In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before--and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love."
Okay, to start off with... I think that if "My Side of the Mountain" by Jean George, "The Uglies" series by Scott Westerfeld, "Shade's Children" by Garth Nix, and "The Giver" by Louis Lowry were to have a child together (don't ask me how four books could have a child together, I am not a rocket scientist, I am a mere book blogger ;) ), this book would be the result (plus with a little bit of "The Truman Show" film thrown into the genetic mixture).
When I first picked up this book and started reading it, I noticed that the writing of the book isn't similar to anything I have ever read before. It doesn't flow quite like the girly paranormal stories I gravitate towards (ie. "Paranormalcy" and things along those lines). I find the writing to be a lot choppier and blunter, but it fits the premise of the book perfectly, since this book isn't about a happy-go-lucky society, but the epitome of a dystopian society. I'm not going to lie, I didn't adjust to this writing style until a good 30 pages into the book, but now as I read the later books in the series, I don't even notice the difference in writing.
Usually when I read a series where a female character is torn between whether she wants to be with her best friend/ old friend who she can see herself in a relationship with because he is comfortable and safe, versus the new boy who comes into her life who is super mysterious and all, I typically root for the new boy. My philosophy...? If you haven't gotten together in all of the time that you have been friends, why now at this random point in time does he start to show an interest in you? Just because the new boy came along and he feels like he needs to stake his claim? Therefore I am quite surprised at my reaction to this book. I seriously don't know who I want Katniss to end up with... Gale or Peeta... And also, I have read tons of reviews and plot summaries of this book, but it completely escapes me who she chooses (so it's nice that it will be a complete surprise to me at the end of the series).
Also, I am rather enjoying that all of the books are out in this series. Usually when I start a series I start when the first book is released and then I have to wait years upon years for the remaining books to be released, so it's just really nice not to have to mope around the house wondering what happens to my favourite characters (it doesn't try my patience).
Usually I am a little iffy towards the secondary characters- a lot of the time I could take them or leave them, however, in this series I find myself liking most, if not all, of the secondary characters and think that they contribute wholeheartedly to the series, especially Haymitch Abernathy. I mean first off, he is a secondary character which is bad in my books, then he is a drunk, which is even worse in my eyes, but... I cannot help but love him. He means well and does everything in his power to protect Peeta and Katniss, so I can forgive him for all of his vices and faults, plus the man is clearly a genius. And President Coriolanus Snow? Oh gosh... This man makes me so gosh darn angry, but I wouldn't change him at all. He is the most perfect bad guy if I ever did see one and Ru? Well, her fate was probably the hardest to come to terms with- she just seemed like such a little ball of energy. Cinna? Well, I think that if he were a real life person that we would be bffl's.
So all in all, if you like a ton of action and adventure, then this book is clearly for you. Throw in a bit of romance (but not too much/ too cheesy), a unique plot line, and you have the perfect combination for a great book!