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In case you are one of the four people who haven't heard about "The Hunger Games," it's a dystopian book/movie series set in a future North America.

So I was hoping that "The World of the Hunger Games" would further explain the backstory, creatures and civilization of Suzanne Collins' universe. However, the book is really more of an illustrated storybook -- it has a a LOT of photographs, a nearly-full plot recounting, and a hefty dose of padding (how many full-page quotes are we gonna get?).

There's not a lot of new information, or in-depth description of the actual "world" of the Hunger Games. There are a few interesting descriptions, like the explanations of tracker jackers, jabberjays and wolf mutts, or the explanation about the fashions in the Capitol. However, those interesting bits are few and far between... literally.

About half of the book is made up of various color pictures from the movie, which usually take up one or two pages apiece -- and they can go on for four or five pages. Occasionally there's a quote from one of the characters (or occasionally from Suzanne Collins herself), but the bulk of it is made up of photos. Nice photos, but most are not "world of" material.

Most of the text is recounting the plot overall, and incredibly obvious observations like "Katniss will do anything to protect [Prim]." Yes, thank you, that becomes quite clear when you actually see what happens IN THE PLOT. It's sort of like a Cliffs Notes version of "The Hunger Games." It has the entire story, with key spoiler plot points left out, from beginning to end. It might be a nice accompaniment for people who are really desperate to know the general outcome of the plot before seeing the movie (or reading the book).

There's a three page glossary as well, which does help out with some details that hadn't been clear before, such as what avoxes are or the place where tributes are "made beautiful." But honestly, I would have preferred this information to be spread over the "World," with more details -- and it would have been nice to see some new information, such as about the backhistory of Panem.

"The World of the Hunger Games" is a misnomer -- it's half photo guide, half plot summary, with a few informative chunks thrown in the mix. Nice for people who haven't seen the movie/read the book, but not very useful to people who have done either.
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on March 25, 2012
I wanted to rate this book lower than I did, because it didn't live up to any of my hopes. I was thinking we'd get detailed information that is not found in the book, and I was totally wrong. If you are a loyal fan looking for maps, backstories, or anything else that you can't glean from reading the series or even from seeing the film, do not waste your money. The quotes from Collins may be new, but they aren't giving any information that's not in the book and/or movie. It's basically a summary of the film with lots and lots (and lots) of pictures. If you are interested in seeing the film or reading the books first, please don't pick this up if you don't want things to be spoiled. On the flip side, if you're sensitive and are worried about the violence in the film, you might do well with this little companion instead. Obviously it's not a copy of the script, but it hits all the main points and even includes some of the jokes and funny moments with lots of visuals to draw you in.

Despite my upset, as someone who really enjoyed the film, I have to admit that the stills they picked are nice. Some of my favorite moments are included, and I have to say that it's nice to be able to relive them quickly and clearly with this book. The photo choice is what saved this from being 2 stars.
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on March 23, 2012
This book is fine for what it is - a movie companion. But when I preordered this title back in January it was described here as sort of an atlas of Panem, the official one from Scholastic, offering maps of the districts, the history of the conflict, descriptions of the districts' people and products, etc. In other words, the background of the world in which the story takes place. While fine on it's own, this isn't what I thought I was ordering.
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on December 29, 2013
This book is not what I thought I was getting. I ordered this because in the description it says its a book that says things about each district and each character from all the BOOKS. HA!!!!! All this is pictures from the first movie!
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on March 19, 2013
This book is just all quots there is nothing here that you can't find in the book and or the movie. I am very disappointed with this book. And if you do get it don't get it in kindle . It is a little better in a hard back .
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on November 10, 2012
The first thing I think people should know about this book is that it's small. Take a standard size sheet of paper and fold it in half and that's the size of this book. It's easy to overlook sizing when buying a book, so I was a bit surprised when I first saw it.

The book doesn't really go very in depth of the story, it's more like a movie-illustrated storybook telling you what The Hunger Games and Panem are all about. One interesting thing is that it appears to have been written based off of an early script because some of the "lines" quoted in it are not found in the book OR the movie.

The middle of the book is a little weird when it gets to the Arena because while the beginning and end features actual writing, the middle is all pictures and captions, as if the author got lazy.

Scholastic published three books and the best of the three is the Illustrated Companion. That one goes very in-depth to the creation of the movie and even the publishing of the book. I gave this one four stars simply because it's photo heavy and the photos are a really great part of it. I also own the Kindle edition.
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on April 6, 2013
The book is a standard HC-sized book, less than 200 pgs. Not much in it but some quotes from the novel or movie dialog and stills from the movie. I thought maybe it would give more insite to Panem ala the Star Trek books that give more detail about the ships and races that inhabit other planets. This was a little disappointing. Its more a publicity book than a behind-the-scenes or extra info book. It has a glossary in back with the names of the other tributes and a few details about them, and items in Panem. That might be helpful if one never read the books and only saw the movie to help keep things straight in your mind about whats going on in the movie. Glad I purchased used, I dont feel so bad about wasting my money on this. It's really not worth it unless you HAVE to collect all sorts of Hunger Games memorobilia.
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on January 27, 2013
Nothing not already mentioned in the first book or showed in the movie. I wouldn't recommend to anyone who has already read the book or seen the movie
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on December 10, 2013
the best set of books that I have read in a long time that are out of my usual topic of vampires. have not seen the movie yet wanted to read the books first but do own the movie and will watch and have the second movie on preorder.
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on February 5, 2014
I had read all of the books, then went to see the first movie. When I went to the second movie I had forgotten a lot of the little details. this book helped me remember, it was a good partner to the series
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