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This blog is an extension of our book groups which we welcome you to attend on the first Tuesday of each month.

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Thursday, July 12, 2012

The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins

In a dystopian future, an oppressive regime has the power to keep 12 districts in line from a single gleaming capitol city.  To display their power, as punishment for a failed rebellion and simply for their own entertainment, the capitol demands one male and one female teenager from each district every year.  These tributes compete against each other in a televised battle to the death.

I resisted reading The Hunger Games for a long time.  The premise above really didn’t appear to have much room for depth, but I read the first few chapters of my mother’s copy when she was visiting one weekend and reserved a copy for myself the next day.

It’s well written.  Right from the start the protagonist, Katniss, is a believable and likable character, but more importantly, the tension between the capitol and the districts is obvious.  Katniss is a hard and sometimes cold character, but she’s inherently good.   She loves her sister and looks after her family any way she can, but Katniss is headed for the barbarism of the Hunger Games where only one tribute can survive.  While many of her opponents there are vicious killers there is also Peeta, the male tribute from her home district who’s act of kindness towards her years earlier has Katniss feeling indebted to him and Rue, the youngest competitor in the games who reminds Katniss of her own sister.  

Katniss enters the games with her life and her humanity, and while we can foresee ways for her to survive the games with one, surviving with both seems impossible.

Michael L.

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