Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Hunger Games

The hunger games, by suzanne collins is a phenomenal series in both plot line and character development. i find the first book to be my favorite. in the first book, entitled the hunger games, our heroine describes a world in which its a struggle to survive. the capitol takes its resources from the 12 surrounding districts, everything from food, clothing, and fuel to the people themselves while giving absolutely nothing in return. the people of the 12 districts live in poverty and constant fear for their safety and survival while the capitol and its people live fat, happy, and spoiled and enjoy the never ending splendor of the hunger games seemingly in complete ignorance of the truth of the conditions in which district people live in. the gross disregard for human life is particularly interesting to me. while i disagree personally with anything even resembling capital punishment, the idea of such a system being in place and how the people involved deal with it is intriguing to me. its hard for me to come to grips with the idea that a society would be so completely ok with slaughtering children for public entertainment. it bothers me that the capitol's society is so spoiled and ignorant that they actually make themselves throw up their food so that they can consume more. as far as characters go, katniss is by far one of the most annoying in my eyes. she didnt really bother me all that much in the hunger games, however in the second book, catching fire, she is thrust back into the arena with peeta and is seemingly completely ignorant of his feelings for her and of her own for him. she is clever enough and charismatic enough that she's started a rebellion and is getting the hang of the arena and its various traps and even has enough sense to destroy what amounts to a force field around the arena, but can not for the life of her understand peeta or gale. peeta's character is one of my favorites. he develops beautifully. he goes from casually crushing on katniss to willingly putting his life at risk to save hers. handsome and a talented public speaker, he's gotten them out of many political traps and has won over the hearts and minds of the capitol's citizens. at the end of catching fire however, peeta is left behind while katniss is rescued and ends up being tortured and "hijacked". when he finally returns in the final book, Mockinjay, he hates his former crush and is driven insane with fear and a need to kill her at the very site of her. thinking back on it, this was probably my least favorite book. the rebellion that takes place, while completely necessary and long over due, seems almost overplayed and overly dramatic. the rebels seem to be too focused on filming katniss than the actual war. while i know the propos play a huge part of getting support from other districts, it seems to me that the book focuses too much on them and not enough on the hardship and retaliation of the districts. katniss' character is the only one i think im truly unhappy with. while the other characters seem to grow and develop she seems to degrade. she is so blind to her importance to the rebels' cause and to peeta and yet at the end of the final book she makes a very risky political move by killing coin (president of the rebels). after snow (president of the capitol) puts into her head that coin has a mind to replace him as the new dictator, she makes the decision and acts on it. instead of killing the already dying president snow in a public execution, she assassinates president coin out of fear that snow (her long time tormentor) is being honest and is right. the idea that she can make such a decision when she is so blind to whats going on around her seems tedious at best. many of the losses experienced in this book also aggravate me. i truly enjoyed finnick's character and am sad to see one of katniss' best supporting characters slaughtered. another would be the death of the sister for whom katniss originally entered the games to save. it seems to undermine what she has accomplished, intentional or otherwise, and seems unnecessary for me. im certain its meant to be ironic and that ms. collins intended to write it that way, but it seemed to defeat the purpose of the books. if katniss hadnt saved prim from the hunger games, the rebellion wouldnt have started and theyd still be slaves scraping a living off rocks. three books later the sacrifice is pointless as far as katniss is concerned. there's alot more about these books id like to discuss, unfortunately i have to get up in the morning so im going to leave it at what it is, even if i know this review is really quite pathetic and doesnt adequately discuss all of the points id like to discuss. i hope we can talk about it in one of our meetings.

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