December 2, 2010

The Hunger Games post.

Well, I did it. I finally read The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins.

(The Hunger Games, Catching Fire & Mockingjay.)

And I must admit, I don't understand the hype that revolves around them.  My friends all rave, I've read nothing but positive, joyful reviews by fellow bloggers and critics alike, and yet I could barely muster the energy to want to finish them. 

* This post is not at all a review. It's merely my thoughts/questions/ramblings of all three books.

The Hunger Games is, if anything to me, entirely too repetitive and shallow.  Katniss barely evolves as a character, Gale is never mentioned beyond the beginning, and Peeta comes on too strongly for little to no reason (save for some bread incident when he was younger), which makes him beyond unbelievable and grossly sappy.  Intense love at first sight? I don't think so. Everything is the same: Katniss is questioning herself and others, she's afraid, she's traveling, she's questioning herself and others, she's afraid, she's traveling some more, etc. I don't think Collins' writing style helped my initial thoughts of the series, either; it's so dry, so unemotional. 

The Game itself is drawn out. I appreciate that Katniss isn't always the damsel in distress and can fend for herself, but until she genuinely interacts with the other contestants, the Game is boring.  It doesn't help that Katniss seems to have some kind of invincibility preventing her from suffering much.

I never connected to Peeta.  He's too nice. I don't fall for the sickeningly sweet romance. I've yet to understand how it's genuine at all.  Why does everyone fawn over him?

Catching Fire feels like a repeat of the first, of The Hunger Games.  That is all.

Mockingjay has more substance by a long shot.  Yet possibly too much, as if everything from the first two books must weave together into some semblance of a completed story.  It doesn't quite drag along, but the character development takes a back seat until halfway through.  And that's my one big, consistent problem.  I can't help but feel as though the characters never grow - instead the action and descriptions take over the story. I would love to know more about Gale.  Even Finnick. Or Annie.  Even Haymitch.  Even President Snow.  Even Boggs. But instead we get glimpses of them; just when they're about to progress, to grow as characters, we're cut off from them and the story changes its course.

The epilogue is strange.  It's quite a leap, and makes me think of settling, as if everything that's happened results in one big settlement.  And that just has me wondering, Why? Why settle? What was all of this for?


If I had to pick one word to sum up the trilogy, it would be anticlimactic.

So what do you think? Did the epilogue feel like a settlement of sorts to anyone else? What about Peeta - why is he so likeable when he's so unjustified in his actions?

And yes, before anyone asks, I am all for Team Gale.


  1. I've only read the first book and it took me awhile to read that I put it down and picked it up at a later time because I couldn't get into it. I'm glad there's someone else who has the same feeling I did. I do have the other two to read, but I'm not much of a hurry to read them. Thanks for the thoughts.

  2. Oh no...I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the series, Alissa! I guess it really isn't for everyone though. I loved the series through the whole thing, and I'm one of the few that actually loved Mockingjay and found it was a fitting conclusion. I do appreciate your honesty and the points you made though! :)

  3. Would you have liked it more without the hype? Sometimes I looks forward to a book so much, it can't live up to my expectations, and other times I am pleasantly surprised by a book I thought would be mediocre.

    I loved the first one, thought the second one was okay, and was disappointed in the third one.

    I'm glad there's at least one person who didn't jump on the band wagon :)

  4. Demitria - I think I definitely might have liked it more without all the hype; I know that partly affected my overall feelings, because I expected something fabulous.

  5. Wha?

    "Katniss barely evolves as a character" <-- I have to disagree. She finds strength and courage in herself that she didn't know she had. And unemotional? OMG! I thought it was too emotion driven.

    Peeta has a natural charm to him that works for some and not for others. He certainly made me swoon more than a few times.

    I did feel the same with the epilogue in Mockingjay. I didn't like it.

    Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts. Very interesting take. ;)

  6. Missie - I don't know.. for some reason Katniss always seemed to fall back into the same loop. She would evolve, then revert to how she previously was. Didn't seem like growth to me - seemed more like a cycle.

  7. Aww, I'm sorry you didn't like it! I'm totally one of those people who hypes it up and recommends it to anyone who's looking for a new book to read because I just loved it so much.
    I thought the ending was perfect; I couldn't see it happening any other way.
    I love Peeta because he just seems so perfect for Katniss. He is so sweet, he counteracts Katniss' edge and seriousness.

  8. Aylee - I totally acknowledge that Peeta counteracts Katniss in those ways, it's just that the two of them together isn't convincing to me. I don't understand how just because Peeta seems perfect and offers Katniss limitless amounts of affection, that they're meant to be together. There's no build up. They just ... happen.

  9. " never connected to Peeta. He's too nice. I don't fall for the sickeningly sweet romance. I've yet to understand how it's genuine at all. Why does everyone fawn over him?" This is EXACTLY how I felt about Peeta, and still do. Thank you for putting it into words for me lol. I thought the epolouqe fit because it was meant to show that Katniss will truly be damaged forever because of what happened to her. She deserved a quiet sheltered life after all that. So I liked it. I like your interesting perspective though. :)

  10. Danielle - That's true, about the epilogue. But it still seemed so unfitting to me. Like nothing amounted to anything.

  11. See, I love Peeta and the love story here. I'm glad it's not the main point of the trilogy, but I still love it. Peeta is one of my favorite characters of ever and I loved the whole bread incident, but I completely agree with what you said about the Games being a bit boring at times. To be honest I was SO GLAD that Mockingjay didn't have another Game because I was sick of it & wanted something else... which that last book definitely delivered.

    But really I love this trilogy.

  12. Jordyn - Agreed! If Mockingjay had another Game I might not have bothered finishing the series at all.

  13. You are the first blogger I've met who hasn't enjoyed this series. I agree Mockingjay wasn't quite up to standard, but I loved the others. I enjoyed reading your 'ramblings' though :)

  14. another new follower

    I love The Hunger Games and enjoy every pages of it.It was one of my unputdownable books

  15. Great review, I also didn't enjoy The Hunger Games, actually enough to not waste my time reading the others in the series.

  16. Honestly, I LOVED The Hunger Games. A lot. I mean, the first book. The second was all right but I really feel like she both lost me and ruined it with the third book. I almost wish she had kept the first book as a solo and not made it a series at all.

    I did like Peeta. I didn't like Gale because I thought Gale was selfish and distant, especially in the third book. I don't know. I wish I had read the first book and left it at that.

  17. I'm sorry that you didn't enjoy them very much. I agree that Catching Fire, did seem like a repeat of The Hunger Games. That was my least favorite out of the three. I would have to say Mockingjay was my favorite, and I thought that it was a nice close to the series. Hopefully, better luck next time!


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