Saturday, January 21, 2012

Finished The Hunger Games - could eat more...

I have just finished The Hunger Games - a book I enjoyed immensely for its novelty, its plotting and the spunk of its main characters fighting to survive in a barbaric 'entertainment' devised by a cruel and heartless society. I wished I could write like that.  I thought it an excellent read even though I felt frustrated and more than a little annoyed when I finished it. Folks, the main protagonist seemed inconsistent to me. So wise, so practical, so intuitive and yet with a bit of a mental block when it came to male/female relationships. But in every way the author showed her control over her plot, and her characters - maybe it was just that this reader didn't always like how Katniss Everdeen behaved? I wanted her to do things differently, to understand what she refused to grasp. She could read between the lines when the gifts turned up from her mentor. She could 'read' the subtleties of the game she was participating in and respond just as subtly. She understood the emotions and psychology of other events in the book, why couldn't she understand Peeta's motivations? She didn't really seem to even understand herself. Okay, I know she's a teenager and that's par for the course, but she was too knowledgeable about everything else to get away with this. And sometimes she seemed to 'get' it and then do an about-face in the next chapter. So no, it wasn't just that I wanted her to do things differently, I think it was a bit of a cheat, with one result being that people would feel compelled to read the next book. Its like those tv series where the sexual tension between characters is almost another person in the room, its so fully realised, but they refuse to even kiss. Its a cheat to keep us hooked. I guess its effective because I'll read the next book and really, I loved the first one. But I wish the author had been more true to Katniss's character, and not pulled the strings quite so much.

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