This book was absolutely incredible! Suzanne Collins has created a mind boggling post "humanity" world. The United States is gone and what is left is the country of Panem, divided into 12 colonies or districts. The government is controlling the various districts and wants them to always remember who has the ultimate power-- them, the government.
They create The Hunger Games where each district sends tributes: 2 children a boy and a girl to fight ala gladiator style-- to the death. All of this televised on TV-- with people cheering on their favorites and taking bets. The winner getting glory and much needed supplies sent to their district.
Its the latest, greatest version of "reality TV"... gone wrong.
The book is intense, mind boggling and gut wrenching. Yet there were times where I laughed right out loud. I was nervous for the games to begin. How can a society that watches children killing children be humane?
I was completely hypnotized. The book is addicting-- I had to keep reading. I had to continue to see how it all plays out. I knew it wasn't real, and and yet I was completely transported into the land of Panem and truly believed that I was there-- in the arena with Kat, fighting for my life.
It has been a long time since a book as grabbed me and transported me into its world. The Hunger Games did just that. For days after, I would find myself thinking about Kat and Peeta. I would hear a strain of familiar music and immediately think that it would be perfect in this scene, or that.
It has enough suspense, horror and the requisite love triangle to make for a perfect read. I could have turned around and started again with this book-- finding new discoveries with each turn of the page.
The author has created a believable future. I found myself often thinking "Just how far are we from something like this? What will 100 more years bring?" Don't believe me? Take a look at the reality shows on cable.
This book is billed for "young adult" readers, but that would imply that it was "meat head" reading, or that you would not need a brain to follow along. (Which is how a lot of people view young adult fiction.) Collins writing is smart. How else do you explain the humor that Katniss displays; a person being stung to death by gigantic wasps and adult compassion as Katniss "saves" someone from mutant werewolves?
Collins, like J.K.Rowling, is not your typical, predictable young adult author. I for one, cannot wait for Book Two.