Christmas morning, my sister gave me a little Totoro plush and The Hunger Games. Twenty hours later, at three AM, I finished reading my new book, with the cute plush by my side. Ah, the luxury of staying up late to read. It’s unthinkable during the semester, but on Christmas, it’s perfect. I haven’t been able to do that for a long time.
Before elaborating on what I like about the book, I’ll give one critique. It was in present tense. Instead of saying “she jumped,” the narrator says “she jumps.” I don’t know about you, but that bothers me. It doesn’t feel natural. Even when someone tells you something that is currently happening, they still use past tense. After the first chapter, my mind began to glaze over and I could enjoy the story. But every now and then it would jolt me out of reader mode and into writer mode.
Other than that, I enjoyed the story and the characters. The last dystopian novel I read was 1984 by George Orwell, which was quite different. In The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins mixes modern young adult fiction and dystopia. The book features a strong heroine, Katniss, who struggles against governmental injustice and manipulation. Despite her distrust of the system, she is forced to play along, creating tension between values and survival. The tension is well built—which is why I stayed up till three to finish it. I very rarely do that. Even during breaks from the action, tension remains strong. I have the second book on my desk right now, but I’m not quite ready to pick it up. I need to recover from the first one. I don’t prefer emotionally destressing books, movies, etc, but The Hunger Games was worth it.
P.S. The cover conveys the feel of the book very well. I love it.