The blurb: Katniss is a 16-year-old girl living with her mother and younger sister in the poorest district of Panem, the remains of what used be the United States. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, “The Hunger Games.” The terrain, rules, and level of audience participation may change but one thing is constant: kill or be killed. When her sister is chosen by lottery, Katniss steps up to go in her place.
My review: This is sad to say as it’s only March but I dont think any other book this year could come close to just how amazing The Hunger Games is. What also saddens me is that this book was first published in 2008 and due to a terrible cover and the general impression that it was about war, I didnt want to read it.
The Hunger Games in my head, is a cross between The Lord of the Flies and The Running Man but with it’s own unique and very clever universe and set of characters. I have not been able to get this book out of my head since I read it at the weekend, plus I did something I rarely do and read the entire thing, start to finish, in one day. I refused invitations to go out, I demanded I was left alone, I wandered to the loo, to get food, to grunt at my partner always with the book in my eyeline or in my hand.
The Hunger Games is a startlingly simple and very clever concept. The earth as we know it has changed, North America is now the Capitol, surrounded by twelve Districts that each has a specialist industry. The districts have challenged the Capitol before but the rebellion was swiftly squashed resulting in District 13’s annihilation. The remaining Districts are powerless, some go hungry, some are overworked. The Capitol in a very George Orwell 1984-esque way keeps an eye on all with peacekeepers in each District. Every year there is a reaping where two tributes, a boy and a girl, from each District are entered into the hunger games, a tournament where only one can survive, there can only be one victor.
Katniss Everdeen is a hugely likeable character, strong, silent, defiant and humble but resourceful and spirited when roused. This book made me weep as the unjustness of the Capitol, the struggle of humans when pitted against one another. It’s a brilliant, brilliant book, poignant, thought-provoking and I am recommending it to everyone I see. As soon as I closed it for the last time I ordered Catching Fire.
I know it’s not allowed but it’s my blog and I can do what I like!
15 out of 10 stars! ***************