I read "The Hunger Games" yesterday. It...wasn't what I expected. It's DEEP. Multiple layers upon layers.....and very, very compelling.
I'll try not to spoil it for the 1 or 2 people left that haven't read it - but, given that there are 2 sequels, you pretty much know who's going to win. :lol:
On top, it's a story about a post-apocalyptic world (it's based in the US); the US (called "Panem") was broken into 13 districts, ruled by "the Capitol". There was a rebellion, and District 13 was destroyed (or was it? I have suspicions). Now, every year, the Capitol holds the Hunger Games (so-called because the winner gets food for his/her District for LIFE)(the Capitol keeps the people in near-starvation, to prevent uprisings. Starving people don't have the strength to rebel, see.) where each District has a drawing for 2 Tributes (1 male, 1 female, from 12 - 20 (I think)). It's mandatory to put your name in; you can enter more times to earn a small supply of food for your family.
This year, Katniss's sister (12) is chosen, and Katniss volunteers to take her place.
The Games are.....think Survivor meets Roman Colosseum games meets reality TV, only with kids killing kids, winner take all. It's brutal.....but the book doesn't go into that much detail (thankfully. My imagination is vivid enough!)
That's on top. Underneath....
You have a story about the ills of government controlling the populace. The games might be rigged - you don't know, but they are used to keep control of the Districts. The Game Managers control most of the Arena- to the point of controlling the weather, the conditions, etc. It's all about control - and how the Tributes are portrayed. Each Tribute has a tracking chip, so that they can be watched at all times. There are cameras EVERYWHERE, filming - the populace are REQUIRED to watch the games, which, of course, are edited heavily.
Under THAT, you have a story of self-sacrifice.
It's....deep. And it kept me up most of the night, worrying at different points of it. Yes, it's THAT good!
There's a lot to think about in it, and I'm still thinking. I started Book 2 last night, but haven't gotten very far.....
I will NOT go see the movie. What the director and author did, was film it LIKE a reality show - all the "deep" stuff in the book aren't there. I've been told that if you haven't read the book, you'll get the top layer, and maybe the 2nd layer, but you'll miss the deeper one(s). If you HAVE read the book, you'll get it all, with a dose of how TPTB control the populace via the media.
Like I said - it's deep. I'm sure the movie is, too - IF you've read the book - but I have no desire to SEE what I've read. Not with this book......
Do I recommend it? Yes. It's well-written, and had gripped me by the end of Ch. 1. There's no gratuitous violence/sex in it (it's actually almost sex-free; there's some crushes going on, but that's the extent of *that*), and it moves quickly - just like real life.
I need to clear out my in-box, then I am curling up on the couch to read #2. I wanna know What Happens Next!
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