The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games #1)

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Reader reviewed by mearley

This summer, I watched a reality show called "The Mole." Before each elimination, the host would announce that the contestant with the lowest score would be "executed." My husband, who typically does not watch reality shows with me, overheard this and said, "They don't really execute anyone, do they?" Of course, the answer was "no" but, sadly, in our society today it is all too easy to imagine a reality show where the losers are literally executed. Tha...more This summer, I watched a reality show called "The Mole." Before each elimination, the host would announce that the contestant with the lowest score would be "executed." My husband, who typically does not watch reality shows with me, overheard this and said, "They don't really execute anyone, do they?" Of course, the answer was "no" but, sadly, in our society today it is all too easy to imagine a reality show where the losers are literally executed. That is the premise of Suzanne Collins's book The Hunger Games.

Two teens from each district of the former USA are selected each year to participate in the Hunger Games. The contestants must literally eliminate each other until only one is left alive. This one will be rewarded with much-needed food for his or her family.

The narrator, Katniss, has a little bit of an advantage because of her skill with a bow and arrow. She is a strong but stubborn contestant. Her drive to win is complicated when she begins to develop feelings for Peeta, the other contestant from her district. This, for me, was what made the novel so compelling. Are Peeta's feelings for Katniss true, or are they a calculated move to win over the TV audience? Can Katniss bring herself to kill Peeta in order to win the Hunger Games? Does she want to live with herself if Peeta is dead? And what about Gale, Katniss's possible boyfriend watching the games from home? Once I started this, I could not put it down. I will be eagerly waiting for the next book in this series!

Reprinted here with author's permission.
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