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The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

I think I could just make one statement about this book and leave it at that, and my feelings about it would have been vented.    That one statement is WOW.  That wouldn’t make a very interesting post, though, would it?

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins is another book that certainly doesn’t need my praise.  (For some reason, I’ve been reading- -gulp!–best-sellers recently.)  This book is a fast-paced YA dystopian novel that, at least to me, seems a cut above what I expected.  Rather than bore you with yet another synopsis, I’ll simply refer you to Sherry’s review.  I read her review long before I had any real intention of reading the book.  I actually picked up the book for my Reading My Library self-challenge; I stalled out on C at the end of last year.  However, after going back to review Sherry’s thoughts, I must say that I had the same reaction to it as she did:  this story is “TV’s Survivor meets Shirley Jackson’s short story ‘The Lottery.'”  Throw in a lots of allusions to ancient Rome, and you’ve got a very engaging and suspenseful mixture.

The only complaint I really have about this book (possible spoiler alert!) is that I got a little weary of the romance therein, but I’m not exactly a member of the intended YA audience.  However, because of the romance, I can see how this book would have tremendous appeal to teen girls even though the genre it belongs to might not typically be as appealing to them as it is to boys.  (?)

Oh, I do have one more complaint:  the fact that this book has a cliffhanger ending AND the series isn’t finished yet.  Jennifer warned me about this (and so did Sherry, but I have a terrible memory), but I had already begun reading the book when this fact registered.  Let me just say that if you manage to get to the end of the first chapter, there’s no going back with this one.  I do so much better if I can read sequels and series books in quick succession.  Now this question remains: should I go ahead and read the sequel, Catching Fire, or wait until the fall when the third novel comes out?  I’m thinking these would be good ones to have on hand for the easy, mindless sort of reading I’ll likely need after the wee one arrives. . .

If you like YA fiction or exciting reads in the least, give this one a try.  I give it a Highly Recommended!


16 Responses

  1. If you don’t like cliffhanger than avoid the next book until the third comes out. The second book has a HUGE cliff hanger of an ending. Love this series and I’m eagerly anticipating the third book!

  2. Well, I haven’t read it yet and remain on the fence about it — mostly because of the romance issues involved. (To which I say “why? why? why?” when it comes to teens.) Anyway – is it too much? Or is tempered?


      It’s not too, too much–NOTHING graphic/***ual. It’s more along the lines of “this is what the public wants” in terms of the overall setting/message of the book (which I know might not make much sense if you haven’t read it). In fact, the protagonist is really just putting on an act (or is she? at least she thinks she is). It only bothered me because I’m just not that much of a fan of romance (except my own 😉 ) — I actually thought the whole thing was rather sweet and innocently drawn, despite the desperate circumstances. Granted, these teens are placed in some DESPERATE circumstances, so you might find it more extreme than I did.

  3. I think I read both ‘The Lottery’ and the one I referenced for this, ‘The Most Dangerous Game,’ in 8th grade. Isn’t that weird? What a theme for 8th grade readers. No wonder I didn’t like that year.

    Thanks for the good review.

    • I didn’t mind “The Most Dangerous Game” too much, but I thought “The Lottery” was just plain weird. I think I read them in the ninth grade. It’s interesting to contemplate exactly why we choose that age to introduce our children to the concept, isn’t it?

      I actually had a group of second semester college freshmen read “The Most Dangerous Game” for a class last year. I’m not too sure some of them got it then, either.

  4. I really enjoyed both books, and I’m looking forward to the third one coming out. Again, if you don’t like cliffhangers wait for the third to come out and read them together.

  5. I’ve loved both books, but it’s really hard having to wait for the third one.

  6. Oh, rats, I just found out that I have the second book in at the library. Do I read it and make myself suffer waiting until fall for resolution or cancel the hold and read it in a few months? Decisions, decisions…

  7. […] I Read It! is a great way to find even more good books to read!    This month, I’m linking up my review of The Hunger Games.  […]

  8. August 24th!!! That’s when Mockingjay, the third book, will be released. I am also in the camp of people who are anxious for that date to come! 🙂

  9. I think that the first book was sort of stand alone-ish. The second book REALLY is a cliffhanger, so yes, I would wait to read Catching Fire until you can follow it up with the 3rd.

    Also, I think that the romance becomes even more prominent in the 2nd, and I have a feeling it will be the focus of the 3rd.

    So maybe quit while you’re ahead?? I loved the Hunger Games and enjoyed Catching Fire, but it definitely doesn’t stand alone.

  10. It’s funny that you said “Wow”, because that’s all I said on my blog when I read it! I couldn’t think of anything say! I am hurrying through another book so can start Catching Fire.

  11. I started this book, but the first chapter seemed dark and desolate to me, and I put it down. Maybe I need to try again!

  12. I LOVE THIS BOOK!! When I read it, I had no idea there was even going to be a second or third–and was therefore so very excited to read Catching Fire. I think Hunger Games to be the better of the two but both are excellent and I’m with Dawn and the others who CANNOT WAIT for the next installment!

  13. Wow, so many folks really like this one. I’m not one to read ‘best sellers’ for the sake of them, but I surely don’t turn down a good read.
    My teenagers both asked for this book at Sam’s Club recently, so it sits in one of their rooms at the moment–I shall seek and find, I shall!!


  14. […] Jolanthe {Leaving Yesterday}2. Jolanthe {Sense & Sensibility ~ Insight Edition}3. Amy @ Hope Is the Word (The Hunger Games)4. Amy @ Hope Is the Word (The Lion & the Mouse; Out of the Egg; Snow)5. Amy @ Hope Is the Word […]

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