Here is my 45 second endorsement of The Hunger Games trilogy:
I am not usually a bandwagon-jumper. But when I only ever heard good things (and increasingly frequently) about The Hunger Games, I decided to give them a whirl.
My friend Karen lent me her copies with two comments, "You'll read them in a week," and "If I had known other people read Young Adult novels, I would have been telling everyone to read them a year ago!"
So on Sunday morning, I flipped open the first book as I lay in bed. Then I read it all the way to church, even though reading on the subway sometimes makes me nauseous. Then I read it while waiting for a streetcar. Then I read it while waiting for a friend. Then, when I walked in my door at 4pm, I sat on the couch and kept reading.
I finished it around 7pm. Did my share of the apartment-cleaning, and by 8pm, was sitting on the couch again with the second book. At 10 o'clock, I crawled into my bed. At quarter to one, I put down the second, now finished book.
Book number three was started on the streetcar to work this morning. It will be done by tomorrow night, I am guessing.
I got so involved and stressed about the story that I found myself constantly texting Karen to vent my feelings of "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" If you could have seen my face...everyone would have laughed. At one point, I literally sat on the couch with my jaw dropped and my eyes wide.
Now that you're all curious, here's the premise:
America is divided into twelve Districts. Ruled by The Capitol after an attempted rebellion, each year the Hunger Games take place as a reminder of who is in control. Each District must send two tributaries, one girl and one boy between the ages of 12 and 18, to the arena - a wild terrain of some sort, where they will fight to the death. The entire country watches and bets on who will be victorious. There is one winner, and their district receives food and resources while the other eleven scrape by for another year. In the seventy-four Games, Katniss becomees one of District 12's tributaries. And nothing goes as the Capitol plans.
And a final caveat: every book has its flaws, and I'm not going to guarantee you'll love the series. There is definitely an element of tugging-on-my-girly-heartstrings predictability to it. But you know what? I let it tug away. And for once, I'm not gonna fight that.
(Also. I have mixed feelings on the pending book-based movie.)