So. The Hunger Games. You guys know what this is about, right? I mean, it’s been reviewed at least ten times on this site and I guess there was a movie or something that came out recently. I saw it, of course, since I was pretty much required to, having LITERALLY (not literally) devoured the book. Funny story (this is not really that funny)…I actually read the book while I was on my honeymoon, sitting on our balcony on a stormy day, while my new husband took, like, a four hour nap (getting married is hard, you guys) and I was SO SUPER GLAD he slept so long because if he’d tried to interrupt me in the middle of this book, I probably would have thrown him off the balcony, straight into the ocean, strong-like-Peeta style.
I’m not sure why I’m telling you any of this, other than that I’m trying to avoid summarizing this book because you already know what it’s about, right? And if you don’t, you’re probably not even reading this review, in which case I’m addressing this to no one, so I can safely say OH MY GOD IF YOU HAVEN’T READ THIS BOOK YOU ARE A BIG STUPID DUMMY DUMB FACE.
That said, here is what the book is about, in great detail, because if you’re still reading, you already know what happens. If, you know, any non-readers made it past the first paragraph, I’m pretty sure they stopped reading after I started calling them names. And if they are still reading, DUH HERE BE SPOILERS.
Once upon a time, there was a young woman named Katniss Everdeen. WE LOVE HER SO MUCH.
Wait, that’s creepy. Let’s start over. AHEM.
Katniss Everdeen is a young woman who lives in a
magical terrifying place called Panem. Panem is divided into twelve districts and Katniss is from District 12, the poorest of all districts (which is saying something). Most districts are in terrible shape because of THE CAPITOL AND EVIL PRESIDENT SNOW.
Every year, the Capitol requires each district to choose two tributes, a boy and a girl, to send to The Hunger Games, a delightful sport in which the children fight to the death. It’s fun for the whole family! The Capitol does this to punish the districts for trying to revolt 74 years ago. Basically the Capitol is all like, “Oh, you think you’re so great and you want to be free and junk? Well, we can kill your kids whenever we want, so how bout THEM apples?” I don’t know why The Capitol talks like Will Hunting, but just go with it.
Katniss has a sister named Prim who, having just turned 12, has to participate in The Reaping for the first time. The Reaping is the ceremony in which the tributes are chosen, so Prim is pretty nervous. And even though Katniss promises Prim that there’s NO WAY she’ll be chosen, she is. Oops. It’s OK, though. Katniss takes Prim’s place because Katniss is a badass. See?
Katniss and the boy tribute, Peeta Mellark, travel to The Capitol straight from The Reaping, but not before Katniss has some teary goodbyes with her sister and Gale, the beautiful man-child she hunts with. Gale is her best friend, who she MIGHT want to invite to her pants party at some point, but who knows? Not Katniss, that’s for sure, because feelings are confusing.
Katniss and Peeta travel to The Capitol with Effie Trinket, their Capitol liaison or something, and Haymitch, who previously won The Hunger Games and now drunkenly coaches District 12 tributes in between blackouts. The Capitol is filled with really obnoxious people (think of a city filled with Paris Hiltons), except for Cinna, Katniss’s stylist, who is SO AWESOME I LOVE YOU CINNA.
Cinna makes Katniss look unforgettable by setting her on fire. (Just go with it.) Everyone starts calling her The Girl on Fire but no one calls Peeta The Boy on Fire even though he was on fire just as much as Katniss. But it’s OK because soon Peeta tells everyone that he’s been in love with Katniss since he was but a wee child, so everyone is all, “Peeta! Star-crossed lovers! OW MY HEART.” Well. Everyone but Katniss. Katniss is more like: ew, feelings.
They finally enter the arena to compete and there’s an awful lot of bloody killing for a children’s novel. For a while, Katniss thinks that Peeta is working with the Careers (a group of tributes from Districts 1 and 2, who train their entire lives for The Hunger Games) to kill her, but really he’s protecting her because of all the LOOOOOOOOVE.
Katniss has a brief interlude with a young tribute named Rue but I’m not going to talk about it because it makes me feel like this:
Eventually, the gamemakers announce that they’ve changed the rules: now two tributes can win, so long as they’re from the same district. Katniss, at this point, scampers off to find Peeta, who has buried himself in mud because of his extremely disgusting leg wound. Katniss nurses him back to health and pretends to be in love with him so Haymitch will send her food and medicine, which, you know, maybe (?) makes her a whore* BUT JUST A TEENY TINY BIT because she also kind of likes Peeta. She doesn’t really know because she’s too busy trying to stay alive BUT ALSO because as we discussed, feelings = confusing.
More people die until Peeta and Katniss are the last two tributes left, at which point the gamemakers change the rules again and say that only one of them can win. Peeta is totally ready to sacrifice himself for Katniss because Peeta is better than all of us, but Katniss devises a way they can both win. Hooray! Except not, because President Snow is pissed that she tricked them, so Haymitch tells her to make sure she really, super looks like she’s in love with Peeta. He doesn’t need to tell Peeta anything because Peeta’s already in love. Peeta finds out later that Katniss was (mostly?) pretending and gets really sad face which makes me really sad face because POOR PEETA WE LOVE HIM.
This review is now over 1000 words long so I’m going to stop now. You should probably just read this (again). It’s totally worth it.
*Only NOT REALLY because this is LIFE OR DEATH, PEOPLE. Whore it up, Katniss.