Book Review: ‘The Hunger Games’ by Suzanne Collins

Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone 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 will weigh survival against humanity and life against love.”

Yes, yes. I know, I’m way behind. First A Game of Thrones and now The Hunger Games – both books are ones I obviously should have read ages ago and yet somehow I’m only just getting to them… it’s not my fault I swear! I am slightly ashamed to admit that I’ve had this series sitting on my shelf for months now and it took the combination of briefly misplacing my Kindle and a friend of mine reading them to finally spur me into action.

I must say, that I very much missed holding a real, paper book in my hands. I’m not sure if it was the fact that I was reading a hardcover book or because the story was just so tantalizing but it seemed to fly by much faster than usual.

But I’m getting ahead of myself!

I first must mention the fact that I don’t actually care for the style that the book was written in. As I have mentioned every single time I read a book written in first person point of view… it’s not my favourite. I’m always a little disappointed when I flip a book open (I can actually say that this time, hehe), and I discover that sad fact. The first couple of paragraphs were hard to get into… and then suddenly the book was over. Obviously my dislike of the POV didn’t hamper me all that much in this particular case. :P

Sadly I had seen the movie, so there wasn’t all that much in the way of surprises for me. Remind me never to do that again. I don’t mind watching the movie after the book, because it’s just a movie — but reading the book second just makes me think about how much better the book would have been if it had been first!

Sorry, getting distracted again. Back to the review!

The storyline was more basic than I was expecting; for some reason I thought there would be more depth and history in regards to the society and government. Perhaps this is something that will be brought more closely to the surface in the sequels. I hope so because as much as I enjoyed the book I felt that I was missing out on a lot of information.

It wasn’t nearly as gory or disturbing as I was expecting, which gives it a bump up in my books. I hate to see books marketed as young adult when really they’re too packed full of violent details.

That’s not to say that it is all fun and games; obviously the very premise behind the book is disturbing on several different levels. But the author didn’t take it too far as many writers in today’s day and age are likely to do. The descriptions that could curdle your stomach are instead often just enough to explain the circumstances; what you really create from them is entirely up to your own mind. Though in my opinion it is more suitable for older teens as there is still (as you may have guessed) a fair amount of violence.

It was an easy read, fast paced and entertaining from the very beginning. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to someone who is a light reader or is new to the reading world.

As for the sequels, do you really have to ask me if I’m going to read them? Obviously my answer is yes.

May the odds be ever in your favour… 

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The Hunger Games
Ebook: Amazon, Kobo Books and Barnes & Noble.
Paperback: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, BooksAMillion and Indigo Books.
Audio Book: Audible

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12 thoughts on “Book Review: ‘The Hunger Games’ by Suzanne Collins”

  1. I liked Hunger Games a lot – I like first person, but I did struggle with the present tense, though I think it was appropriate for Katniss, who’s very much in the moment. I thought of the trilogy, this one was by far the best (it has the best set piece). Nice review!

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