The Hunger Games: Book summary and reviews of The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games

By Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2008,
    384 pages.
    Age range: Young Adult


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Book Summary

Katniss is a 16-year-old girl living with her mother and younger sister in the poorest district of Panem, the remains of what used be the United States. Long ago the districts waged war on the Capitol and were defeated. As part of the surrender terms, each district agreed to send one boy and one girl to appear in an annual televised event called, "The Hunger Games." The terrain, rules, and level of audience participation may change but one thing is constant: kill or be killed. When Kat's sister is chosen by lottery, Kat steps up to go in her place.

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Reviews

Media Reviews



BookBrowse Review by Amy Reading If you are reading this review, chances are that you're wondering if the Hunger Games trilogy lives up to the hype. Yes. A thousand times yes. All you need to do is read the first few pages of The Hunger Games to verify this. You'll be pulled in and under. You'll set aside anything else you've been reading. You'll shirk your duties at work. You'll start reading under the table at dinnertime. I quickly learned that the only way I could make myself close the covers would be to break off in the middle of a chapter. If I waited until the end, the unbelievable cliffhanger with which Collins closes every single chapter would catch me and pull me back into the book. The only way to read these books is compulsively. Full Review

Others Say
"Starred Review. Because this is the first book in a series, not everything is resolved, and what is left unanswered is the central question. Has she sacrificed too much? We know what she has given up to survive, but not whether the price was too high. Readers will wait eagerly to learn more." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. Populated by three-dimensional characters, this is a superb tale of physical adventure, political suspense, and romance. Grades 9-12." - Booklist

"This book will definitely resonate with the generation raised on reality shows like 'Survivor' and 'American Gladiator'. Grade 7+" - School Library Journal

"This gripping tale explores ever-timely topics - violence-as-entertainment and rule-by-intimidation - and through Katniss holds out the possibility of change." - The Washington Post

"[T]he considerable strength of the novel comes in Collins's convincingly detailed world-building and her memorably complex and fascinating heroine. In fact, by not calling attention to itself, the text disappears in the way a good font does: nothing stands between Katniss and the reader, between Panem and America. This makes for an exhilarating narrative and a future we can fear and believe in, but it also allows us to see the similarities between Katniss's world and ours." - The New York Times

"The suspense of this powerful novel will keep the reader glued to the page long after bedtime." - VOYA

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Reader Reviews

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Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by lar10019
Great read!
The Hunger Games is an action filled fiction novel that is a real attention getter. It is filled with action and adventure, keeping you from wanting to put the book down. The story takes place in Panem, which consists of 12 districts called to fight against each other. When Katniss’ sister, Prim, is called to fight for their district, Katniss bravely steps in for her to keep her sister safe. With such a bold move, there is nothing left to do but to fight. This book is a great read for all ages, young and old. Anyone looking for a thrill that you can immerse yourself in, this is the book and series for you. You’ll find yourself relating with the characters and sympathizing with them as they go through their trials and adventures. While this book keeps you constantly intrigued, it definitely plays on your heart strings. With love, family and friendship as strong underlying themes, you’ll find yourself emotionally invested in this book along with each character. With many relatable topics yet unique plots, this book is easily a great recommendation for anyone looking for a fun book to read! “May the odds be ever in your favor.”

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Suzanne G.
The best
What can I say? This book is as all others have said. Simply great!

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Siera
Reading 110
I feel that the most powerful element in the book The Hunger Games is the compassion and devotion that the main character, Katniss, has for her friends and loved ones. At first you see this just within her family. After the death of her father she takes on full responsibility of her mother and younger sister, always making sure that they are fed and cared for even before herself. When her sister Prim is called as a tribute for the Hunger Games, Katniss steps in to take her place therefore putting her own life at risk. During the Hunger Games one particular bond she forms really shows her compassion and love for her fellow man.



(Edited for plot spoilers)



I thought that the author of The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins, did an amazing job writing this book. I would absolutely love to read more books written by her. She wrote the book is such a way that you are always hooked and just can’t bring yourself to put the book down. While some books, even good ones, have parts that get dull or boring, you never encounter that in The Hunger Games. While it’s true that you may never be in the scenarios that the characters face, the author still makes the characters relatable. Whether you relate to wanting to protect a younger sibling or you relate more to feeling powerless against the government, somewhere along the lines you will encounter someone or something that you can relate to.



I enjoy that although The Hunger Games is strictly fiction, the author makes the setting seem almost tangible by stating that “the city of Panem was once a place called North America.” I rather have a real life place to reference rather than a completely fabricated place. A lot of the book focuses on the government of Panem and the control they have of all the citizens and, although not nearly as extreme, you can compare it to how many American citizens feel about our own government. This is just one real life issue that the author takes and puts into her book. It’s a heartfelt, sad, but powerful story of a true survivor. Suzanne Collins is truly an excellent author and I fully intend to read more books by her including the next two books of The Hunger Games Trilogy. Not only do I recommend this author to others but even more so this particular book. It touches on family dynamics, on love, on hardships, violence, humanity, rebellion, and anything else you could ask for all in one book.

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Peyton
The Hunger Games
Amazing, simply amazing.

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Suzanne
and--I'm not a young adult (age range)
I bought this for my granddaughters (10 and 16) and figured I "need to read a few pages in case it might not be suitable." Ho, ho I couldn't put it down and finished it about 6 hours. This is one excellent book. The hype is valid. This story will be a favorite of mine. 'Course, now I have two more books to buy as soon as possible, not only for me, but for granddaughters as well!

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Becky Dodd
All Consuming!
Where do I begin???!!!
I rarely read books that are surrounded by this much "hype." I had no intention of reading it, I did not like the sound of the premise: teenage warriors fighting each other to the death for food? NOT my cup of tea. So I ordered a 'sample' on my kindle and was TOTALLY hooked after the first page. KRAZY! This was absolutely like nothing I've ever read. It was completely all consuming! I COULD NOT stop reading it, and you better have all three if you want to get ANY sleep at all. I will say that this book and the next one are better than the last book, however, I loved the ending!
I can say, now that I've met Katniss Everdeen I will NEVER be the same! This series has changed me forever. BRAVO!

...15 more reader reviews

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Author Information

Suzanne Collins Author Biography

Bestselling author Suzanne Collins first made her mark in children's literature with the New York Times bestselling Underland Chronicles series for middle grade readers. Her debut for readers aged 12 and up, The Hunger Games (September 2008), immediately became a New York Times bestseller, appealing to both teen readers and adults. It was called "addictive" by Stephen King in Entertainment Weekly, and "amazing" by Stephenie Meyer on her website, and was named a New York Times Notable Book of 2008 and a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice.

Catching Fire (September 2009), the second book in The Hunger Games trilogy, debuted at #1 on the USA Today bestseller list and simultaneously appeared at #1 on the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Publishers Weekly bestseller ...

... Full Biography
Link to Suzanne Collins's Website

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