The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games, written by Suzanne Collins, is fiction in the young adult genre, which is not my age group, but I found myself unable to put it down. Its combination of nerve-racking tension, thrilling action, and engaging love story kept me up until the wee hours. I was surprised at how completely engrossing the plot was. Like Brave New World, this story is set in a future where the government oppresses its people, but the book also borrows ideas from the Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur.

When the book opens, North America as we know it has been destroyed and is now divided into 12 districts, ruled by an oppressive government located at the Capitol. Katniss Everdeen, a 16-year-old girl from District 12, takes her younger sister’s place as one of 24 “tributes” selected every year to participate in the Hunger Games at the Capitol.

The Games pit children from ages 12 to 18 against each other in a fight to the death in a giant, treacherous arena. Everything is televised and highly publicized all over the country. Katniss must not only survive the Games, but deal with a romance between her and another tribute from District 12, all the while deciding if she is willing to kill strangers her own age as a pawn of an oppressive government.

The Hunger Games is the first book in a trilogy, and it was released in 2008. I wish I had known it was a trilogy before I finished the book, because then I would have been prepared for the ending, which was a transition into the next book rather than a totally satisfying end. The third and final installation of the series came out in August 2010. Suzanne Collins, the author, worked for Nickelodeon and wrote The Overlander before she wrote The Hunger Games. The Hunger Games won several awards and was a New York Times bestseller. Once I started reading it, I could not put it down.

The Games provided a backdrop to one of the most enthralling plots I have ever read. Katniss constantly battles thirst, fire,...

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