1,047 of 1,100 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An haunting series that will stick with you long after the last page is turned
The Hunger Games (Trilogy) is one of the most "unputdownable" books to enter the teen market in a long time. The cliffhangers at the end of each volume are so intense, you can't help but continue on. Knowing this in advance, I decided against reading the series last summer despite the fact that everyone was talking about it. I waited the extra year, and I'm glad I...
Published on August 27, 2010 by Bonnie Lynn Wagner
403 of 485 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 3 stars for formatting
***This review only concerns the formatting for The Hunger Games Trilogy-Kindle edition***
I downloaded this ebook trilogy collection on 7/23/11 and have found the same inconsistent font defect as other reviewers. I noticed that the font would suddenly change when beginning a new chapter or if I returned to the page I was reading after viewing a highlight or...
Published on July 25, 2011 by Lori Maze
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1,047 of 1,100 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An haunting series that will stick with you long after the last page is turned,
For the record, this isn't a series for everyone. You will be drained emotionally by its end. The Hunger Games is one of the grimmest dystopian worlds I've encountered in literature. A lot of characters die, and their deaths aren't pleasant. This series may not be for you. Then again, those who know me well would say it's not for me, either. I'm one of the most squeamish people you'll meet, and The Hunger Games more closesly resembles the movie Battle Royale than I thought it would when I started reading. I really enjoyed the series, though. There are scenes so poignant, they'll stick with me. Between this and Stieg Larsson's Millennium Trilogy, I've found that even squeamish ole me can still enjoy a disturbing book if it's thought-provoking and well-written.
Now that I've warned you about the contents, let's move on to the meat of this review. It's hard to go in-depth without giving a lot away, so I decided to focus on the trilogy as a whole instead of singling out Mockingjay and reviewing it on its own (though I do have a paragraph dedicated to it further down). A brief synopsis for the uninitiated:
The trilogy takes place in the future. The USA has been destroyed; in its place is Panem, which consists of thirteen districts and a Capitol city. Before the series begins, the districts revolt against the Capitol and are defeated; the thirteenth is completely obliterated. As retribution for their crimes, each district is now required to send a boy and girl, called tributes, to participate in the annual Hunger Games. The games are centered around survival; there can only be one winner (Luckily, most of the deaths occur off-page, so it makes it easier for the squeamish to read). The characters are very rich and detailed; some of their deaths hit incredibly hard and are forever memorable. In the second book, Catching Fire, there is a lot of unease in the districts, and a lot of anger when the year's Hunger Games take a twisted turn and past winners are forced to battle it out for survival. The final book, Mockingjay, consists of a full out rebellion; the districts are at war with the Capitol and it's do or die in a showdown so explosive, readers never see it coming.
Mockingjay has already received flack for not going in the direction fans anticipated. Most were caught up in a romantic triangle and hoped the final book would have a heavy emphasis on this theme with war as a backdrop and a happily-ever-after on the horizon. At the same time, Suzanne Collins has been setting up the revolution since Day One; the grim nature of the first two books should lead readers to believe that the finale will continue in a similar vein. Yes, people will die and it won't always be fair. That's life. I think the direction of Mockingjay was natural, especially in war-like situations. Characters will not be the same as they were earlier in life; war changes you. I would have been disappointed if Collins sidestepped harsh realities in order to soften the story. The tale she weaves is extreme, but it's also genuine. To me, by sticking to her guns and not copping out for something friendlier, she has created a memorable, haunting series that will stick with you long after you've finished reading it.
I'd also like to bring attention to the amazing book jacket art put together by designer Elizabeth B. Parisi and artist Tim O'Brien. At first glance, they don't mean much, but once you've read the serious, you notice just how ingenious they truly are. Before I read the series, I looked at the preview of the Mockingjay jacket and thought, "Wow, that's bright compared to the first two." Now I know better. Each book features a mockingjay, which is a hybrid mix of mockingbird and jabberjay (a Capitol creation used for spying on enemies during the first rebellion). The first book features the bird as the pin the main character, Katsa's, friend gives to her. The book is black and grim, giving it a desolate air. Every character in the Games feels hopeless, as though he/she won't survive. The second book's mockingbird is trapped inside a clock-like environment, which is the setting of the Hunger Games in this volume. The book is red for fire (both for its title, Catching Fire, and the literal associations with the element in the book), for anger (the fact that previous survivors of the Hunger Games must participate once more), and for bloodshed. Both books feature these circular objects that link to one another representing the way the districts and Capitol are linked. The final book features a mockingjay with its wings spread out. The linked circles are in broken pieces around it. The book is a vivid sky blue, the color of peace and hope. These covers have become favorites of mine; I adore the symbolism.
All in all, I'm personally glad I've read this series and wouldn't change a thing. I'm glad I didn't sidestep it due to its violent nature and extreme situations. This trilogy is one I'll read again to delve into the intricate layers I know Collins has laid out for us. Collins is a master at capturing a society at war and showing the horrors that come when a corrupt government is in control.
280 of 303 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A True Classic,
Collins is both a talented writer and a gifted storyteller, two things that do not always go hand in hand. In The Hunger Games trilogy, she has created characters that will stay with me and has given them a hard and difficult story that will haunt me. She also managed to keep the quality of the series high throughout which is not always the case with a book series.
At the conclusion of book three - Mockingjay - Collins hasn't wrapped everything up in a neat little bow and slapped a happy face sticker on the bow's ribbon ends nor, IMHO, should she have done so. Instead, Collins provides a conclusion that suits the story, that left room for my internal `if-onlys', `what-ifs', `I-wonders' and `but-what-abouts', but that I also found satisfying.
I consider The Hunger Games trilogy to be a great accomplishment for Collins and a true classic for both teen and adult readers of both sexes. I'm very pleased to give it a permanent place on my-favorite-books-of-all-time shelf where, coincidentally, it will sit right alongside The Underland Chronicles.
Very, very highly recommended.
Note: Prices will vary, but you may want to price the books out to see if you'll get a better deal buying them separately. As I write this, you will, so if you're not really committed to the box... :-)
403 of 485 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 3 stars for formatting,
I downloaded this ebook trilogy collection on 7/23/11 and have found the same inconsistent font defect as other reviewers. I noticed that the font would suddenly change when beginning a new chapter or if I returned to the page I was reading after viewing a highlight or dictionary defintion.
And like another reviewer, I have also found that once I passed page 377 (the actual page 377 is the cover of the second book in the trilogy, Catching Fire), the trilogy always indicates that I am on page 377 of 379, even though I am well beyond that page, and it is clear from the final location number that there are obviously more than 379 pages in this collection of three books. The locations, however, do seem to track properly.
Although these formatting defects are not dealbreakers and I really enjoyed the books, they are annoying (with the ever-changing font size being the more annoying of the two). I hope the publisher will fix these defects and reissue a corrected version.
55 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hunger Games: More Powerful Than You Think,
This review is from: The Hunger Games Trilogy: The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay (Paperback)First, as The Hunger Games are wildly popular at this time, I really did not want to like them as much as I did. There's a snobbery in me that tends to assume that extremely popular fiction has merely reached a low common denominator for the unwashed masses, and them alone (see Nicholas Sparks and Stephanie Meyer). That said, contrary to my expectations, I did not merely enjoy The Hunger Games. I was devastated by them.
I devoured the whole trilogy in about a week and a half. I've no doubt it wouldn't have taken that long if (a) I didn't have a day job, and (b) I'd had access to all three books in one sitting. If this seems extreme, well, it is. Not afraid to say it.
The framework is a common enough idea in literature: it's fiction of dystopia (there are hints that the country of Panem has replaced the now-dead USA) with an oppressive government and pockets of oppressed citizens. Leaders rise, conflict ensues, and the fates of citizens and nation alike are challenged, burned, and reformed (almost never in neat-and-tidy ways, either).
This isn't to say that the plot is formulaic, because the specifics of the Hunger Games themselves as modern gladiator-style melees to the death is unique and compelling in the future context. Katniss Everdeen as the first-person protagonist does not fit into any formal compartments either, and her inner conflict, selfishness, selflessness, good decisions and bad ones all present emotions that not only compel and frustrate, but also ring true.
While the storytelling is clean and the events easily maintain interest, it's the crushing human emotion and condition that propelled me through and left me an emotional wreck at the end of each novel. Relationship, loss, oppression, rebellion, selfishness, selflessness, brokenness, bitterness, hatred, destruction, redemption, grace, love, epic sadness, humor, injustice, family--it will rock you if you let it. And I recommend you let it.
The books have their fair share of violence, but the writing is neither overly graphic nor gratuitous. It's not a violence of glory, either, but one of tragedy and necessity. The love interest between Katniss and (well, it would be cheating to tell) is tactful and doesn't fall into the trap of being overtly sexual. There are instances where Katniss sleeps together with a boy her age, one that loves her, and one that she kisses and cares for--but it's only that. Their relationship develops out of care and protection, not sexuality.
I recommend the trilogy to anyone with a heart. I think it's more than appropriate for younger readers, provided you are ready to have some really great discussions about violence, liberty, oppression, revenge, love, and sure, even sex (though again, there is no inappropriate content to that end).
Please read it now.
28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Kindle Version Warning,
As for the book itself, I find it highly addictive. Each chapter ends with a cliffhanger, so don't start reading it if there is something else you should really be doing. It's not literature like Dickens of course, or even Harry Potter, but it is several notches above such romance-genre suspense and fantasy novels like Discovery of Witches (which I also enjoyed) and the Highlander series (which I could not stomach). Our hero is a feisty, strong, likable, emotional young woman and she needs to be all of this to survive. It's a suspenseful fantasy and a dystopian survivor tale with a lot of video-game-like images, which are not too blatant. I make this point because the video game feel might be appealing to boys, even though the main character is a girl.
Written in first person.
22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow, Wow, Wow,
30 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thought Provoking,
33 of 41 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Starts off with a bang.. ends disappointingly.,
The second book, Catching Fire, is even more compelling, because Katniss is much more focused and motivated throughout the book. Somehow the horrors of the Hunger Games are much, much worse the second time. This was my favorite of the three as I felt like Katniss's voice as a character was at its most compelling and well-written climax here.
Mockingjay falls short of the standards of the other two books. I've heard from one of the producers of the film personally that the publishers had tried to get Collins to split it into two books, but she was adamant that she was done with it. It shows. The entire book felt rushed, like Collins just wanted to get it out and over with. There are some gem moments in here, but overall it was a terrible, unsatisfying read. Yet, the reader feels like he/she HAS to finish reading it since he/she has already invested so much time in this series, in these characters. The characterizations were lazy and cheap, and Suzanne Collins abuses the "knock Katniss out and then explain everything to her in long pages of exposition later" device so often that all the important action of the entire book happens off-page.
It's a very frustrating book, and for this unfortunate "last 1/3" of this box set, I must give this item 3 stars.
The first two books average about 4.5 stars for me, but the last was so disappointing that as a whole, the trilogy is much less for it.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Problems with Formatting of Trilogy Ebook Now Corrected,
I'm happy to report that when I downloaded the free sample again today, the problem appeared to have been corrected. I then went ahead and bought the trilogy ebook. I can now confirm that the font-size problem that was discussed extensively in another three-star review here has been corrected. I'm not saying the ebook is now flawless (free of all typos, for example), but THAT problem, at least, appears to have been corrected. I hope this is helpful to those who, like me, held off on buying this edition due to the font-size issue. I've looked over the corrected version on my Kindle, and I now give it five stars overall for formatting. It looks good.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Read,
Many of you will recognize this as the old Spartacus / Gladiator story. Which is not a put-down in any sense -- she spun this old slave turned gladiator turned revolutionary trigger tale masterfully! The best tales can be told over and over again by great writers and be fresh and exciting in each telling.
Suzanne Collins has that rare combination of skills -- she is a really good writer and a great storyteller. I literally could not put this down once I started reading it. I read all three books in less than three days as I just had to find out what happened next. I thought the first book was the best of the three, but all of them were very, very good. I would say more, but if you haven't yet had the story spoiled for you (I hadn't), I won't ruin it for you.
Personally, I thought the ending was just right -- it would have been thematically incongruous to wrap this up the way many people seem to have desired.
I also don't get the complaints about the Kindle formatting. I read this Kindle edition (on a Fire) and had absolutely no issues. Yeah, there was a typo or two, but that's about it. If the formatting had sucked, I wouldn't have been able to finish the entire trilogy in less than three days. ;)
I recommend this book highly -- very highly. You might want to keep a box of tissues nearby for some of it, though -- parts of it are absolutely heartbreaking.
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Hunger Games Trilogy The Hunger Games; Catching Fire; Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins (Paperback)
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