Monday, 12 March 2012

The Hunger Games - Book Review

Suzanne Collins has created a dark version of the future. Her vision is one which is not dissimilar to the ‘Big Brother’ of Orwell’s 1984. Collins’ version of ‘Big Brother’ is known as the ‘Capitol’, which in simple terms is the capital city of the country Panem (which we now know as North America). Panem is divided into 12 districts which all serve a different purpose to the ‘Capitol’ from mining, to manufacturing and agriculture.

The ‘Capitol’ have many laws and rules in place, and ‘Peacekeepers’ roam the districts to control this order. And, as if the laws and fences surrounding the district’s weren’t enough to keep the citizens in check, the ‘Capitol’ hosts a yearly game show to reinforce the power they have over the population. This ‘games show’ is somewhat like the dark reality TV shows on the ‘Bad Wolf’ episode of Series 1, Doctor Who in 2005. Twenty-four ‘tributes’ are selected and forced to take part in the fight to the death, one boy and one girl from each district. This live TV show has but one rule: kill or be killed. “Winning will make you famous. Losing means certain death.”

Katniss Everdeen, our stories protagonist and heroine, dwells in the ‘Seam’ (the poorest part) of district 12. When the name of her younger sister is called during the ‘reaping’, sixteen-year-old Katniss steps forward to take her place. The story will have you hooked from the offset due to the curiosity that will overtake you, and the ambiguity of the narration leaving you needing to know more. From ‘Part II’ of the novel the suspense builds as each chapter ends in a cliffhanger. Wherever you read this book better be comfy as you won’t be able to move. I spent a whole day in bed clutching the book, gasping and getting teary. It is definitely worth a read. 

"Winning will make you famous. Losing means certain death." 

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