Young adult fiction lately has been flooded by books about Vampires, Witches, Werewolves, and all sorts of paranormal subjects. They have also invaded movies that are for young adults. The Hunger Games is here to challenge that clichéd trend.
The Hunger Games is in the genre of Science Fiction and Post-Apoocalyptic Fantasy. (So think Mad Max meets Death Race 2000 meets 1984.) That being said, it’s not for children below the age of 13.
The setting is a future North America where the nation that was once the United States are divided into 12 Districts ruled by an authoritative regime, al a 1984. And every year, as punishment for the past Civil War between the government and rebels, each District sends two kids, 12 and up, to fight to the death in the arena.
When Katniss Everdeen’s sister is chosen to go to the arena, she volunteers to take her younger siblings place.
That is all I’m going to spoil. 🙂
The plot moves at a very brisk place in the beginning, lags a little in the middle, then moves quickly at the end. The book has many twists you’ll never see until they happen. If you love twists in books, The Hunger Games is perfect.
When reading the book, I was reminded a lot of Golding’s Lord of the Flies. Having to survive in the arena wore down the participants, many went insane after having to fight tooth and nail, and kill. And the people watching the games, like the tribe of children of Flies , cheering as people were killed. And like Ralph in Flies, Katniss fights to remain civilized.
Now, before I go on a long literary discussion, let’s look at the writing. Collins wrote the book in 1st Person POV, so the only viewpoint in the story you get is Katniss’s. I think 1st Person kind of limited the story. I wanted to get into the other character’s heads, and learn more about what makes them tick.
As for the use of language, Colllins shines. Imaginary drool dripped down my chin at the way she described food. The technology was described simply, like reading Farenheit 451 and Dune. The action scenes were fast and hard-hitting, just as action should be.
Overall, this is a very good book. I give The Hunger Games 4 out of 5 stars!
Available for Kindle, and in print.