it through The Hunger Games?

First of all, the narrator on this was perfect. She even did the accent for the Capitol people, and she sang the song.

Second, The Hunger Games is a perfect dystopian novel. It has different dresses and customs, but it isn’t overkill or confusing.

There are also many parallels to today’s society. For example, why do the citizens allow The Hunger Games? Because they don’t believe that their children will be selected. How many people believe that they will never be unemployed, never get divorced, never become seriously ill or injured? People like betting on themselves. But we, as a society, aren’t we better off if we made sure that there were strong safety nets in place for those who happen on hard times?

In The Hunger Games, all is also not equal. The tributes can have sponsors who rain down much needed supplies on the tributes. We like to think that everyone has an equal opportunity. But is that really the case when the rich can purchase private ACT/SAT tutors for their children? What about those who start their first job and have strong allies and mentors from day one?

But I also loved this book, because it had many small acts of kindness.

“Kind people have a way of working their way inside me and rooting there.” – The Hunger Games

With cruelty becoming commonplace, kindness stands out. When District 11 came together, I racked my brain trying to remember the last time that we, as a society, came together for a cause, and I came up short. I think the world is hungry for a rallying cry, a cause that we can all fight together for. What would the world be like if the cruelty was replaced by kindness? Full disclosure: may have cried just a little bit reading this.

Looking forward to the next book in the series….

- The Girl On Fire

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Profile Image for NickReads.
461 reviews1,208 followers
June 9, 2020
The book that got me into reading.
Profile Image for Elle (ellexamines).
1,079 reviews17.2k followers
January 14, 2020
spoilers but do y’all remember that scene in book two where all of the victors are being interviewed and keep saying shit that cuts right to the capitol’s bone, all really purposefully overdramatic, and then right after Katniss gets up and that shit with the Dress happens (which she instantly knows is a life sacrifice one of her only friends is making for her) Peeta gets up on that stage and makes a normal speech and then ends it with “I’d be fine, if it weren’t for the baby” like when is literature ever going to reach those peaks of bad bitch energy ever again

I think this series is so fascinating in that it basically spurred an entire genre of sort-of-okay YA dystopians and then a lot of really bad YA dystopians, and it gets put a lot into that category. but... this book doesn’t have any of those same problems that so plagued YA dystopian fiction.

The love triangle being pointless is quite literally the point; Gale and Peeta are meant to represent the opposite sides of war (something a certain plot point in book three really drives home). Katniss is frankly never romantically interested in either for almost all of books one and two; she grows to care about Peeta in the general sense, not just the romantic sense. The eventual romance works for Katniss because it is safe for her.

(What I’m saying is this was tenderness.)

I more think this series is interesting in how it talks about the nature of power and the nature of uprising. The uprising, as a whole, is an upswelling of the people, a realization that there is strength in numbers. Yet some of the most revolutionary actions of this series are individual — it takes Katniss’ desire to save her sister to start a war, Katniss’ love for little Rue to create horror, Cinna’s willingness to sacrifice his life to create a symbol. Even during war, the individual lives of characters like Joanna and Haymitch and Finnick matter. They matter to the narrative, and thus they matter to us too.



Katniss Everdeen is still a deeply revolutionary heroine not only in that she’s written to be fairly gender non-conforming but also in that she is outwardly cold to all but her very few favorite people, and the narrative does not see fit to punish her for it, but to empathize with her and allow her to grow naturally in small ways. Her journey is not in becoming a Nice Person but in self-actualization. That is not a journey female characters are ever ever ever allowed to take and is arguably still something new.

I almost want to case study this. It’s a similar dynamic to Lord of the Rings being blamed for the general problems of late-1900s fantasy... but worse, because criticism of the YA dystopian genre so often fell into somewhat misogynistic areas, and I don’t think there’s any point in denying that The Hunger Games, due to having an image as Something Young Women Enjoyed™️, received far more criticism than its equivalents in other genres.

It's crazy that the first big ya dystopia is the best ya dystopia and one of the best series of all time, but this one is truly a classic and remains so incredible. Thank you to Katniss Everdeen for being one of the most interesting characters ever written and to this book for having such a dynamic story.

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—————
🔍TOP THREE REASONS TO READ THG

1. It's relevant to our world. The parallels to our own society are so amazingly drawn, and the worldbuilding so good, that I'm not surprised this book was the one that broke through.
2. Dramatic tension. Tell me you weren't on the edge of your seat every moment of this book. You're lying. Katniss' struggle to survive on her own is compelling and twisty. Every moment is filled with fear and tension.
3. The characters are amazing. Katniss Everdeen is one of the best developed, most intriguing protagonists ever written. She's badass and she's selfish and she takes no shit. In the end, I think that's what made this series so fantastic and popular.
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,568 reviews55.6k followers
August 10, 2021
The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games #1), Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games is a 2008 dystopian novel by the American writer Suzanne Collins. It is written in the voice of 16-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives in the future, post-apocalyptic nation of Panem in North America.

The Capitol, a highly advanced metropolis, exercises political control over the rest of the nation. The Hunger Games is an annual event in which one boy and one girl aged 12–18 from each of the twelve districts surrounding the Capitol are selected by lottery to compete in a televised battle to the death.

Characters: Katniss Everdeen, Peeta Mellark, Cato, Primrose Everdeen, Gale Hawthorne, Effie Trinket, Haymitch Abernathy, Cinna, President Coriolanus Snow, Rue, Octavia, Venia, Flavius, Avox girl, Marvel, Glimmer, Clove, Foxface, Thresh, Greasy Sae, Madge Undersee, Portia, Caesar Flickerman, Claudius Templesmith

عنوانها: عطش مبارزه؛ اشتعال؛ اثر: سوزان کالینز؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش: پنجم ماه آوریل سال 2014 میلادی

عنوان: عطش مبارزه - جلد نخست از سه گانه عطش مبارزه؛ اثر: سوزان کالینز؛ برگردان: شبنم سعادت؛ تهران، نشر افزار، 1389، در 408ص، شابک: 9789642433179؛ چاپ دوم 1392؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده 21م

عنوان: اشتعال؛ اثر: سوزان کالینز؛ برگردان: شبنم سعادت؛ تهران، افراز، 1391؛ در 405ص؛ شابک 9789642434336؛ چاپ دوم 1392؛ چاپ چهارم 1394؛

عنوان: هانگر گیمز؛ اثر: سوزان کالینز؛ برگردان:علی مصلح حیدرزاده؛ تهران، ویدا، 1391؛ در 256ص؛ شابک 9786002910134؛

نخستین کتاب از سه‌ گانه ی «عطش مبارزه» به شمار است و ماجرای دختری شانزده ساله است، به نام «کتنیس اِوِردین»؛ که در «مسابقات عطش مبارزه» رقابت‌هایی که بین بیست و چهار نفر (دوازده پسر و دوازده دختر دوازده تا هجده ساله)؛ هر سال به صورت رویدادی زنده، از تلویزیون در مناطق دوازده گانه ی کشور «پانم» پخش می‌شود. در مسابقات، یک پسر و یک دختر را، از هر دوازده ناحیه؛ با قید قرعه انتخاب میکنند؛ و آنها پس از نبرد با یکدیگر تا پای جان، در پایان مسابقه، تنها یک تن باید زنده بماند، و برنده اعلام شود؛ اما ...؛

شرح تصویر روی جلد کتاب: پرنده، و تیری محاط در حلقه‌ ای طلایی رنگ، با پس زمینه‌ ای سیاه است؛ همان سنجاق سینه‌ ای است، که «مج»، دختر شهردار و دوست «کتنیس»، به وی هدیه داده، در کتاب از زبان «کتنیس» می‌خوانیم: «گویی یک نفر پرنده‌ ی کوچک طلایی رنگی را ساخته، و سپس آن را به حلقه‌ ای که دور آن است وصل کرده؛ تنها نوک بال‌های پرنده، به حلقه متصل است؛ ناگهان آن را می‌شناسم، یک زاغ مقلد است.»؛ پایان نقل از کتاب

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 15/06/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 18/05/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Will Byrnes.
1,284 reviews119k followers
February 25, 2021
What was once North America has been reduced, by what we are not told. The new country, Panem (as in the “bread” part of Rome’s Bread and Circuses, or supposedly, Pan-America) is not exactly a fun place to live. A decadent Capitol rules over 12 subservient, worker districts. Katliss is a 16-year-old who lives with her depression-incapacitated mother and her 12-year-old sister, Prim, whom she loves more than anything. She lives in the coal-producing District 12, a sooty place in the former Appalachia where life expectancy is as bleak as the food ration is small. She learned hunting skills from her late father and supplements her family’s meager ration with game, hunting frequently with her 18-yr-old friend Gale.

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Suzanne Collins - from fictiondb.com

Hearkening back to ancient Greece, as a way of demonstrating its dominance over the twelve districts, every year each district must send one male and one female between the ages of 12 and 18 the Hunger Games. Contestants, or tributes, in the very Rome-centric nomenclature of the book, are selected by lottery, but one can get food for increasing the number of entries one is willing to submit. This is not necessarily a lottery you would want to win, as the Hunger Games contest is a gladiatorial battle to the death. Joining an ancient form of barbarity with a more modern version, the contest is seen by the nation on television, gussied up with all the pomp and circumstance of the World Cup, Superbowl and World Series combined, with the degrading intrusiveness of reality television.

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Primrose Everdeen gets the bad news - from Jabberjays.net

When the unlucky Prim is selected, Katliss offers to take her place, joining the muscular baker’s son, Peeta. They are transported to the Capitol, dressed up, interviewed on TV, offered training in several forms of combat and sent out there to do or die. The rest is their ordeal, which includes having to succeed not only with physical skills such as strength and agility. In addition to the need for cunning in figuring out how to best their competitors, they have to figure out how to please the television audience, among which are sponsors who might send them much needed goods during the game.

Katliss is caught not only in a brutal contest with the other tributes, but in a confusing battle with her own adolescent emotions. What are her feelings, really, for her male counterpart from District 12, Peeta, and for her hunky bff Gale back home (team Gale vs team Peeta anyone)? How can she express her rage at the operators of this horror for their inhumanity?

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Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss and Josh Hutcherson as Peeta - from ABC News

This is a fast-paced and engaging read, even for one who is waaaay past the target YA demographic. I quite enjoyed reading the book, hated putting it down. Collins offers characters one can root for, with enough inner conflict and complexity to matter, well some of them, without it being overbearing, or slowing down the story.

Ok, I liked the book. But I had a niggling concern early on. When I began reading, I wondered if there might be a political agenda at play. The “Capitol” is clearly the evil tyrant here, with the oppressed working people living in dread of their overlords. Had this story been published in the early-to-mid 20th century, one might presume that the “Capitol” stood in for the fascism of Germany, Italy or Spain, or the totalitarianism of the Soviet Union/Russia or China. However, given the political climate of the twenty-teens, in which cynical forces of the right seek at every opportunity to portray government of any sort as the personification of evil, one must wonder if the author subscribed to the notion. I confess to not having read her prior work, so lack a basis there, and the interviews with Collins I read offer no insight. So, I am not saying that this is so, just that the portrayal made me wonder. I will read more of Collins’ work and look into the subject some more outside pages she wrote, and if I find anything definitive I will update this entry.

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Jennifer Lawrence with Liam Hemsworth as Gale Hawthorne - image from RogerEbert.com

PS - Subsequent to writing the above, I read the following two Hunger Games books. I posted a review of Catching Fire in 2013, and while I did read Mockingjay I never got around to reviewing it. While I no longer feel a concern that Collins was consciously attempting to impart a stealth right-wing perspective, I still had a feeling that there was something else going on here. Thankfully, GR friend Kyra offered a link to an article in The Guardian that articulated very clearly what my innards were only able to communicate with vague visceral discomfort. Here is the link. I suggest you check it out for yourselves. Here is another perspective if the subject is of interest


=============================EXTRA STUFF

An interview on Scholastic.com

Neat bit on Theseus and the Minotaur in an SC interview in the School Library Journal. I go into this a bit in my review of Catching Fire.

The five part Time interview with Collins
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
SC’s site
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Nilesh Kashyap.
22 reviews45 followers
December 4, 2013
My ‘The Hunger Games’ week
23rd march- movie is released
24th march- I read this review and end up watching excellent trailers, Later I downloaded the excerpt and kind of liked the first chapter
25th march- I am a proud owner of the book. Yay!
26th to 27th march- I started reading the book
This is how I thought it would go:
Once I would start reading it, I would just be sucked into it and finish the book remaining awake until early hours of morning, with my bloodshot red eyes.
This is how it went:
I started it and was immediately sucked into the book but then around midway I started losing interest. I fell asleep and had horrible dream (credit to graphic violence). Next morning I finished it owning to its fast pace.
This book is special:
This is my first dystopian novel. I was very much excited about it since it was my introduction to a new genre. I would like to thank this book for such amazing description of dystopian world.

The book:
This is a kind of book which probably everyone has read including their dogs, cats and birds too!
So there is no need to hide the spoilers but as warning-
**SPOILERS AHEAD**
This book started brilliantly and within few pages sucked me into it. The world building part is brilliant. Introduction to districts, new society, people’s life, the rules, the reaping, and yes ‘The hunger Games’. It is fast paced with simplistic writing. These are all good things. The best part kids are starting to read the books.
But that’s where the good things end.
Suzanne Collins created the opportunity (golden ones) and one by one she destroyed it. But still most of the people are enthralled by the book as it eventually came out. But I’m not.
So I’m going to tell very explicitly what I didn’t like...

Using the first person perspective and thus losing the chance to give depth to any character
This story has been told through the eyes of Katniss Everdeen, she just doesn't give a damn about anyone else except her family so naturally the other characters are too shallow and one dimensional.
Many people just love Peeta and Katniss but I don’t like either of them. All I knew about Peeta was that he liked Katniss from age of five, saved her twice and is now in love with Katniss, rest is mystery.
About Katniss, she does a lot of thing (infact she does everything in the book) but never has a second thought about them, never reflect over what she has done, eventually no attachment with the character.
People tend to like Rue, Peeta, Cinna because these are few characters that spent time with Katniss, but (again)no character has depth.
One more outcome that I feel from other reviews is that Katniss is definitely heroine of the story but why make other 10 kids villain. While Cato and Clove make their kill they become monster but when Katniss makes her kill, it has to be justified as revenge for killing Rue and pity killing of Cato.
This book is all about KATNISS, KATNISS and KATNISS...

Very predictable plot
The plot is so much predictable that I was surprised after every 10 or 20 pages (I’m not out of my mind) because the story would turn out exactly how I would guess. First I thought that maybe my mind is highly synchronised with Collins’s mind but later on reading other reviews it turned out the plot was predictable.

Missed opportunities
This could have been much more interesting novel. Where did it all go wrong? As I’m writing, everything wrong in story to me looks like is outcome of first person perspective.
--I would have felt much more connected to the games had it contained a bit of background information of every important tributes. Despite the killings being graphical, I didn’t felt sad for their deaths.
--When Katniss makes her first kill, she moves over to do other things (because Rue is dying). But later when she realises that it was her first kill, still she doesn’t reflect over it even for a minute. Killing other human has effect on the killer, until and unless killer is sociopath, moreover here the killers are kids. Instead of giving insight to their mind the story flatly moves ahead with killing and ending the games.

It doesn’t make me think
I read books because I enjoy it and because they push my mind to a new level of thinking which benefit me. This book made me think only about, why I didn’t like this book when whole world is enjoying this. No further thoughts beyond that.

Maciek’s thought on this book:
“The Hunger Games reads like a bag of chips, meaning you can devour it in several short bites but it will leave you unnourished and aside from gas, it won’t have much effect.”

FOR ALL THIS 2 STARS(**)
In many reviews people come out with most lame excuse (defense) I have ever heard- IT’s A YOUNG-ADULT NOVEL
As for other books in the series, I will definitely read them but I’m not in hurry or excited with this prospect. I will read it someday, probably before second installment of the movie.

To put a perfect end to ‘The Hunger Games’ week
28th march- I watched the movie
Movie turned out pretty good, much better than I had anticipated. As I watched the movie it seemed that novel was written with movie in mind. Few minor changes, like in the end President Snow shown thinking representing its start of story unlike novel which ends. Some scenes are breath taking, too much violence. Acting by Jennifer Lawrence is good (she turned out better than Katniss in the book). I liked the movie, rated it 7/10.

This review is inspired by Maciek’s review and Brian’s review.
P.S. The kind of reviews and comments I have seen makes me think this book is being followed like religion and my review will sound like blasphemy to them. But I can’t help it, I tried to be honest.
Profile Image for Lyndsey.
126 reviews3,107 followers
April 9, 2011
Oh no. You've awakened the beast. It's Jackniss!!



Yeah. So maybe Matthew Fox from Lost isn't exactly the person you had in mind when you thought about who they might cast as Katniss in The Hunger Games, but I was inspired to create that after I saw this site called Jackimals. You might want to wait to visit it, though, because it can suck you in like an unexplained time warp flash.

I was also inspired to create the Jackniss after I read a discussion that deeply disturbed me.

Somewhere, possibly on Goodreads, I read that someone thought the Lost writers should get involved in writing the Hunger Games script. What!?!? Forget the genius Suzanne Collins, let's give it to the guys who left the greatest mystery in all of TV history completely unexplained. Don't get me wrong. I love Lost and appreciate it greatly, but they really explained nothing in terms of the plot. But don't even get me started on that - Circuits overloading. Bzzzt. *sparks*

Both Lost and Hunger Games are great character stories, but Hunger Games needs plot. It cannot do without. That's obviously not going to happen since Suzanne has already written the script, but just play along for a second.

Here's how I think it would go...

Katniss is being chased by one of the mutts who suddenly turns into the smoke monster, which gobbles her up in flashes of lightning and the sound of mechanical teeth grinding while playing a flashback of her life in the District. It quickly chokes her back up realizing she's a candidate to replace Jacob but she's in such shock from the experience that she lays down and dies, with a stunning close-up of her eye closing. Roll credits.

Now, if you haven't read The Hunger Games yet, I won't even try to justify why you should. You just should. This is just one of those books that someone says "This book is AMAZING." Then, you take their word for it and read it.

And seriously, WHY haven't you read it yet?

This is the kind of book that is so awesome in a completely thrilling and demented and emotional and shocking way that it makes you want to bang your head against the wall while throwing fairy dust in joy. Two things that I have done in the past, but never before at the same time. That's how powerful this book is.

After that, it makes you want to cry. Cry like a little baby. Like a little baby in it's crib. Then scream. Scream like a frikkin banshee with a frikkin laser beam on it's forehead.

Before I read this, I had a friend who told me that this book was 100 times better than Twilight. (I'd say that it's actually more like a gorgonzolazillion times better and don't ask me the exact amount that represents. Let's just call it "To infinity and beyond.") She also said that it was going to be an even bigger phenomenon than Twilight. I was like "Hah!" Let's face it, it can get ridiculous with the Fangirl mobbing and the crying. But I concur. I think this WILL be bigger than Twilight and obviously better. Maybe even Oscar worthy. I certainly hope so, anyway.

I know that I said I wouldn't try and talk you into reading this book but I honestly can't help it. I'm not sure that I'm doing a great job at it, though. Let's try a little visual aid.

Here is an artist's rendering of our heroine, Katniss Everdeen:



And here's the gorgeous young lady who has been cast. Jennifer Lawrence.



She may not seem like the spitting image of the girl from the book, but there is such a thing as hair dye and dirt. And and there is Photoshop, of course. So here is a pic that someone made and posted online of Jennifer as Katniss. It may change your mind.



And this side by side.



All right, besides the oversized cartoon eye, she is pretty damn close. Well, I'm convinced. How bout you?


As if that wasn't enough, you can see some examples of what Jennifer would look like in the many outfits of Katniss: HERE


Also, here's the artists version of Peeta, our hero.



I know that a lot of people would disagree but, to me, this guy is Peeta.




And just so everyone knows - The Hunger Games is currently on sale for just 5 dollars on Kindle.

Download it HERE .

I'm not sure how long the sale will last, though. I already own the book but I am seriously considering buying the Kindle edition just for the hell of it. This is absolutely one of my all time favorite books!!
Profile Image for هدى يحيى.
Author 8 books15.9k followers
February 5, 2021

يمر الوقت لأعرف وأتأكد أن هذه الثلاثية من أفضل التجارب القرائية التي مررت بها في حياتي
فهي لم تكن أبدا مجرد رواية فانتازيا استغل نجاحها لاصدار جزئين تاليين
وإنما هي قصة ثورة من نوع جديد
فيها الاثارة والمتعة والفانتازيا والابهار والرومانسية

أي التوليفة الكاملة

بل إنني أرى أن الجزء الأول كان الأقل من ناحية أدبية بحتة
فقد شعرت طوال القراءة بأن كولينز تحاول صياغة رواية ولكنها تفشل في بنائها مرة تلو الأخرى
وهذا هو سر منحي هذا الجزء ثلاثة نجوم
وما إن شرعت في قراءة الجزئين التاليين
حتى وجدتني أقول أخيرا فعلتيها يا سوزان
فمهارتها في بناء وسرد روايتها اتضحت وبرزت أخيرا
لتنتج ما جعلني أعطيها الخمس نجوم كاملة غير منقوصة وأضعها على قائمة مفضلاتي كذلك

الثلاثية كما أصبح يعرف الجميع بعد تحويلها إلى سلسلة الأفلام الشهيرة التي تحمل نفس الاسم
هي ديستوبيا غارقة في الفانتازيا ومعطرة بشخصيات مرسومة بحرفية عالية
وأحداثها لن تبقيك ساكنا لاغراقها الغير طبيعي في الخيال
ولتماسها مع الواقع السياسي في كل زمان ومكان

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



كاتنيس،، الموكنجاي،، الطائر المحاكي،،الفتاة المشتعلة بالنيران،،صاحبة الأسهم النافذة
تلك الشخصية التي أبدعت في رسمها وترميزها سوزان كولينز
هي مفتاح الرواية ومحرك أحداثها الرئيسي
وهي التي بقت في مخيلتي بملامح جينيفر لورانس الشديدة الموهبة
وهي التي تتعايش معها ومع حكاياتها وآلامها وقصص غرامها وشجاعتها طيلة الثلاثية

هناك عشرات الشخصيات التي لا تنسى أبدا
وكل واحدة مرسومة كما قلت بدقة وتفرد ودرامية عالية

كلها تصارع ونصارع معها في عالم مخترع
فيه من العجائب ما يذهلك
ومن القسوة والاذلال ما يثير حفيظة أعتى أعداء الثورة والحرية
فالنظام هنا أعاد العبودية والقهر كأشد ما يكونا
وأعطيا للظلم والاستبداد معان جديدة
فلا مجال للرحمة هنا

إنها وحشية بربرية مزينة بالورود البيضاء النفاذة برائحة الدماء

أنا تمتعت وانتشيت وسعدت بقراءة هذه الثلاثية التجارية الشهيرة
وأرشحها للجميع
فهي أفضل من سلسلة الأفلام بمراحل
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