"I keep wishing I could think of a way to... to show the Capitol they don't own me. That I'm more than just a piece in their Games."
The Hunger Games were more or less my first introduction into the world of young adult fiction. I read them about a year ago, and since then, I've been frequenting the teen section at the library and bookstore.
My friend was the one who first convinced me to read The Hunger Games. She walked up to me, asked me if I was reading anything at the moment, and upon hearing my reply of 'no' reached into her bag and handed me the first book in the trilogy. "Read this," she said. "It's amazing."
And I must say, I completely agree.
The Hunger Games is a dystopian read; set in post-apocalyptic North America. A large country by the name of Panem inhabits the continent; consisting of thirteen districts and a glorious Capitol city.
Once, though, the districts rebelled against the Capitol, resulting in the destruction of District 13 and the devastation of the rest of the country. To remind the rebels of their terrible mistake; to punish them; the Capitol instated the Hunger Games, a competition held every year, where one boy and one girl from every District, between the ages of twelve and eighteen, must be sent to the Capitol to fight to the death, where only one will emerge as the Victor. Everything is televised, publicized, and heavily glorified.
The story revolves around a sixteen-year-old girl living in District 12 by the name of Katniss Everdeen. At the beginning of the book, her younger sister Primrose is chosen to go to the Capitol for the Games, and Katniss volunteers in her stead. Katniss must not only survive the Games, but deal with a romance between her and another tribute from District 12, all the while deciding if she is willing to kill strangers her own age as a pawn of the government.
I adore this trilogy. If I were to teach a class on how to write good young-adult fiction that will hold the short attention span of teens while being insanely tastefully written, I would use this series as an example. I have yet to meet anybody who has read these books and not liked them. I also know of several adults who adore them.
I will say this, though; this series is very, very violent, and dark as well. Not as dark as, say, Harry Potter (which in my opinion got very dark towards the end), but it's still a tad depressing.
I, myself, got really into these books. I read The Hunger Games over the course of two days and Catching Fire took me one other day. I finished Catching Fire back in February of 2010, so I had to wait quite awhile for Mockingjay. Which, by the way, took me, like, ten hours to read.
My point here is: Simply put, these books are fantastic. I definitely recommend them to anyone in search of a gripping read.