Jan 12, 2012

Review: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Kindle Edition)

I was reluctant to read this first book of the series because this is completely out of my comfort zone. But with the movie coming out (with such a great cast) this Spring, I didn't want to be left out. Another reason I couldn't pass this Kindle edition up was that Amazon offered it as a free Daily Deal a few months ago - FOR ALL THREE BOOKS!. That was the clincher. So, if you've been living under a rock the last few years and don't know what this book is about, here is a quick rundown for you from Goodreads:

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, the shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts.  The Capitol is harsh 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 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 weigh survival against humanity and life against love. 

My Thoughts:
 I have to be honest and say I thought it was going to take me awhile to get into this story of The Hunger Games but I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly Suzanne Collins reeled me in. Right away I was able to form a visual image in my mind of the world Katniss and her family lives in - and it is bleak. I think that is why I generally stay away from these types of books: I don't like all of the bleak and barren conditions associated with this genre.  But I was able to look behond it, partly because I really liked Katniss. Her love for her sister was pure and genuine and that really spoke to me.

Although I did have a hard time accepting the concept of these Hunger Games, I was eventually able to get into the story and even enjoy it. I thought Susanne Collins did a great job portraying the Capitol, the Arena and the locals there. The Games themselves were disturbing, but again, I had to remind myself this is the genre and let it go and not dwell on it.

I ended up really getting into it and rooting for Katniss and Peeta, who I really like a lot. I was very impressed with how well Collins wrote the parts about the battles and how Peeta and Katniss survived in the arena. How in the world did she come up with this concept? The romance angle was original and I thought played well into the story. I also like Gale's character, even though we don't really get to know much about him. Maybe in the next book? Hmmm....

So I am happy to say I really enjoyed THE HUNGER GAMES. I am surprised by that but that's what getting out of your comfort zone is all about! You never know what you may end up liking. That being said, I don't know how necessary a second or third book is, but I'm willing to give them a chance. I've just started reading CATCHING FIRE and I am not totally sold on it, but I'm only in Chapter 3.

For those of you who think this book just isn't for you - I say take a chance with it! You may find you really like it!

Author: Suzanne Collins
Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks
Published: September 2009
Pages: 388 pp
Rating:  5 Stars out of 5


  1. I've picked this up for Kindle as well, for many of the same reasons you did, but haven't yet started it. Thanks for the review without spoilers--it looks like I may move this up on my reading list (I must admit the movie trailer looks interesting).

    Please keep us posted on your thoughts on the rest of the series. The media is portraying this as "the next Harry Potter" and I wonder if you agree?

  2. I blew through book one is one sitting. Very entertaining. My "like" for the series diminished with each book, but I still got a kick out of it.

  3. Linda; I try not to include spoilers in all my reviews because that deters people who haven't read the books from reading my thoughts.I'll keep you posted on the other books too!

    Tina: I was surprised what a quick read it was. I think it took me 3 or 4 days but I was also reading other books too. I'm really not feeling #2 but I'll keep reading.

  4. I've been a little reluctant to pick this one up because I've heard it compared to Battle Royale, and I didn't enjoy that book at all. I'll probably try to read it before I see the movie.

  5. I don't think the last two books are as good, but it's still a decent series. And now you have to find out how it all ends! :)

  6. I've successfully resisted as I don't really like dystopian-type novels. But, the movie actually looks good so I've been thinking about reading it.

  7. That was a great deal from Kindle!! I loved the first book and will be reading Catching Fire this month. Marcus read all 3 and was a bit let down with the 3rd one but overall he loved it. For his 17th birthday he wants to take 6 friends to go see The Hunger Games! I hope he lets me tag along! :D

  8. I loved the first book in the series and just finished Catching Fire. I was not as thrilled with Parts 1 and 2 of Catching Fire but Part 3 made it all worth while. The series is outside of my usual genre of reading so I was shocked when I found myself enjoying the first book.

  9. I normally don't care for dystopian novels, but you have convinced me to read this one!


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I look forward to hearing from you again soon!