The Hunger Games: A+
Oh man, this book was good. It was really good. It was really, really good.
The United States is no longer and has given way to a nation called Panem, split into twelve districts and its Capitol. In order to have the citizens of Panem remember the cost of rebellion, the Capitol hosts The Hunger Games annually, where two kids (ages 12-18) are sent from each district to fight to the death.
Our heroine is Katniss, sixteen and toughened from the harsh conditions of living in Disctrict 12, a coal mining district. Her father passed away when she was young and when her mother went into serious depression, she took over as the head of the household, working hard to support her family. She adores Prim, her sister younger by four years.
It is time for The Reaping, and out of all applicants, Prim is the female tribute selected and Katniss quickly volunteers to go in her stead.
So starts The Hunger Games, a story that will really have you on your toes, but even greater is how it makes you think ...about life. What is love? What is death? And what do you do when you have to survive? Katniss sees the indulgence and excess in the Capitol - what is overindulgence and what is compassion? Of course, what had me in tangles was the love angle of this entire affair.
Simply put, it is quite a grand read. I rushed to Borders the next day, consumed the sequel in three-and-a-half short (but glorious) hours, and am counting down until the third is released.
It's the kind of book that makes me remember why I love reading.