December 17, 2017

The Hunger Games Bring to Mind Another Story

the hunger gamesBy Julie Samrick

I just finished reading Suzanne Collins’s best selling book The Hunger Games, which will be released as a film this spring (I am very excited to review it when it comes out).  16-year-old Katniss Everdeen is the protagonist, and I could feel teen (particularly girl) readers rooting for her as the quintessential modern heroine.  She’s smart, tough, resourceful and instead of being rescued, she does the saving.

It’s a great read, but due to violence and intense emotional scenes, I would give the book a PG-13 rating.  My 4th grader wants to read it, but I’m going to hold off.   I know it’s a popular book for adults too, with many book clubs choosing it.  Definitely lots to talk about.

The book is fast-paced, descriptive and original.  As I read though, I couldn’t help but think of an eerie short story I read years ago called “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson and wonder if it inspired Collins.  “The Lottery” is about a small town that holds a lottery every year, but the “winner” of the lottery is actually the loser, just as the chosen ones to take part in the annual Hunger Games are anything but lucky.

I used to share “The Lottery” with my 9th graders when we’d discuss irony as a device in literature.  I loved watching their expressions when they got to the end!

Read The Lottery here. It’s worth it!


  1. Ann Van De Water says:

    One of my girls really wants to read this, but I haven’t read it yet and think it sounds too creepy for a 10 year old. Joe is reading it now and I’ll read it next. What age would you recommend?

  2. I read all 3 books in a couple of weeks… don’t start them unless you have extra time they are very good and keep you up way to late to see what happens next! I have a 12 year old daughter and may not even let her read them until high school since they are a bit intense in story line but great on the romance side of things.

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