Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

If I begin to rant and rave like a madman, please excuse me for I happen to be very, very upset for having read this book right now. Let me explain. I bought The Hunger Games a while back and put it on my TBR pile (which is admittedly huge). Having finished second round revisions yesterday, I decided to treat myself and read a little before going to bed at 12:30. First mistake. I am a fast reader but it wasn't til 4AM that I finished the book. There were sections that were so intense I had to reread it right then and there. Second mistake, I drank a huge glass of water before starting. Even though I had to pee really badly, I could not put the freaking book down and go to the bathroom. I can't believe I risked a bladder infection for this book. But then again, I can't believe how awesome this book is.
The Hunger Games
And that goes to the crux of why I am so raving mad that I read this book right now. Cause when I got to the end of the book, it said "End of Book One" and I had no Book Two to immediately begin reading. And that is absolutely killing me. It is exquisite agony that keeps me thinking over and over about pertinent parts of the book. I am amazed at the skill and tortured by the wait. I desperately wish I had not read it until the whole series was written so I could read them back to back. But I also wish Ms. Collins would hurry up and write as fast as possible so as not to hold me hostage by her world much longer. My most desperate wish is one I think all writers have when they read a book they love. I wish I had written this book myself. I wish I had created this world so I can control the outcome of these characters.

For those of you who may not know about this book, I'll give you a short synopsis. Ms. Collins has created a dystopian Utopia where twenty-four teenage contestants representing their districts are forced to compete in the ultimate Survivor show. You must kill the other contestants to win. The rules? There seems to be only one rule - make it entertaining. It reminds me of that great scene in The Gladiator where Russell Crowe comes out and kills ten men in a matter of seconds and the crowd is stunned silent. He turns to them and shouts "Are you not entertained?!" Oh yeah! The producers of the show don't like it when contestants aren't killed daily so they do dangerous things to add to the suspense and keep their audience entertained. The hero of the book is Katniss, a poor girl with mad hunting skills, from the poorest district, whose little twelve year old sister's name is pulled from the lottery. Katniss knows her sister cannot survive and volunteers to go in her stead. And from that moment on, the book takes you on a roller coaster ride that you physically can't get off until it rolls to a satisfying end. Except it isn't satisfying to see that there are more books to read but they are not yet published.

In my overanxious, agonized, tortured state, I have found the following information on the sequel:
Catching Fire Release Date: September 8th, 2009
Look at this awesome cover!
Image

In a PW article dated January 22, 2009, "David Levithan, Executive Editorial Director at Scholastic, mentions that the MS for Book 2 is available in-house on a "need to read" basis only." Mr. Levithan, does cruel and unusual punishment constitute "need to read," especially if I fear for my sanity? Do you need your car washed? Shoes polished? Floors mopped? Alright, I knew it was a long shot!!

But apparently Scholastic is giving ARCs away at BEA in New York City this May. Alright people, what do I have to do to get an ARC? All I want for my birthday is this ARC!!! Is any authors out there going to BEA this year? I will be your online slave for a week! I will come to your house and cook the four dishes I know how to cook well for a week! I will babysit your kids, I will cut your toenails, I will clean your car, I will write epic odes of your greatness daily! Oh what I wouldn't do!!!

Any Scholastic people out there? You wonderful book publishing geniuses you! Did I tell you all how beautiful you are? How smart and wonderful and talented... Please please please send me an ARC and put me out of my misery... at least for a short time at which point I shall recommence begging for books 3 and 4 which I understand are slated for 2010 publication. Yes, yes I'm begging, because I believe beggars can be winners too! So take pity on me!

Oh yes, I'm addicted. Like a crazy fevered junkie I'm addicted. And until I can get my hot, grasping hands on an ARC of Catching Fire, I will have to reread The Hunger Games several more times. Cause it is that good.

21 comments:

angelle said...

you've piqued my curiosity. im going to have to check it out. though... i might wait until sept so i dont find myslef in the predicament that you do...

Captain Hook said...

Sounds great. Will check it out.

Christina Farley said...

I've heard such great things about this book. Now I'm dying to read it after your review!

Kim Kasch said...

WOW - that will have to go into my TBR pile.

shanasilver said...

Can anyone get tickets for BEA? I am in NYC so it wouldn't be hard for me to go to BEA except for the ticket issue. If I go, I'll pick up the arc (read it first!!!!) and then send to you. Let me know if you know how to get tickets!

Last time BEA was in NYC, I found a ton of arcs at my local used bookstore a few days later. (The book store only accepts book donations and isn't for profit). Anyway, I can check there too, but it might be a stretch.

And btw, I LOVED Hunger Games.
-Shana

Captain Hook said...

What is BEA?

Aerin said...

Ell, are you serious about getting the ARC? I'm purposely not reading the 2nd one /until/ the third one is released.

And - ditto everything you said about it.

Charles Gramlich said...

That's a pretty impressive review. However, I've been known to take books with me to the bathroom.

Ello said...

Yes everyone - go and buy it! But I should warn that it is violent!

Captain Hook - BEA is the American Booksellers Association Convention and Trade Exhibit Expo. Only agents, booksellers and pubbed authors go. sigh. not me! I'm desperate!!!!

Mary Witzl said...

I keep meaning to buy this and read it, but we're hundreds of miles away from any English language book stores of a substantial size and I have yet to figure out how to order books through Amazon. Pathetic, but true.

My kids are positive this is a rip off of Battle Royale. I keep telling them that it's completely different, but I'm only going by hearsay...

Chris Eldin said...

Sounds like a book I would LOVE! Is it YA?
There is a show on tv called "Total Drama Island." It's a cartoon about a teenager reality show. It's entirely different in that it's hysterical. But I love the material you can find in the teenage world...

Congrats on finishing your edits!!! Must be a great feeling!!
:-)

C.R. Evers said...

I"m a raving lunatic fan of the book too! I bought a copy so I could dissect it and study the characterization, pacing and plot.

I'm in awe over the book!

Nandini said...

I've been meaning to get it, but your review has bumped it to the top of the list! I know that AARGH feeling when you get to the end of a fabulous read and it's not the end ... most recently with CHAINS and SEA OF POPPIES.

Kappa no He said...

This is the best review for a book I've ever read. I soooo want to buy it. Going to put in on my Amazon wishlist now.

Thanks!

t

Vesper said...

What a great enthusiastic review, Ello! Loved it!

There's something waiting for you at my blog... :-)

LarramieG said...

THAT'S your wish, Ello!

Mimzy said...

Neat! Sounds a lot like Battle Royale without the issue of trying to find a decent translation.

When I hit the bookstore next I'll have to look this up.

laughingwolf said...

lol...charles, you beat me to it ;)

JKB said...

I agree. This book was great. I borrowed it from a friend and read it three times before she jerked it out of my still-protesting claws.

You're even lucky, if you want to believe it. It likely won't be out in Germany before the end ofthe year!!!

What do I got to do to get one here, hmmm?

Anonymous said...

It'll actually only be a trilogy.

But yes, I want Catching Fire as well, especially the ARC.

http://www.hungergamestrilogy.com/

Anonymous said...

Yes, it is a trilogy, and guess what, i have read the advance readers copy to Catching Fire! it was so awesome!!!!!!!! like the Hunger Games, it was a cliffhanger and i cannot wait to read the third book. i really cant!!!!

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