The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
"In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capital surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capital is harsh and cruel and keeps the other districts in line by forcing them to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight-to-the death on live TV. One boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and sixteen are selected by lottery to play. The winner brings riches and favor to his or her district. But that is nothing compared to what the Capital wins: one more year of fearful compliance with its rules.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her impoverished district in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before – and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love." (jacket flap)
So, I’m sad that I didn’t like this book as much as I thought I would. It was a really compelling read. I was expecting the book to be more violent. It is a book about teenagers forced to kill each other in a futuristic version of reality TV. There was actually quite a bit of the plot that dealt with wilderness survival since the terrain the players were placed in was challenging. I really liked that bit of the story, and the resourcefulness that Kat showed during the entire book. However, I really didn’t like the romance, in fact, I found it more creepy than romantic. Peeta is a cool guy and all, but the fact that Kat kissed him because she thought it would make the sponsors send her gifts really didn’t set well with me. Honestly, it grossed me out. So, while I found it an entertaining read, it won’t be on the list of my favorites, and I’m not all that interested in reading the sequel. Alas, maybe I just had too high of expectation for the book since people were raving about it so much.
Suzanne Collin's website