The Hunger Games

***SPOILERS*** Do NOT read this post if you are in the process of reading The Hunger Games, if you’re planning on reading them, or are going to see the movie in March.

Alright…now that that’s out of the way.

I’m OBSESSED with this series. Over a year ago, a friend from BDC and I were chatting about good books we were reading. I recommended The Mermaid Chair and he recommended The Hunger Games. He told me the basic premise of the story: post-apocalyptic North America, one Capitol and 12 surrounding districts. A revolt against the Capitol resulted in the destruction of District 13 and the creation of the Hunger Games: a yearly fight to the death between 24 kids ages of 12 to 18…two tributes from each of the 12 surviving districts. The Games were a reminder to the districts of the all-encompassing power of the Capital.

I can’t say it really sounded like my cup of tea when he told me about it, but after a crazy spring semester in my junior year, the summer beckoned with endless hours of reading time. I went to the library and picked up the first book in the trilogy. The next day I drove to the library in the next town over just to find the second: Catching Fire, and the third day I was plowing through Mockingjay. 

Three books, three days, I was hooked.

My friend, Shannon, informed me that there was a movie on the way in March which only fueled my excitement. I began hooking each of my friends on the series, and now, after Christmas, a whole bunch of them share my enthusiasm.

Now there are just over two months until the movie comes out, which I’m definitely planning on seeing at the midnight premiere. I’ve watched the trailer about fifty times since it came out and it still gives me chills:

YEAH.

Alright, now seriously, if you didn’t heed my first warning, I’m about to go into some spoilers, so GET OUT OF HERE if you haven’t read all three!

Okay.

So here’s the deal. The Hunger Games (the first book in the series), loved it. Katniss kicks ass all over the place. She’s smart, she’s determined, and she underestimates her own badass-ness. She steps up to replace her sister and holds onto her promise to Prim to fight as hard as she can to come back home for her. Katniss’ pride and determination is what makes me want to be her.

As a side note, I started growing out my hair this summer. I realized after re-reading the series, that I’m doing it because I want to be like Katniss with her signature braid down her back.

So Katniss and Peeta dominate in the first book. I was holding my breath at the end when they threatened to kill themselves and as I realized the repercussions of that simple act I couldn’t wait to keep reading.

At first, I was pretty pissed when, in Catching Fire, Katniss was not behaving how I had come to expect her to. When she hears about the rebellions starting in other districts, her instinct is to…run away? What? Where is the fighter from the first book? Katniss accepts President Snow’s challenge to convince the districts of her love for Peeta and spends their whole victory tour faking her feelings for Peeta and desperately playing the role of a love-stricken girl in an attempt to stop the uprisings in other districts.

She fails, and finds herself sent back into the arena. So here, I’m like, wtf, didn’t we already do this plot line? But I have to admit, I loved the second time around in the arena. It was so different from the first time that it wasn’t repetitive. Katniss’ determination to protect Peeta is nice, but I never felt like she truly loved him. Am I the only one that felt like this? Her and Peeta had to endure so much trauma together that they’re inevitably going to be close, but did she really love him? I never felt like she did. I think she felt an obligation to him and clearly cared about him, but nothing more.

Which brings me to Gale and the third book: Mockingjay. I’m 100% team Gale on this one. I was beyond frustrated when she ended up with Peeta at the end. In a way though, it made sense. Katniss was not the same girl she was in the first book. She was broken. She’d been through too much, she was not a fighter, she was emotionally spent. Peeta was safe, he was her security, and I suppose it makes sense that she chose that. She belonged with Gale though. They were supposed to be together, but Katniss couldn’t be with him after everything she went through.

The third book was definitely my least favorite just because Katniss wasn’t the same anymore. It was as if her determination and pride had gone out the window. She was almost selfish in the way she behaved post being rescued from the arena. This was not at all the same girl who flouted the law to keep her family fed and safe in the first book.

When I re-read the series this fall I actually didn’t read the third one again. I probably will before the movie comes out though.

Anyway, what are everyone else’s thoughts about the series? Did you like it? Peeta or Gale? What do you think of Katniss’ transformation from book 1 to book 3?

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About MMM

Resolving to write in 2011!
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3 Responses to The Hunger Games

  1. LibriCritic says:

    I am also a huge fan of the book and cannot wait for the movie to come out this March (I swear I’ve watched the trailer a hundred times the day it came out). As for Peeta vs Gale…it was never a question in my mind. Peeta was always so determined and sure of his affection for Katniss (minus the brainwashing bit). He was her safe place, like you said, just as her father used to be. He also complimented her perfectly, being charismatic and well-spoken, while she took care of all the butt-kicking. Gale, on the other hand, was the exact same as Katniss–he could not give her anything she did not already have. So, I never saw Katniss with anybody but good, dependable Peeta. Though I know a lot of people disagree…

    • MMM says:

      I see your point about Gale…I actually think I’M in the minority for wanting her to be with him. I saw them together because he was strong so she didn’t always have to be the only one doing the butt-kicking lol…although I suppose Peeta isn’t totally worthless haha. Thanks for the “like” and the subscription! 🙂

  2. LibriCritic says:

    Naw I don’t think you’re in the minority at all. I know a lot of people who liked Gale because he was such a strong character–and Peeta does get a bit whiny and overly romantic at times.

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