THE HUNGER GAMES by Suzanne Collins

Sandy’s review of THE HUNGER GAMES.      In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the other districts in line by forcing them to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight-to-the-death on live TV.

One boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and sixteen are selected by lottery to play. The winner brings riches and favor to his or her district. But that is nothing compared to what the Capitol wins: one more year of fearful compliance with its rule. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her impoverished district in the Games.

But Katniss has been close to dead before — and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

CRITICAL ANALYSIS
This book was written for the Young Adult audience, but as with many YA books, appeals to a far wider audience.  It is appropriate for sixth grade up.  Adults will find it disturbing, causing thought, and making a statement about people and society.  I found myself wondering what I’d do in the main characters place.  Her very life is at stake as well as the future of her family, by every move made, some of which are plotted and planned, some of which have deep instinctual backing.  How would we react in this situation?  HIGHLY recommended for ANYONE.  I can guarantee I will be leading the adults to this series in a heartbeat.

REVIEW EXCERPTS
#1 New York Times Bestseller
A Publishers Weekly Bestseller
A Horn Book Fanfare
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2008
A School Library Journal Best Book of 2008
A Booklist Editors’ Choice
A New York Times Notable Book of 2008
A Kirkus Best Book of 2008
A New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice
A USA Today Bestseller

“[The Hunger Games] is a violent, jarring, speed-rap of a novel that generates nearly constant suspense… I couldn’t stop reading.” — Stephen King, Entertainment Tonight

“I was so obsessed with this book that I had to take it with me out to dinner and hide it under the edge of the table so I wouldn’t have to stop reading… The Hunger Games is amazing.” — Stephanie Meyer

“[The Hunger Games] is a great book, and very thought-provoking. Read this along with your teen and discuss it.” — Charlaine Harris

“Brilliantly plotted and perfectly paced.” — John Green, New York Times Book Review
“A plot-driven blend of suspense, science fiction, and romance.” — USA Today

“Enthralling, imaginative and creepy.” — Los Angeles Times

“{A} superb tale” — Booklist, starred review

“Readers will wait eagerly to learn more.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

CONNECTIONS
Upon finishing this book, it goes without saying that you need to read Catching Fire and Mockingjay.  Immediately.

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