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The Hunger Games



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  #261  
Old February 29th, 2012, 10:15 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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I knew Gale and Katniss wouldn't end up together. No one told me, wasn't spoiled, but I could just tell from the story. I still wanted them together. She was friends with him first and if the Hunger Games never happened she probably would have ended up with him. I feel bad for him. He lost out.
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I think deep down I knew but was in denial that it wouldn't work out. I think both of them were in denial as well, at least throughout Mockingjay. The whole time I was refusing to even consider Peeta a possibility, just a temporary roadblock to Gale & Katniss' happily ever after.


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  #262  
Old March 1st, 2012, 3:34 am
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Re: The Hunger Games

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I felt entirely the same way about Gale. I was rooting for him from the beginning. I was very angeed that Collins just let him leave without nothing. I can understand Katniss grieving over Prim's death, but just to leave him out was heartless. Leah you're right, Gale did lose out, I hope he found someone as well. I was hoping Catching Frire would start the rebellion but we got back into the arena. Re-reading the series now, I can see that Gale and Katniss wouldn't have ended up together either. I can see Katniss falling for Peeta, if that's the right word for it, like when he's brushing her hair from her forehead afte she pulls him from the mud. But I still feel for Gale. Thee qas also another Twilight similarity when Peeta says he likes to watch Katniss sleep. I've also noticed Collins' writing this time around too, with all her incomplete sentences. I didn't noticeit the first time since I was so immersed in the story.


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  #263  
Old March 2nd, 2012, 9:12 am
MissMarauder  Female.gif MissMarauder is offline
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Re: The Hunger Games

Oh! I got it!

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It's sort of like Snape/Lily but on a different level. They were close friends but drifted apart due to his interest in the dark arts. Oh man, with Katniss alive, Gale's already off to a better start than Snape. I can't deal with another person having such a tragic story. Now i've just lost a little hope that he fell in love with someone else, but I've come to terms with Katniss/Peeta a little better (even though I'm STILL trying to figure out what was so great about James and what Lily saw in him).

That may even be enough for me to sleep at night. If not for the nightmares of mutts.


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  #264  
Old March 2nd, 2012, 11:07 am
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Re: The Hunger Games

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Originally Posted by potter_gleek View Post
Although Peeta had feelings for Katniss before the Games, her opinion and view of him was mostly based on what happened in the arena whilst Haymitch encouraged them to play up to the image of lovers and I just don't feel this is a healthy basis for a relationship.
I don't know about that, . In book two, Katniss was very disturbed about the fact that the Capitol was going to force them to get married. She wanted to have a choice in the matter, she didn't just accept it. Also as soon as the first Games were over, Katniss didn't hesitate much before revealing to Peeta that her feelings towards him weren't genuine and that she was only doing it for their survival. And she didn't seem very disturbed about his shock or reaction. It was later, that she started to think about him again, and I don't think it was because of Haymitch or the Capitol that time.

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I never really understood why people dislike Gale. Admittedly he can be cold and cruel at times but I always saw that as barriers he built due to his childhood, similar to Katniss. Having to watch Katniss go through the games and grow close to Peeta must have been torture. The way their relationship ended made me want to cry. I just wish they at least managed to become friends again at some point.
I didn't dislike Gale in book one or two. I just didn't think he was the right person for Katniss. In book three however, I started to dislike him because of his acceptance (and possibly approval) of using violence with innocent people. Just because his father died in a very gruesome way, doesn't mean it's okay for him not to be disturbed when the same happens to other people.

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Originally Posted by MissMarauder View Post
Peeta and Cinna are up there as well, for their subtle brilliance.
How can I forget Cinna? . I liked how he was always calm around Katniss. I think with is constant moral support, he helped Katniss a lot, probably more than Haymitch did.

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I think it was more than a partnership to survive. That's how the friendship formed, but I do believe it became more than that. The thing is, Peeta and Katniss shared something no one else can relate to. They've been through two back to back games and this craziness. I don't think Katniss feels comfortable with anyone else. It's like what Gale said about Katniss choosing whoever she thinks she can't survive without.
I think that's true. Actually Peeta was in Katniss' life before Gale was. It was his help, that encouraged her to fight on (and thus, meet with Gale).

I don't know, I always looked at things from Peeta's perspective. He almost always liked Katniss, and almost always (for one reason or another), she ignored him. It does make me feel (a little bit) sorry for Gale, when think how he must have felt, watching Katniss and Peeta during the Games. But I feel much more sad when I think of how Peeta actually entered the Games planning that if he survived until 22 kids were killed, he'll still have to die, so Katniss would survive. And when things worked out well, Katniss went back to ignoring him, then the Games came again and once more he wasn't planning to get out of the Arena. And when he did, Katniss went on ignoring him, (true, he was mad, but still..).
In the end, I thought if Katniss finally wanted to get with him, she might not be able to, .

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I was surprised for the second Hunger Games to be in book 2. I had overheard two of my friends talking about the series and I heard there would be a second one, but they made it sound like it was in the third book.
I think it was a surprise for everyone, .

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Thee qas also another Twilight similarity when Peeta says he likes to watch Katniss sleep.
Some one around here doesn't like Peeta much, methinks, .


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  #265  
Old March 2nd, 2012, 8:23 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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Originally Posted by bellatrix93 View Post
I agree here as well. I felt the narration was acceptable in the first two books, but the third could have been much better, if not for the narration. It's part of the reason why I didn't like the third book; Katniss was just a symbol, she didn't play actually play an important role.
That was pretty much the point, though. Katniss was to be preserved as the symbol of the revolution. As Haymitch told her at the end of Catcing Fire, the revolution lived as long as she, its symbol, was alive. The rebels were using Katniss as a symbol rather than a fighter, for much of Mockingjay.

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Oh yeah Finnick is high up on my list, once we got to know the real him. Also Prim, what we saw of her in 13. She was starting to get fleshed out more but Katniss didn't really follow up on consulting with her more. It's as if Ginny were to stop appearing after OotP. She was growing, maturing, developing a personality beyond "little sister" and I wish we got to see more of the Prim that worked in the hospital. Peeta and Cinna are up there as well, for their subtle brilliance.
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More of Prim would have been good. The expansion of her role in Mockingjay, giving Katniss advice, getting the opportunities she never would have had in District 12, makes her death all the more tragic - just when things would have been improving for her. And the story Finnick reveals in Mockingjay is just heartbreaking and shows just how despicable Snow is.


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Yeah, totally. I chalked it up to one of those devastating effects of war. Katniss and Gale are a lot a like, and she very well could've been more like Gale. Opposites attract. On that, though, both Katniss and Peeta are mentally disturbed. You'd think they'd each need someone sane without baggage, but sure okay, them and Haymitch can have their little victor community and deal with nightmares in their own way.
They all had baggage. Gale was very dismissive when it came to killing and had a casual attitude towards violence and violent death. For someone like Katniss who had been forced into that situation, had seen first hand that kind of violence, had committed that kind of violence herself, and been there to see the consequences, I think that casual attitude would have been hard to accept.

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In a much lighter way, it's similar to when people go to college and grow apart from their hometown friends. I hope they patched things up, but they could never be friends again, because of the jealousy or at least awkwardness between Gale and Peeta.
I think the death of Prim due to Gale's bombs might have had more to do with the uneasy relationship than jealousy. I think that they could in time become friends again, but never as close as they had been before.

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I think it was more than a partnership to survive. That's how the friendship formed, but I do believe it became more than that. The thing is, Peeta and Katniss shared something no one else can relate to. They've been through two back to back games and this craziness. I don't think Katniss feels comfortable with anyone else. It's like what Gale said about Katniss choosing whoever she thinks she can't survive without.
I agree with that. I think Katniss felt that Peeta could better relate to her experiences, whereas in Mockingjay, Gale was dismissive of Katniss's feelings and her perspective coming from the two Games. He didn't understand her concern for anybody connected with the Capitol.



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I can understand Katniss grieving over Prim's death, but just to leave him out was heartless.
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I imagine Katniss felt that the killing of her sister was a heartless tactic. I don't know how Gale's disappointment in romance can compare.


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Thee qas also another Twilight similarity when Peeta says he likes to watch Katniss sleep.
Except that Peeta doesn't break into Katniss' home to watch her sleep.

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It's sort of like Snape/Lily but on a different level. They were close friends but drifted apart due to his interest in the dark arts. Oh man, with Katniss alive, Gale's already off to a better start than Snape. I can't deal with another person having such a tragic story. Now i've just lost a little hope that he fell in love with someone else, but I've come to terms with Katniss/Peeta a little better (even though I'm STILL trying to figure out what was so great about James and what Lily saw in him).
Spoiler: show
I can see why Katniss wouldn't be able to be comfortable around Gale, knowing what his plans had done to Prim. Like Snape, Gale didn't care who he hurt, as long as it met his goal.Difference being that Gale did something harmful and destructive to work against an evil oppressor and Snape did something harmful and destructive to aid an evil oppressor. As for Lily/James, I think the absence of a Dark Mark was a good starting point for Lily, personally.


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I don't know about that, . In book two, Katniss was very disturbed about the fact that the Capitol was going to force them to get married. She wanted to have a choice in the matter, she didn't just accept it.
I agree. Katniss was trying to work out how she felt about her love life, whether she wanted either or none of these two guys, and simultaneously worrying about being forced into a marriage against her will. I think she reflects at one point that the choice of who to marry, or whether to marry at all, was one of the few freedoms they had in the districts. I think that made working out her feelings much more difficult.

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I didn't dislike Gale in book one or two. I just didn't think he was the right person for Katniss. In book three however, I started to dislike him because of his acceptance (and possibly approval) of using violence with innocent people. Just because his father died in a very gruesome way, doesn't mean it's okay for him not to be disturbed when the same happens to other people.
Gale shows an acceptance of committing violence early on in Hunger Games when he claims that killing a person can't be much different from killing an animal. Perhaps it's a defence mechanism, but it doesn't sit well with me.


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  #266  
Old March 6th, 2012, 5:41 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

I may check this out after I see the movie. Sounds interesting. A little bit of "Battle Royale" and "The Running Man" in it.


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  #267  
Old March 6th, 2012, 8:00 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

I read this last month. It was pretty good. Much better than I expected. I'm going to buy book 2 in April. This month the new Honor Harrington novel by David Weber was released, which is a must read for me. lol...


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  #268  
Old March 7th, 2012, 5:36 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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Originally Posted by bellatrix93 View Post
I didn't dislike Gale in book one or two. I just didn't think he was the right person for Katniss.In book three however, I started to dislike him because of his acceptance (and possibly approval) of using violence with innocent people. Just because his father died in a very gruesome way, doesn't mean it's okay for him not to be disturbed when the same happens to other people.
I don't think Gale is violent because He enjoys it or thinks it fine, but after losing his father (an event he blames on The Capitol) and seeing Katniss in the Game he's just built up such anger against them that He sees it as the only way to make a difference and to get revenge. I'm not saying he's right here, but I always thought he saw things like a soldier and that the 'end justified the mean'.


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  #269  
Old March 9th, 2012, 12:46 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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I don't think Gale is violent because He enjoys it or thinks it fine, but after losing his father (an event he blames on The Capitol) and seeing Katniss in the Game he's just built up such anger against them that He sees it as the only way to make a difference and to get revenge. I'm not saying he's right here, but I always thought he saw things like a soldier and that the 'end justified the mean'.
I get your point. But then again, the scheme he helped devise to bring the Capitol to an end, was not directed at the Capitol itself, but at their own people, some of which were actually children, .

I think what I don't like here is the fact that Gale (and Coin and other revolutionaries) refused to see that they were going the same way the Capitol did. They weren't indignant because the Capitol commited terrible crimes, but because they themselves, were the victims of those crimes. It's not because it was happening that they wanted to take revenge, but because it was happening to them. And naturally, if they had the chance to retaliate, they would have used it the same way the Capitol did. Which is what Coin was planning to do, if not for some of the Victors' refusal and Katniss' intervention

In other words, I think they didn't want to restore justice, they just wanted to get revenge.


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  #270  
Old March 9th, 2012, 8:46 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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I get your point. But then again, the scheme he helped devise to bring the Capitol to an end, was not directed at the Capitol itself, but at their own people, some of which were actually children, .

I think what I don't like here is the fact that Gale (and Coin and other revolutionaries) refused to see that they were going the same way the Capitol did. They weren't indignant because the Capitol commited terrible crimes, but because they themselves, were the victims of those crimes. It's not because it was happening that they wanted to take revenge, but because it was happening to them. And naturally, if they had the chance to retaliate, they would have used it the same way the Capitol did. Which is what Coin was planning to do, if not for some of the Victors' refusal and Katniss' intervention

In other words, I think they didn't want to restore justice, they just wanted to get revenge.
I see what you mean about Coin and Gale only wanting to make a stand because they were the victims. The more I think about it and his character, I can't see Gale as being one to make a stand if he wasn't directly affected (then again the books never show Gale before his fathers death and everyone in the districts have been abused by the Capitol). I can't really think of many of the characters who made a stand against the Capitol, other than Capitol citizens, who didn't have some form of vendetta against them.


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  #271  
Old March 13th, 2012, 10:10 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

i ust started reading this series and im addicted. i love this series so much.


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  #272  
Old March 19th, 2012, 2:55 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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I'm re-reading the Hunger Games in preparation for the movie next month, and I just realized that Peeta sparkles.
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I totally took that as a Twilight dig. Because it has to do with the mind altering Tracker Jacker venom. Venom, sparkles.
Just came upon that part. Peeta and the others jumped in the lake to avoid the Tracker's bites. I think it's because the water, not the venom that he sparkled, right? .


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  #273  
Old March 19th, 2012, 4:36 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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I may check this out after I see the movie. Sounds interesting. A little bit of "Battle Royale" and "The Running Man" in it.
The books aren't as gory or as harrowing as Battle Royale and The Running Man, but they're one heck of a lot of fun. Definitely worth the read just make sure you don't miss meals or anything because you're too busy turning pages because I think i managed to lose a couple of pounds that way.


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  #274  
Old March 23rd, 2012, 5:28 am
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Re: The Hunger Games

I could do with losing a few pounds anyway.

I am halfway through the book. I will post a review when I'm done. So far, I am impressed.


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  #275  
Old March 23rd, 2012, 9:15 am
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Re: The Hunger Games

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I could do with losing a few pounds anyway.

I am halfway through the book. I will post a review when I'm done. So far, I am impressed.
I have 30 pages left. I'm very impressed. It's such a pleasure to have a book you can't put down.


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  #276  
Old March 23rd, 2012, 11:45 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

That's something I love about the series. It seems every chapter ends on a cliffhanger.


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  #277  
Old March 24th, 2012, 2:11 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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That's something I love about the series. It seems every chapter ends on a cliffhanger.
Yes - and not only the end of the chapters, either, I was biting my nails the entire time. That was some masterful suspense. I hope Catching Fire is as good!


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  #278  
Old March 25th, 2012, 6:00 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

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“The Hunger Games”

The novel gets off to a good start. Collins provides the reader with all the information they need early, so the rest of the novel can focus on character development. In the first few chapters, the reader knows who all the principle characters are, their character dynamics with each other, an insight into the lead character’s mindset and personality, information on her family, a description of the world in which she lives, the rules of the Hunger Games, the process of selection, an explanation of terminology, and the oppression she is facing. There is no padding. Everything is functional and coherent.

There are problems however. It’s common in fiction to feature dictatorial governments who are so evil that they unintentionally encourage an inevitable revolution, while paradoxically trying to suppress revolution. The Capitol is utterly insane, although to be fair, that might be the point. According to the novel, North American civilisation collapsed and was replaced by a new nation called Panem, which is ruled by a wealthy capital city, and the rest of the country is divided into districts that each focus on a single industry which they supply to the Capitol. But these districts rebelled and were defeated. In punishment, the Hunger Games were created to dissuade the people of the rebellious districts to never rebel again, and the Capitol keeps most of the population on the verge of starvation and poverty.

This doesn’t make much sense to me. The Capitol seems to be putting all its eggs in one basket. What if one district provides an important industry but suffers some sort of disaster causing their industry to collapse? No backup plan appears to be in place. Is it really wise to have the districts solely focus on a single industry? Wouldn’t a diverse economy make more sense in each district? I suppose it could be seen as a safety measure. If each district only produces one thing, they can’t be a threat. It would be like each district making a different part of a gun. Each individual component is useless, but the assembled weapon (held only by the Capitol) is lethal. However if the Capitol depends on the labour of the people of the districts, wouldn’t the workers need to be fit and healthy? Surely poor and starving workers would be weak. They’d be dying of hunger and disease, which means that the labour force would be decimated. I guess it’s possible they keep the adults of working age sustained with just enough food to keep them going, and let the weak, sick and elderly die.

The games themselves seem self-defeating. As far as I can gather, the districts rebelled against the Capitol because it was oppressive and evil. So to punish the districts, the Capitol murders their children every year and forces them to watch? Rather than frightening the population into submission, it should actually cause increased hatred and a greater willingness to rebel among the population from whom it draws its victims. The rebels in such a case would likely be radicalised beyond all reason, which would place the Capitol in even further risk of being destroyed if a rebellion was successful. It also raises questions as to why the citizens of the Capitol themselves don’t object to such a vicious system and seem to have no problem watching children die every year. I can understand that the people who actively rule Panem may be ruthless but I have doubts as to whether the entire population of the Capitol feel the same way. They are described as being fashion obsessed and shallow, yet somehow despite having the intellectual capacity of the panel on “Fashion Police” they are able to organise a military and keep an entire nation under their control? That doesn’t seem logical. I guess it’s possible that whatever disaster destroyed the world may have mutated them to become insane. Then again, there are a number of characters who seem pretty normal in the Capitol like Cinna, Effie and Cesar.

I wonder why the people of the districts even bother having children, since there’s a chance they’ll be killed anyway before they reach the age of 19. It probably makes more sense to be single and focus entirely on your own survival without the need to apply for extra supplies for your family (thus increasing the risk of being reaped), or placing the burden on your child to win supplies for the rest of their family. Katniss mentions this at the end of the novel.

The novel also mentions that the Capitol is “ringed” by districts. Is that a good idea? To have the centre of an oppressive government completely surrounded by districts containing populations who hate them? Even if some of those districts were friendly, can they really be entirely trusted? What’s going to stop districts 2 and 4 for example joining together and overthrowing the Capitol? The book says that the Capitol is protected by mountains, but even so, I’d be surprised if some low level terrorism at least wasn’t a constant menace to the Panem government. The peacekeepers in particular should be routinely attacked and killed in the districts, and how exactly does one capital city manage to control the entire country? Let’s say that the coal district rebelled and got nuked by the Capitol, well that means that Panem no longer has a coal supply or workers to mine it, since the entire district is now radioactive. I question why the districts who suffer the most don’t just rebel anyway. Yes they may get killed, but that’s likely to happen anyway, either via the games or through starvation and sickness. If you are going to die, you may as well die fighting. I also presume that Panem is the only nation left on Earth since I can recall no reference to any other, though I suppose it’s possible that since the Capitol controls all media, they may block any information about the larger world getting to the people of Panem, so even if other countries were out there, the people of Panem wouldn’t know about it, or at least the rank and file citizens wouldn’t.

The dynamic between Katniss, Peeta and Gale will inevitably bring comparisons to “Twilight”, but it’s only a superficial one. The relationship between the three main characters in “The Hunger Games” is far superior. Katniss is a strong female character who is highly resourceful, compassionate, and very likable. Peeta is well developed and Gale, despite only really being featured at the start of the novel is constantly referred to throughout, which keeps him in the mind of the reader. They seem equally important to Katniss for different reasons. I have noticed online that some fans of “The Hunger Games” have been calling themselves “Team Peeta” and “Team Gale”. In my opinion, they don’t need to be doing that, unless of course it’s a parody of the “Twilight” fanbase. Haymitch serves the role of mentor very well. Although he’s usually a ginsoak, when the time comes he gets serious. Effie is only shallow on the surface, but indications are given that it’s only an act and she has depth hidden below. Cinna is a compassionate character too. I liked Cesar as well. Having characters like these are essential, because it gives the reader someone to root for. It’s also important to have an enemy as repulsive as the Capitol because it gives the reader something to root against. Too much of modern fiction IMO has unlikable “heroes” and only vaguely evil “villains”. Personally I prefer more defined roles for each. Collins provides that for the most part. The career tributes are somewhere in the middle. Not “evil” but simply ruthless because the world they inhabit has forced them be so.

I’m not the biggest fan of the names assigned to characters in this book.I like “Effie Trinket” because it just sounds flamboyant, but Katniss? Peeta? Cato? Haymitch? Primrose? Awful names. A little too whimsical for what is a rather dark novel. I also think the actual games part of the book does drag. Not greatly, but it does bog down a book which up until that point had been progressing very swiftly. I have serious doubts that the population of the Capitol would really be so enthusiastic about watching an event that lasts for weeks with large periods of the tributes doing virtually nothing. I felt Rue’s death lacked some impact, because the reader didn’t really know her that well. I figure that Rue was basically a proxy for Prim, and that Katniss’ kind treatment of her was more symbolic of a big sister protecting a younger sibling. I liked the scene where Thresh spares Katniss and I especially liked the line where Katniss feels sympathy for Rue’s killer and states how she hates those who forced them to participate in such violence, rather than being hostile to the tributes involved in the violence, since they are all victims of the same system. The relationship between Katniss and Peeta is well developed after his injury. Treating his wounds brings the two characters closer together and it works very well. I liked the story thread that they must feign romance to avoid allegations of encouraging rebellion, although hints are dropped that it may not be an act.

Overall, I did enjoy this novel and I look forward to the second and third ones. I do find the whole concept of “The Hunger Games” a little unrealistic though. I mean, seriously, a nation of people only a few steps away from crippling poverty working themselves to death to preserve a social system which provides luxury for an elite who divide the population by playing them against each other and distract them using entertainment and media? That’s not at all believ………hmm.

On second thoughts maybe it’s not so unrealistic.


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  #279  
Old March 26th, 2012, 12:38 pm
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Re: The Hunger Games

I really enjoyed your review, AldebaranBlack.

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Originally Posted by AldeberanBlack View Post
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“The Hunger Games”

The games themselves seem self-defeating. As far as I can gather, the districts rebelled against the Capitol because it was oppressive and evil. So to punish the districts, the Capitol murders their children every year and forces them to watch? Rather than frightening the population into submission, it should actually cause increased hatred and a greater willingness to rebel among the population from whom it draws its victims. The rebels in such a case would likely be radicalised beyond all reason, which would place the Capitol in even further risk of being destroyed if a rebellion was successful.
I think the Capitol relies on keeping their constituents hungry enough as to make them feel continuously defeated. Despair is very hard to overcome. Also, it's mentioned that the Capitol has used means to spread paranoia among the population (the jabberjays, for example), which is an effective (and used in real life oppression regimes) method of stifling the possibility of consolidation among the oppressed.

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I can understand that the people who actively rule Panem may be ruthless but I have doubts as to whether the entire population of the Capitol feel the same way. They are described as being fashion obsessed and shallow, yet somehow despite having the intellectual capacity of the panel on “Fashion Police” they are able to organise a military and keep an entire nation under their control? That doesn’t seem logical.
I think the actual brains behind the whole system are not reveled in the book - the stylists, escorts, etc seem to be more of hired staff than a part of the whole establishment behind the concept of the games. And we don't really get to meet any of the Gamemakers.

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I wonder why the people of the districts even bother having children, since there’s a chance they’ll be killed anyway before they reach the age of 19. It probably makes more sense to be single and focus entirely on your own survival without the need to apply for extra supplies for your family (thus increasing the risk of being reaped), or placing the burden on your child to win supplies for the rest of their family. Katniss mentions this at the end of the novel.
Maybe they don't have reliable birth control, or birth control is banned precisely because the Capitol needs the people to reproduce.

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The novel also mentions that the Capitol is “ringed” by districts. Is that a good idea? To have the centre of an oppressive government completely surrounded by districts containing populations who hate them? Even if some of those districts were friendly, can they really be entirely trusted?
I think the Capitol's enormous advantage in terms of technology is a good enough protection.

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Spoiler: show
What’s going to stop districts 2 and 4 for example joining together and overthrowing the Capitol?
Katniss mentions that travel between the districts is prohibited - I imagine so is communication between them.

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Spoiler: show
I liked the story thread that they must feign romance to avoid allegations of encouraging rebellion, although hints are dropped that it may not be an act.
I liked that, too - it was a clever way of making the readers wonder what they actually feel. Although I personally am convinced that
Spoiler: show
Peeta is in love with Katniss and has been for a long time; and I think Katniss is definitely attracted to him but is not ready to face any feelings she might have for him, because it would further complicate a situation she has a hard time dealing with already.


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Overall, I did enjoy this novel and I look forward to the second and third ones. I do find the whole concept of “The Hunger Games” a little unrealistic though. I mean, seriously, a nation of people only a few steps away from crippling poverty working themselves to death to preserve a social system which provides luxury for an elite who divide the population by playing them against each other and distract them using entertainment and media? That’s not at all believ………hmm.

On second thoughts maybe it’s not so unrealistic.
Yeah, it sounds like a very close resemblance to what my own country was like during the Socialist years, from what I've heard and learnt in school: luxury was only accessible to the political elite, travel outside of the socialist block was prohibited, and the State Security system ensured an enormous web of spies in practically all areas of life and all places in the country, so that people were never sure whom they could trust.


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  #280  
Old March 27th, 2012, 12:53 am
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Re: The Hunger Games

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Originally Posted by bellatrix93 View Post
I think what I don't like here is the fact that Gale (and Coin and other revolutionaries) refused to see that they were going the same way the Capitol did. They weren't indignant because the Capitol commited terrible crimes, but because they themselves, were the victims of those crimes. It's not because it was happening that they wanted to take revenge, but because it was happening to them. And naturally, if they had the chance to retaliate, they would have used it the same way the Capitol did. Which is what Coin was planning to do, if not for some of the Victors' refusal and Katniss' intervention

In other words, I think they didn't want to restore justice, they just wanted to get revenge.
I agree that there was a measure of revenge rather than justice to the actions of Coin, and in following her, Gale and others.
Spoiler: show
I agree, that Coin's plan for another Games shows that revenge was a strong motivator. There was nothing just about doing that, it would have been stooping to the level of the Capitol.


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Originally Posted by potter_gleek View Post
I see what you mean about Coin and Gale only wanting to make a stand because they were the victims. The more I think about it and his character, I can't see Gale as being one to make a stand if he wasn't directly affected (then again the books never show Gale before his fathers death and everyone in the districts have been abused by the Capitol). I can't really think of many of the characters who made a stand against the Capitol, other than Capitol citizens, who didn't have some form of vendetta against them.
I agree. Even if Gale's father had never been killed in the mines, he and his family would still have been suffering the oppression of the Capitol. Gale had taken the tesserae since he was twelve, so poverty had put him at an extra risk of being chosen for the Hunger Games before his father died.

But, even some of the Capitol residents had something against their leadership - Lavinia the Avox and her companion in the woods, for example, must have had some problem with the Capitol as they fled.

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Originally Posted by bellatrix93 View Post
Just came upon that part. Peeta and the others jumped in the lake to avoid the Tracker's bites. I think it's because the water, not the venom that he sparkled, right? .
On rereading, I noticed that Cato was sparkling, too, when he arrived after Peeta. It may well be the water - Katniss thinks Peeta is sparkling as if he's been "dipped in dew" and Cato is "sparkling wet".

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Originally Posted by AldeberanBlack View Post
This doesn’t make much sense to me. The Capitol seems to be putting all its eggs in one basket. What if one district provides an important industry but suffers some sort of disaster causing their industry to collapse? No backup plan appears to be in place. Is it really wise to have the districts solely focus on a single industry? Wouldn’t a diverse economy make more sense in each district? I suppose it could be seen as a safety measure. If each district only produces one thing, they can’t be a threat. It would be like each district making a different part of a gun. Each individual component is useless, but the assembled weapon (held only by the Capitol) is lethal.
I agree that it is a safety measure. The people in the districts are limited, skills-wise. None of them would be self-sufficient, none of them have diverse skills and training. However, the Capitol is equally dependent on the Districts and lacking in self-sufficiency.

Quote:
The games themselves seem self-defeating. As far as I can gather, the districts rebelled against the Capitol because it was oppressive and evil. So to punish the districts, the Capitol murders their children every year and forces them to watch? Rather than frightening the population into submission, it should actually cause increased hatred and a greater willingness to rebel among the population from whom it draws its victims. The rebels in such a case would likely be radicalised beyond all reason, which would place the Capitol in even further risk of being destroyed if a rebellion was successful.
The people in the districts are regularly reminded of the destruction of District 13 after the last rebellion - it's mentioned in the Mayor's speech at the Reaping. The Districts live with the knowledge that rebellion means certain death, for their entire district. They balance this against the risk of losing their children to the Games. I think the Games do increase hatred - the people hate the Games and endure them because they must. But they are unarmed, and the Games are designed to increase the sense of powerlessness - this is the intended message - that there's nothing the districts can do about the Games, and that a rebellion will bring even worse consequences. I think there's a general sense of hopelessness and helplessness in the districts, and this is strengthened by being forced to endure the Games.

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It also raises questions as to why the citizens of the Capitol themselves don’t object to such a vicious system and seem to have no problem watching children die every year. I can understand that the people who actively rule Panem may be ruthless but I have doubts as to whether the entire population of the Capitol feel the same way. They are described as being fashion obsessed and shallow, yet somehow despite having the intellectual capacity of the panel on “Fashion Police” they are able to organise a military and keep an entire nation under their control? That doesn’t seem logical.
I think that the ordinary Capitol residents are not those keeping the country under an iron grip. The ordinary Capitol residents live in luxury, but they're not all politically powerful. I think that they have become distanced from reality, they're distanced from the idea of struggling to make ends meet. They can't connect with the idea that those children dying in the wilderness for their entertainment are real people, they're someone's child, someone's sibling, someone's friend. And, perhaps it's something to do with the desensitisation to violence on-screen - they can't connect with the idea that these are real deaths, there are real people left behind to grieve.

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I wonder why the people of the districts even bother having children, since there’s a chance they’ll be killed anyway before they reach the age of 19. It probably makes more sense to be single and focus entirely on your own survival without the need to apply for extra supplies for your family (thus increasing the risk of being reaped), or placing the burden on your child to win supplies for the rest of their family. Katniss mentions this at the end of the novel.
Katniss also says this to Gale at the beginning - she never wants to have children. I think a part of it may be fear of seeing a child in the Games.

However, as Yoana mentioned, the people in the Districts may not have access to contraception. It's possible, as Katniss' strategy for avoiding having her own children is to never marry.
Also, in a society where the elderly, the ill and the injured are left to fend for themselves and often starve, children may be seen as a sort of security for one's later years.

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The novel also mentions that the Capitol is “ringed” by districts. Is that a good idea? To have the centre of an oppressive government completely surrounded by districts containing populations who hate them? Even if some of those districts were friendly, can they really be entirely trusted?
The Capitol is separated from the Districts by the Rockies. It was mentioned somewhere in the first book as being one of the big obstacles for the rebels. They had to scale the mountains, leaving them vulnerable to aerial strikes. It's not made clear how much land survived the disasters, but the majority of Panem seems to be to the east of the Capitol.

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What’s going to stop districts 2 and 4 for example joining together and overthrowing the Capitol?
There's little to no communication between the ordinary people of the districts. Katniss suspects that her conversation with Rue about life in their respective districts is being censored before being shown on air. The districts don't have a lot of opportunity to interact.
Divide and conquer works well for the Capitol. Gale says as much when complaining about them. The Games set district against district and rich against poor. The lack of communication means that an uprising would mean destruction for that one district, as it did for District 13.

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The book says that the Capitol is protected by mountains, but even so, I’d be surprised if some low level terrorism at least wasn’t a constant menace to the Panem government.
The people can't get away from their districts. I imagine there's large distances between individual districts, too. District 12 doesn't seem to border on Eleven, or any other district, for example.

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I question why the districts who suffer the most don’t just rebel anyway. Yes they may get killed, but that’s likely to happen anyway, either via the games or through starvation and sickness. If you are going to die, you may as well die fighting. I also presume that Panem is the only nation left on Earth since I can recall no reference to any other, though I suppose it’s possible that since the Capitol controls all media, they may block any information about the larger world getting to the people of Panem, so even if other countries were out there, the people of Panem wouldn’t know about it, or at least the rank and file citizens wouldn’t.
As the ordinary people in the districts are limited in what they know of other districts within their own country, I agree that the Capitol would keep information of other countries from them.

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They seem equally important to Katniss for different reasons. I have noticed online that some fans of “The Hunger Games” have been calling themselves “Team Peeta” and “Team Gale”. In my opinion, they don’t need to be doing that, unless of course it’s a parody of the “Twilight” fanbase.
I agree. Who Katniss ends up with is not the centre, is not the be-all and end-all of the Hunger Games trilogy. There is much more going on, and the romantic side, while an element, is not the most important thing. Nor does the Hunger Games trilogy define Katniss purely by who she wants to be with. The survival element is far more important, as is the oppression by the Capitol.

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I’m not the biggest fan of the names assigned to characters in this book.I like “Effie Trinket” because it just sounds flamboyant, but Katniss? Peeta? Cato? Haymitch? Primrose? Awful names. A little too whimsical for what is a rather dark novel.
I quite like the names. The names of the Capitol residents, and some of the Careers, like Cato, call to mind names of the Roman Empire, underlining the parallels to Ancient Rome in the world of Panem.
Katniss and Primrose, children of an apothecary and a woodsman, are named after plants. Peeta, a baker's son, whose name sounds like a type of bread. Rue and Thresh, from the agriculture district, have plant related names, too.
Perhaps the names are a little unusual, but I think that is a reflection of the passage of time.

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I have serious doubts that the population of the Capitol would really be so enthusiastic about watching an event that lasts for weeks with large periods of the tributes doing virtually nothing.
They're not - which is why, if there have been no deaths, or not enough action, the Gamemakers introduce something to force the tributes together to fight -like the fire, the feast, or draining the water everywhere except the lake. They don't want the audience to get bored.
Plus, the people may not watch the Games all day - perhaps they watch highlights each day.

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Originally Posted by Yoana View Post
I think the Capitol relies on keeping their constituents hungry enough as to make them feel continuously defeated. Despair is very hard to overcome. Also, it's mentioned that the Capitol has used means to spread paranoia among the population (the jabberjays, for example), which is an effective (and used in real life oppression regimes) method of stifling the possibility of consolidation among the oppressed.
I agree. I think that years of suffering - generations, really, - have left the people of the Districts without hope for change or improvement.


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