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Review: The Hunger Games

April 26, 2011

A ginormous publishing event, The Mockingjay Trilogy by Suzanne Collins is a series that has sold millions and is currently being filmed as a major motion picture. The Hunger Games is the first in the trilogy, and I thought I’d get in on the act and read it.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. But Katniss has been close to death before—and survival, for her, is second nature. The Hunger Games is a searing novel set in a future with unsettling parallels to our present. Welcome to the deadliest reality TV show ever…

Basically, there is a group of people who live in luxury while others, including the protagonist Katniss, lives in different districts and each year two people are randomly chosen to fight in the Hunger Games. What are these games? Well, it’s a televised fight to the death. Yikes.

Besides from the obvious parallel to Battle Royale or Series 7: The Contenders (that was a rubbish film), the book is surprisingly rip-roaring and exciting. The writing is slick, and the pace is constantly moving at a roaring speed. However, the characterisation is underwhelming, Katniss doesn’t come alive and nor did I ever care about her plight. The plot itself became increasingly movie-like with the majority of the novel dealing with the ‘game’. It’s entertaining, but it’s like eating a Pot Noodle; tasty, but absolutely no substance.

I understand why it’s been such a success, it’s an unadulterated blockbuster but it just didn’t do much for me. It’s enjoyable so, y’know read it if you want but don’t expect greatness.

Will I read the remaining two? Maybe, if I see it in the library.

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