Special Edition Pre-film Book Review: The Hunger Games

Coming in March, The Hunger Games will be hitting the big screen. I decided to read the first (it’s a trilogy) novel to see what all the fuss was about. For a little background: in world previously known as North America, the country of Panem exists. The oppressive Capitol controls the twelve districts surrounding it and puts on the Hunger Games to prove their superiority. These games consist of two tributes from each district stuck in an arena fighting each other to the death and is broadcast across the nation, with parts being mandatory viewing. Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence in the film) takes her sister’s place and sets off to fight for her survival.

If that doesn’t sound like a book that will translate into a pretty good movie, then I’m not sure what will. The book is no doubt an easy, quick read that is made somewhat irrelevant considering the captivating story. Katniss and Peeta (the male tribute from District 12; Josh Hutcherson) are stuck in a battle for survival that keeps you enthralled until the end. The focus is on Katniss, who can be slightly oblivious, despite what author Suzanne Collins wants us to believe, but the supporting characters are just as interesting, so I’m hoping in the next books there is more on them.

With regards to the upcoming film, the trailer looks to be fairly true to the novel. The casting looks excellent with Woody Harrelson, Stanley Tucci, Donald Sutherland, and Lenny Kravitz (seems odd, but as Cinna I think he fits perfectly). I’m hoping Jennifer Lawrence is able to show more ability than she did in X-Men: First Class, but I don’t think that will really sway the love of the fans. Reading the novel has me convinced the film will be worth it just to see the Games come to life. I recommend devoting a portion of a weekend to The Hunger Games

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