Starved for adventure

Many readers will recognize the ironic dystopian series, The Hunger Games.

In the ruins of what was once North America are twelve different districts, each of them producing different products for their rich Capitol city. These districts make up Panem, a fictional country in The Hunger Games. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins is a dystopian novel about a young girl named Katniss Everdeen, who volunteers to compete in the Hunger Games in her little sister’s place. 

Panem was once a peaceful country, until the Dark Days, when the districts started uprising. After a long war, the districts were eventually defeated. As punishment for defying the Capitol, the Hunger Games were created. Two tributes from each district, one male and one female, were chosen once every year to compete in the games. The tributes were placed in an arena where they had to fight to the death. The last tribute standing won.

The Hunger Games is fictional, and to many people the story may seem unrealistic. The truth is that many people in the real world can relate to the struggles that the people in the districts have to face. Because of the current events in Ukraine, many citizens don’t have access to water or power. They sadly have to live in these terrible conditions due to the ongoing war. The Hunger Games does a great job of showing how war can affect people.

Sixteen year old Katniss Everdeen grew up in district 12, the coal mining district. Like most people in district 12, her family didn’t have any money. After Katniss’s father passed away, she had to take care of her mother and younger sister. She is very talented with a bow and spent a lot of time hunting in the woods with her best friend Gale. Each year before the Hunger Games, a reaping takes place, where each district’s tribute is chosen. Each child in the districts have their name entered every year for the reaping, lasting from when they are twelve to  eighteen years old. 

On the day of the reaping for the 74th Hunger Games, Katniss and her sister Primrose got dressed up and left for the square where it would take place. Every reaping starts with a speech from the mayor. After that, District 12’s escort, Effie Trinket, takes the stage to announce the tributes. Even though her name was only entered once, Primrose Everdeen’s name was drawn. Katniss wouldn’t let her sister be in the Hunger Games, so she volunteered as tribute in her place. The male tribute was a boy named Peeta Mellark. After saying goodbye to their families, Katniss and Peeta were taken to the Capitol to prepare for the Hunger Games.     

The story follows Katniss through her gruesome experiences as she tries to survive the games. Throughout the book, she makes unexpected friends and forms new alliances while being hunted by other tributes. The Hunger Games is an amazing book for anyone who enjoys science fiction or dystopian novels. There are two more books in the series after The Hunger Games, Catching Fire and Mockingjay. Language Arts teacher Mrs. Davisson said she liked this book and she enjoys dystopian novels. “Even though they are set up in alternative cultures, they always speak to me and make me think about what ours could become.” Eighth grader William Zheng said he would recommend reading this book because it starts slow but it picks up speed quickly.

I loved reading this book because of how different it was from other books I’ve read. I really liked the way it was written. This story was so interesting and I couldn’t put it down once I started. The Hunger Games is definitely a very sad book but I also thought that some parts of it inspired hope. I thought Katniss was such an interesting character and I liked her personality. I would definitely recommend that anyone looking for an exciting book with some romance should read The Hunger Games