23 OctHunger Games Trilogy 42, 46, + 49

Hunger Games I don’t normally read books that people rave about. I’ve done it in the past and I’ve found it builds these false expectations in me that when I actually read the book, Iā€™m so disappointed. This has happened with Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. Sure, they could have been good books for me. But because I was expecting something AMAZING they just ended up being okay.

At any rate, I’d been interested in the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins for a while. The idea of it appealed to me, and I’ve been getting more into Teen / Young Adult books lately. However, it was soooo popular and so hyped up I was worried that I was going to be in for another disappointment.

Wow, was I wrong.

Catching FireThe Hunger Games Trilogy includes the books the Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay. It takes place in the future, in a dystopian society that has become Earth. After a very bloody and gruesome war, North America was eventually turned into a new country: Panem. Divided into 13 districts and the Capitol, the Capitol rules everything with an iron fist. The districts are hungry and deprived, while they slave over their own respective specialties. The Districts didn’t like this and that eventually lead to a revolt. Unfortunately, the Capitol managed to win that war too ā€“ destroying District 13 to prove their point.

In order to keep the citizens in line, they hold a Hunger Games every year. Children between the ages of 13 and 18 get their names put into a big barrel. From each District a boy and a girl are chosen to be sent to the games. These tributes are then forced into the Arena, where they must fight to the death until only one of the twenty-four tributes remains. The winner’s District then gets extra food and resources for a year until the next Games.

MockingjayThe story opens at the reaping of the 74th Hunger Games ā€“ the day when the two names are chosen. When her little sister Prim is chosen to be in the Games, Katniss Everdeen knows what she must do. She volunteers to take her sister’s place. That done, she is whisked away to the Capitol along with Peeta Mellark, a boy her age that she knows of but doesn’t know well.

I don’t want to reveal too much of the series, because it would totally spoil it.

But wow! This story is great. At it’s heart it’s a typical love triangle between Katniss, Peeta, and Gale Hawthorne (an old friend of Katniss’). Of course, it’s a love story thrown into a dystopian society where they send their kids to their death in order to be taught a lesson. Phew.

I like the fact that Katniss is a different kind of heroine. She’s by no means perfect, but her imperfections aren’t stereotypical for a female character. She doesn’t care much for her appearance, but she has the scars and bruises to prove it. Katniss is oblivious to typical social mores in her District, and even when she realizes when she’s possibly done wrong, it doesn’t take two seconds for her accept it. She’s used to fending for herself and her family, so she’s very much out of the loop on how things usually work.

This is very much a story of growing up as well. Katniss learns that she needs to overcome some of her misunderstandings and really accept what is going on around her.

The storyline is paced really well, and it makes it so you don’t want to put the books down. It was all I could do not to pick up the next books in the series and devour them, since I was trying to pace myself in between each.

My only bummer moment came in the last book. I felt the ending of the story was slightly a bit of a let down. Katniss works so hard to achieve her goals, it felt like a cop out in a way since things are wrapped up the way they are (trying to be spoiler-free, sorry). That said, the ending was okay.

I give this series 4.5 stars. Definitely recommend it!!

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