Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Book review - The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Well. Someone somewhere has decided that this is going to be a BIG BOOK of the year. Every book shop I go in, I’m confronted by stacks upon stacks of the Hunger Games on the three-for-two tables, on displays, everywhere I look really. Stephenie Meyer and Stephen King have quotes on the cover supporting it. Yesterday, I found it in Asda. All this and it only came out in the UK two or three weeks ago, though it’s been extremely successful in the US. Does it deserve all this hype? ABSOLUTELY YES.
Since reading this book, I’ve tried to describe it to friends who I’m recommending it to, and every time I find that I can’t do it justice. So I’ll just give you the blurb.

'In a dark vision of the near future, a terrifying reality TV show is taking place. Twelve boys and twelve girls are forced to appear in a live event called the Hunger Games. There is only one rule: kill or be killed. When sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen steps forward to take her sister’s place in the games, she sees it as a death sentence. But Katniss has been close to death before. For her, survival is second nature.'

I think that this might be one of the best books I’ve ever read. Really, it has everything; action, suspense, love, great characters and is so well written! I stayed up (unintentionally, I might add) until twenty to five reading this book. And then didn’t sleep until about six just thinking about it. Ironically enough, one of the quotes on the cover mentions how you can’t stop thinking about this book. The idea is original and interesting, but I think it’s the characters that make this book. From page one I was completely in the story. The other thing that Suzanne Collins manages superbly in this book is incorporating the past to tell the present story better. The only other author I’ve read who has achieved this is Maria Snyder with the Poison Study series. This is the only reason that I am apprehensive of the sequel scheduled for next year. I’m not sure if Collins has used up all of her back-story and the next instalment will lose some of its wonderful writing as a result. But that’s not going to stop me from buying it. Something else that I’ve got to respect the author for is that this is the first of a trilogy, yet the story ended! It had a satisfactory conclusion, while still leaving me with small questions I need to know the answer to.
Probably one of the reasons that this book is being so promoted is that it is pretty readable for everyone. Girls, boys, adults and teens. Some kids too, but be aware that the book
is quite violent at points. Deaths are described, and though I wouldn’t say it’s particularly graphic, the concept may be disturbing to younger readers. So for almost anyone really, if you’re looking for a thought-provoking, entertaining-yet-completely-gripping, well written story, look no further. Just be warned – don’t start this late at night. Because you will not want to stop.

Oh, and the cover? Very cool. I couldn’t decide whether it suited the book for a while, but I can’t help but like it. Swapable front cover! Here is the American one on the right, which is very different. I’m not sure which captures the essence of the book more. Still, it’s fun to compare.


  1. I'm not sure that I liked this book, and yet I feel compelled to continue on with the trilogy. I want to know more about the Capitol.

  2. I know what you mean. At first I thought it was the best book I'd read, but it still wasn't my favourite, but the more I thought about it, the more I loved it.

  3. Nice to hear it's big in the UK too (since I love it). Haven't seen it in Germany yet.

  4. Ahh! Everyone is praising this book. I must get it in my life. :)


  5. I agree that this book is absolutely fantastic!

  6. i LOVE i this book can't wait to read CACHING FIRE!