By Suzanne Collins
North America is a ruined nation with twelve districts and one Capitol. Long ago the districts tried to rebel against the Capitol, and now to keep them in line the Capitol forces them to provide two “tributes” (a boy and a girl) to the annual Hunger Games. Here the contestants are thrown into an arena where they must battle each other to the death on live TV. Only one may survive.
Profanity = G
There is no profanity of any kind in this book.
Sexuality = PG
While there is some kissing in this book, it is very tame (e.g. “They kissed.”).
Violence = PG
This book is based on a violent premise, but while the thoughts and actions of the characters reflect the knowledge that they will have to kill each other eventually, the actual violence is very limited. When it does occur, its mention is very brief and not at all lurid. Though the idea of the violence may be (and indeed should be!) disturbing, I’ve seen Disney movies that are more graphic (e.g. Lion King).
Religion = None
No mention is made of religion in this book. It is simply not dealt with.
Writing Style =
It is rather rare that books are written in the 1st person present tense, and it took a couple of pages to get used to this style. However, it was done to great effect. Furthermore, the cliffhangers at the end of each chapter are riveting. The author excels in making you not want to put this book down.
Overall Review =
This book is a gem. I admit I got a little fed up with the main character’s interpretation of events a couple of times, but that displeasure only served to heighten the intensity of the book, and was doubtless a deliberate device on the part of the author. Although the first chapter of this book reads like any standard post-apocalyptic novel, by chapter two the action heightens to a point where you become completely hooked. I nearly cried at one point in the book (and let me just say that I can count on one hand the books that have made me cry, and I’ve read thousands) and suffered strain of emotions at various points. All the way to the end of the book you are on tenterhooks for the character(s), and the book leaves you craving for the sequel.
This book is accessible to any audience, but should probably be reserved for those 6th grade to Adult simply because the violent premise of the book may be too intense for younger children. Both boys and girls will like this book.