The Hunger Games [Kindle Edition] review

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Starred Review. Reviewed by Megan Whalen Turner If there really are just seven original plots in the world, it's odd that boy meets girl is always mentioned, and society goes bad and attacks the great guy never is. Yet we have Fahrenheit 451, The Giver, The Home in the Scorpion—and now, following a lengthy tradition of Brave New Worlds, The Hunger Games. Collins hasn't tied her future with a specific date, or weighted it down with a lot of finger wagging. Rather less 1984 and rather more Death Race 2000, hers is often a gripping story set inside a postapocalyptic world where a replacement to the United States demands a tribute from each of their territories: two children to get used as gladiators inside a televised fight to the death.Katniss, from that which was once Appalachia, offers to adopt the host to her sister inside Hunger Games, but after this ultimate sacrifice, she is entirely centered on survival at any cost. It is her teammate, Peeta, who recognizes the significance of holding on to one's humanity in such inhuman circumstances. It's a credit to Collins's skill at characterization that Katniss, like a whole new Theseus, is cold, calculating whilst still being likable. She gets the attributes to be a winner, where Peeta gets the grace to become an excellent loser.It's no accident these games are presented as pop culture. Every generation projects its fear: runaway science, communism, overpopulation, nuclear wars and, now, reality TV. Their State of Panem—which needs to maintain its tributaries subdued and its particular citizens complacent—may have created the Games, but mindless television may be the real danger, the means where society pacifies its citizens and punishes people that don't conform. Will its connection to reality TV, ubiquitous today, date the book? It might, but for now, it can make this the right book on the right time. What happens if we choose entertainment over humanity? In Collins's world, we'll be obsessive about grooming, we'll talk funny, and all sorts of our sentences will end using the same rise as questions. When Katniss is distributed to stylists to get made more telegenic before she competes, she stands naked in front of them, strangely unembarrassed. They're so unlike people that we're no more self-conscious than if a trio of oddly colored birds were pecking around my feet, she thinks. In order to not hate these creatures that are sending her to her death, she imagines them as pets. It isn't really exactly the contestants who risk the loss of their humanity. It is perhaps all who watch. Katniss struggles to win not exactly the Games nevertheless the inherent contest for audience approval. Because this can be the first book in a series, not it is all totally resolved, and what's left unanswered may be the central question. Has she sacrificed too much? We understand what she's got given around survive, but not if the price was too high. Readers will wait eagerly to learn more. Megan Whalen Turner could be the author with the Newbery Honor book The Thief and its sequels, The Queen of Attolia and The King of Attolia. The next book inside series will be published by Greenwillow in 2010. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Grade 7 Up -In a not-too-distant future, the Usa of America has collapsed, weakened by drought, fire, famine, and war, being replaced by Panem, a country divided to the Capitol and 12 districts. Each year, two young representatives from each district are selected by lottery to take part in The Hunger Games. Part entertainment, part brutal intimidation with the subjugated districts, the televised games are broadcasted throughout Panem since the 24 participants are forced to eliminate their competitors, literally, wonderful citizens necessary to watch. When 16-year-old Katniss's young sister, Prim, is selected as the mining district's female representative, Katniss volunteers to look at her place. She and her male counterpart, Peeta, the son in the town baker who seems to possess all the fighting skills of an lump of bread dough, will likely be pitted against bigger, stronger representatives who have trained just for this their whole lives. Collins's characters are completely realistic and sympathetic since they form alliances and friendships inside the face of overwhelming odds; the plot is tense, dramatic, and engrossing. This book will certainly resonate using the generation raised on reality shows like 'Survivor' and 'American Gladiator.' Book among a planned trilogy.Jane Henriksen Baird, Anchorage Public Library, AK Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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