Read for the 2011 YA Reading Challenge.
I am pretty late to the whole Hunger Games phenomenon, but I finally got my hands on the first book. I can totally understand how this is the next big thing since Twilight.
This is a post-apocalyptic tale, where the US has morphed into a country called Panem, head quartered somewhere in the Rockies. What land is left is divided into districts. At some point, the districts rose up against the Capital, and lost. District 13 was completely obliterated, and to keep the other twelve districts in line, the Capital devises the Hunger Games.
Every year, a teenage boy and girl are drawn by lot from each district, and are brought to the Capital, where they must fight to the death. Only one will leave the district alive, and it's broadcast live in television, with compulsory viewing for all.
Katniss Everdeen lives in District 12, what was once coal country in Appalachia. Her father died in a mining accident, and ever since, she’s had to care for her mother and younger sister. It’s her sister’s first year of eligibility in the Hunger Games lottery, and when Prim’s name is drawn, Katniss volunteers to take her place.
This book, the first in the trilogy, finishes with the end of the Hunger Games (it’s pretty obvious who has to win, but there’s plenty of interesting story to get you there). I’m very interested to see where the next two books go. This is definitely a worthy series to be the next big thing – it’s better written than Twilight, and has a much better story.