Sunday, March 08, 2009

"the Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins

Why I read it: This book was recommended on various blogs I read (this one and this one come to mind, but maybe others as well). It was up for a cybil. I was trapped at the mall for an hour last Sunday, and so I went to the bookstore and kind of accidentally read the first 40 pages. And after that it just sort of came home with me.

I showed it to the boy in the car on the way home. He finished it on Wednesday.

Tastes like chicken: Ys by Joanna Newsom. I know it's a CD, but it makes sense to me.

Bookmark: Store receipt

What I liked: Wow. This book totally hooked me. I read a bunch of pages last night while sitting around in public, and I laughed out loud. I totally cared about Katniss. The scene about Rue's bread made me cry.

The story takes place in a future society that has risen up out of the ruins of the USA. There's a capitol, somewhere in the rockies, and 12 districts (used to be 13, until there was a rebellion and the 13th was destroyed). Katniss lives in district 12, which is in Appalachia. The districts seem like small towns, really, small enough that everybody knows everybody.

Due to the rebellion that was long before Katniss was born, the 12 districts have to send two tributes each to the capitol every year for the opportunity to fight to the death for the entertainment of the people of the capitol, and for the ongoing punishment of the people of the districts (who you would think had been punished enough already, considering that they don't get to eat the food they grow, or use the coal they mine, etc.). Katniss, of course, gets to go. The story is told from her voice.

She's a really good main character, because she's totally likeable even though she's got huge flaws. She is an unreliable narrator, I suppose, because she has some really significant trust issues. I found myself shaking my head at her, seeing what other people intended, and how she perceived things.

Haymitch was also an awesome character.

What I hated: That I have to wait for a sequel that doesn't come out until September. What's up with that?

Lesson: Right now I'm trying to figure out how to make one of my characters in my wretched novel at least a little bit likeable. Maybe Katniss can help me with that.

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