For about two and a half weeks at the end of April and start of May, I found myself consumed in a trilogy of books. It was as if a new Harry Potter book had been discovered. It was hard to wrap my head around this fictitious future North America. A frightening look at democracy in the future, given the current political climate. Once you understand the world Katniss lives in and what she is sent to do, you’re pulled in before you realize. I don’t know what point it is where I can not put it down, but once I hit that point the rest of the first book and the following two, Catching Fire and Mocking Jay, fly by and I’m done before I know it. At least that’s how it went this spring.
Then, we reach August and I’m headed to a book group to discuss it next week, and decided to reread the first book. The book group is only looking at The Hunger Games. I read it in just a few days. And was left unsure of what book to turn to next. I had planned to wait until after the book group meeting. I lasted an whole 2 days before I couldn’t wait anymore to start Catching Fire Again. And here I am resisting the urge each night this week to go to bed at 9:30 so I can keep reading.
I’d been trying to locate a recommendation for a book where the lead character was female. And not the kind in chick-lit. Someone who is strong, confident, capable, real. I noticed all these people reading these books on metro, all by the same female author. Suzanne Collins and Katniss Everdeen fit the bill. Here is a 16 year old girl who has never been consumed with romance, clothes, or thought much about life beyond how to keep her family in food. She faces real problems and remains strong and determined to care for her family. Anything beyond that seems frivolous. All I could think was, how refreshing!
Yes, there is a love story in it, but there is also real life and death, political, and personal issues. The world Katniss, Gale and Peeta live in is almost unthinkable to us. There is no explanation of what happened to North America, or how far into the future it is. What amazes me is how in many ways the little things make the story seem to be happening 100 years ago and well into the future all at once. Technology is not shared, and left only for those lucky enough to live in the capitol.
The story moves fast and abruptly stops, which left me hanging for the few minutes it took to download the next book to my Nook. I highly recommend all of them. I hope you’ll share your thoughts on them with me too.